Tuesday, 18 March 2014

How Obiano took over from ex-Governor Obi(an exclusive Interpretative Report)

By Okechukwu Onuegbu

Commuters had hectic time yesterday in Awka, the capital of Anambra state as her New-Governor, Chief Willie Maduabuchi Obiano formally took over as a substantive Governor from his predecessor, Chief Peter Gregory Obi whose second tenure of 8 years incidentally came to an end.
The historic swearing-in ceremony witnessed an unprecedented mammoth crowd of people as Anambrarians at home and in Diaspora, and Nigeria generally struggled to see their New Governor and the Former at all course thereby constituting traffic gridlock along the ever busy Onithsa/Enugu Expressway, Awka.
Orient Daily observed that Pedestrians who plied roads leading to Government House through Arroma, Unizik junctions and Amawbia bypass respectively, reached their destinations much faster than their counterparts conveyed by motorists and motorcyclists that day.
That is not all! The vicinity of Dr. Alex Ekwueme square where the Governorship oat-taking and handing-over was performed boiled-sweet as petty traders such as newspapers and airtime vendors, sachet water hawkers, mama put (food sellers), Beggars and Okada boys testified bountiful harvests. For-instance, One Miss Ngozi Ike who claimed to have sold 20 bags of pure water (sachet water), pledged to give testimony in her Church on Sunday even as she prayed for a repeat of similar occasion daily.
Recalled that the out-gone Governor, Chief Obi earlier declared public holiday so as to create enabling environment for Civil Servants, pupils and students to grace the occasion, as a result Dr. Alex Ekwueme Square was filled to its brim; no single space was unoccupied even the entrance gate.
Also, banners of different inscriptions were displayed by loyalists of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Religious groups, Associations, Traders, Students Unions, Youth organizations; some herbalists/traditionalists (mostly from Anambra East, Chief Obiano’s council area), Izaga and Zebra Masquerades, Cultural Dancers, Live Bands among others added glamour to the epoch-making event.
Among the dignitaries present at Governor Willie Obiano’s official inauguration ceremony were President Goodluck Jonathan represented by his Special Adviser on Inter Party Affairs, Sen. Ndi-Obi; Nigeria’s Ambassador to Spain and Chief Maxi Okwu’s led National Leader of APGA, Bianca Ojukwu; Anambra state Born Billionaire Engr. Arthur Eze who is the major Financier of PDP in the state; Rt. Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, immediate past Defense Minister.
Others were the Chairman of Southeast Governor’s Forum, Chief Theodore Orji and his wife; A-Chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Sen. Annie Okonkwo; Hon. Uche Ekwunife and Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwogbo of Federal House of Representatives; Traditional Rulers, President Generals, Market Women to mention but a few.
But perhaps, the most intrinsic aspect of the occasion was the manner in which the new-Governor, Chief Willie Obiano; his Deputy, Dr. Nkem Okeke and the erstwhile Governor Peter Obi entered the venue of the grand ceremony in a grand-style. Whereas Governor Obiano and his entourage zoomed-in in a bulletproof car at about 12.30 pm., his Deputy, Nkem and his wife, Oby Okeke arrived thirty minutes later accompanied by Obiano’s Wife, Chief Ebere Obiano and her family members; While Chief Peter Obi and his entourage walked-in at some minutes past 1.pm. However, spectators greeted both personalities with encomium and cheering.
However, this reporter was stunned while discovered that the state out-gone First Lady, Chief Margret Peter Obi dressed in a black attire with white earrings and necklace (wore mostly by widows), unlike the incumbent Chief Ebere Veronica Obiano who was decorated in “a colour riot” attire as the popular “Adanma masquerade”.
Our reporter also observed that she stood firmly on her chair with little smile on her face as the event lasted and left later unnoticed unlike her Husband, Chief Obi who walked round the arena acknowledging cheers. This was unusual of Madam Margret, first time in her history perhaps!  
Another intrinsic aspect of the event was how the former Governor, Chief Obi copiously addressed his successor as “Oga Willie” in a speech. Obi further reiterated that his administration made the state “financially stable and true light of the nation”, while announcing presentation of a bulletproof car to the new governor, reiterating also that Obiano is not his puppet.
On his part, Governor Obiano while taking over the mantle of leadership proclaimed that power has finally shifted from “Agulu to Aguleri, Obi to Obiano”; but enjoined Anambrarians to be law abiding citizens, love and cherish each other, and also called for a corroborative with the people for a hitch free tenure.
He however, pointed-out that the present political dispensation would invest on Oil and gas, Agriculture, Education, industrial revolution and rebuilding of Awka to a befitting state capital; Nnewi and Onitsha to industrial and business hubs of Africa as ought to.



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