Norbert Obi is the Anambra State Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA). He spoke with reporters in Awka, the state capital, on about the governorship election and Governor Willie Obiano’s chance at the poll.
What is your assessment of Governor W illy Obiano’s performance in office?
I will start by thanking the governor for making APGA faithful proud in Nigeria and the world at large. To be honest with you, APGA members are sincerely proud of Governor Obiano’s performance in office, The governor has performed excellently well beyond the expectation of Ndi-Anambra electorate. Governor Obiano has truthfully justified the confidence reposed in him by Ndi-Anambra.
What we are witnessing in Anambra is a fulfillment of the biblical statement that says “When the righteous is on the throne, the people rejoice”. Governor Obiano came into office prepared to use his private sector wealth of experience and innovative ideas to deliver dividends of good governance to the good people of Anambra State.
He started with security and succeeded in tackling insecurity in our State and the resultant effect of his well-fought war against insecurity is that Anambra Is now secured and being referred to as the safest state in Nigeria. Governor Obiano’s successful war against insecurity turned Anambra to investor’s best choice of destination. In ail honesty, Governor Obiano has succeeded in attracting life-changing investments to Anambra State and this is to the benefit of our people because it provided job for our teeming youths. Governor Obiano is a man that believes that action speaks louder than words hence the reason why all sectors of governance are beneficiaries of his administration developmental strides, Ndi-Anambra has never had it so good like this. As at today, 130 communities have completed their 20 million naira community project and that is the 1s phase of the project, they are now on the 2nd phase of the community projects.
What are other achievement?
On road sector, it might also interest you to know that many road projects have been completed by this administration, starting from inherited projects and the newly initiated projects of this administration. In Anambra north, work is seriously ongoing at the 42km Aguleri Otu-Enugu Otu-Oil rig road with a bridge that has already crossed Omambala River. This project will help to address the issue of the disputed ownership of the oil discovered in Anambra because in the past non availability of bridge at the Omambala river forced our people to be accessing the Enudu-Otu oil rig through Enugu State, but as we speak today, you will just drive down to Aguleri, cross the Omambala river with your car and drive straight to Enugu-otu oil rig through Eziagulu-Otu Aguleri. So that 42km Eziagulu Otu – Enugu-Otu oil rig road is an enviable legacy project of Obiano’s administration. In that same Anambra north, Governor Obiano’s administration is constructing a 7km road with another bridge that has already crossed Omambala River. You will agree with me that Omambala axis in Anambra State is an agrarian and water logged area, so for that reason, major road projects around that area especially Anambra East, Anambra West and Ayamelum must have a bridge that will cross the Omambala river. The people of Anambra West are happy with the lyiora and Mmiata Anam road projects that were initiated by the truly working Governor Obiano’s administration. Major works are ongoing at Nando- junction-Onitsha- Aguleri-Adani road, it is a 7km road project that was awarded by Obiano’s administration.
The people of Ayamelum Local Government are also beneficiaries of Governor Obiano’s administration dividends of good governance delivery. We have Coched farm rice producing company attracted by Governor Obiano to Ayamelum and it provided job opportunities for Ayamelum people. Works are ongoing on the access road that linked Umueje to Aguleri-Otu oil rig road. If you come to Anambra central, Obiano administration used the construction of the already completed Awka flyover to beautify Awka as Anambra Capital City. All you need to do is to enter Awka at night and you will behold the irresistible beauty of the city staring you at your face. Neni to Nkpuota- Adazi Anl road project awarded by Obiano’s administration has been completed, the Nnokwa – Ichida road project is ongoing. Works are also ongoing at the Oba-Onitsha, Owerri international market road with a bridge. That one is another legacy project of Obiano’s administration. We now move to Anambra South senatorial zone because I am reeling out his achievements in the three Senatorial zones of Anambra State. In Anambra South, works are seriously ongoing at the 7km Nnewi urban roads, namely, Onwuzulike Okonkwo road and Francis Maduka road. The Ekwulobia – Ezmifite road project that was awarded in July 2013 by Mr. Peter Obi’s administration has been completed by Governor Obiano’s administration, work is ongoing at St. Peter University-Achina- Onneh road project, the project was awarded by Governor Obiano’s administration in 2016. Serious works are also ongoing at the Z7km Amansea- Ndiukwuenu-Awa- Ufuma road with 2 bridges. The Ukpor-Umunuko-Nza Ozubulu 16km road project is on going. So when you hear people saying Willie is working that is the reality on ground in Anambra State. God used Governor Obiano to bless Ndi Anambra at this point in time that our nation is passing through unbearable economic challenges.
Opposition party leaders said that they will destroy the Awka flyover project when they take over power in the state because the project is substandard and causing obstruction at the Awka Federal highway.
That is what you hear from irresponsible opposition party leaders .The person that made that reckless statement is Chris Ngige and that is to say that Anambra ARC has nothing to offer Ndi Anambra except destruction. I remember vividly that Nigeria Society of Engineers gave the Awka flyover projects a standard certification and they also certified it okay for commuters use. Just recently an APC Lagos based activist took a swipe on Anambra APC leaders for the armchair criticism and irresponsible opposition politics they are playing in our State. He did this in a full page article published at the back page of daily Sun. He went as far as declaring his support for Governor Obiano’s 2nd term bid, Responsible opposition party leaders keeps the ruling government on its toes with constructive criticism. But what we are hearing and getting from Anambra opposition leaders is a well orchestrated blackmail and armchair criticism. They are playing irresponsible opposition politics in Anambra State and Ndi-Anambra are now aware that they have nothing good to offer them. What they do is threatening Ndi Anambra on how they will deploy Federal might to conquer the stale of which Ndi-Anambra are already prepared to resist such devilish plot vehemently with the last drop of their blood because even God said in the bible that ‘when you resist the devil, he will flee from you’. That is what we are going to do to APC and PDP in the forthcoming 18th November 2017 governorship election. Anybody threatening to destroy the 3 flyovers constructed by Obiano’s administration at Awka does not mean well for Ndi-Anambra and Ndi Anambra will use their voting power to stop such evil plan. Tile truth is that Anambra opposition party leaders are confused set of people. Governor Obiano’s administration good works plunged them into confusion and they don’t have any other thing meaningful to say against our working Governor and that is the reason behind their resort to unguarded and reckless utterances.
Anarnbra APC secured a judgment from the Awka High Court ordering the state government to conduct local government elections. What is your reaction to the court judgment?
That is to say that there is separation of powers in Anambra State. I gave Governor Obiano kudos for giving Anambra judiciary the needed free hand to perform their duties. APGA government in Anambra State is not against the conduct of local government election. The government will conduct the election at the appropriate time. Election at any level is capital intensive and requires careful planning. ANSIEC has just been reconstituted. The State Government will prepare a budget which will be sent to the House of Assembly and as soon as the election budget is approved and signed into law Local Government election will be conducted. Many states in our Country today are battling to pay salaries not to talk of democracy dividends delivery. But here in Anambra, Governor Obiano is paying salaries and at the same time delivering dividends of good governance to Ndi Anambra.
What is your view on the APGA leadership crisis?
There is no leadership crisis In APGA because the authentic APGA leader is His Excellency Chief Dr. Willie Obiano and Ozo Victor Oye remains our indefatigable national chairman. Usurpers will not be allowed to hijack the office of APGA national chairman. What I want you to know is that Undemocratic forces are plotting to use a well orchestrated devilish plot to disorganize our party ahead of the November 18th Governorship election, but they have failed because APGA will remain one united and indivisible party under the firm leadership of Governor Obiano and Ozo Victor Oye. What is that APGA will clinch a landside victory in the forthcoming governorship election. Ndi Anambra are in love with AGPA because our government is delivering dividends of good governance for them.
What is your view on the ongoing voters registration?
I will advise INEC to improve on the exercise. A situation were 1000 people will converge at their local government headquarters to be registered and INEC staffs will tell them that they are only permitted to register 50 people per day is unacceptable. Our people are now eager to get their voters card for the exercise of their democratic franchise and they must be encouraged and not discouraged to do so. People expectation on INEC is high and my prayer is for them to live up to that expectation for the survival and deepening of our nascent democracy.
APGA just concluded membership revalidation exercise. What is your reaction to the exercise?
The turn out was very impressive. Our members are happy with the exercise. The exercise also afforded those that want to join our party the opportunity to do so. One thing you should know is that our people are in love with APGA and they are proving it with the undiluted support they are giving to the administration of our best labour and pensioners friendly Governor in Nigeria award winner, His Excellency Chief Dr. Willie Obiano. The membership revalidation exercise started well and ended in praises. As far as I am concerned, the membership revalidation exercise is a sign of more good things to come for APGA and Ndi Anambra that have kept faith with our party.
The factional National Chairman of APGA is planning to conduct a primary. What is your reaction to this development?
Point of correction, we don’t have factions in our party. As I said earlier, we only have one leadership of APGA ably led by Ozo Victor Oye. Martin Agbaso and his cohorts are not members of APGA. We don’t know them as card carrying members of APGA, they are impostors. Having said this, I will also use this medium to debunk the claim of Martin Agbaso that the court of Appeal gave judgment in his favour. The appeal in Enugu Division of Court of Appeal is still ongoing and judgment has not been delivered on the substantive matter.