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Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Agulu-Awka Community Secondary School Cultural Carnival: Hon. Emeka Igwe Calls For More Cultural Awareness

With culture being a way of life for our people, it is necessary that we get our children acquainted with our cultural orientation.

Hon. Emeka Igwe made the above assertion while giving his address as the Distinguished Chairman of the occasion during the Community Secondary School Cultural Carnival and Fundraising event, held today inside the school premises.

Igwe, who was unavoidably absent, was duly represented by the DG of his Campaign Organization, Chief Obi Mbonu (Agbalanza), former APGA Vice Chairman, Anambra Central.

He affirmed that the students will one day make a greater change and make the world a better place for every single parent.

"I see these children as future mothers and fathers who will in turn influence their generation by imparting into them, the virtues and morals they have learnt"

Speaking about the connection between culture and our igbo identity, he stated, "Our Igbo culture for instance is our characteristic and it is defined by everything from language, religion, cuisine, social habits, music and arts."

Finally, he called on all students and staffs to try all their able best to love, feel proud and project our culture.

Students who later, in their colourful cultural attires, divided into nines separate houses, conducted themselves round the school field at the admiration of their parents, school staff, dignitaries and their fellow students.

Judges were on ground to assess, observe and rate the various houses through various igbo traditions the students were made to undertake and at the end three outstanding houses emerged.

Presenting victory cups to the top houses, Hon. Emeka Igwe, emphasised that there is bright hope for the students and indeed for Agulu-Awka. In his usually self, he made donation to support the school fundraising and also promise tackle some of the problem mitigating against the smooth operation of the school.

In the same vein, the father of the day, Chief Peter Anekwe, who is the Chairman of Ulonese, also made personal donation to the course and also presented the first position trophy to the winning house.

He promised the school administration that Ulonese will sit down and look at the issues bothering the school and will communicate to the principal the role the group will playing.

Mother of the day, Hon. Chikodili Nonyelu, in particular, tasked parents to support the effort of the teachers, saying that the everyone has a role to play.

Hon. Nonyelu who also made donation, enjoined parents to always make themselves available whenever the school authority seek their presence.

Various cultural performances were done by the students and the highpoint of the event was when the Igwes of all the houses were asked to conduct the traditional breaking of kolanut.

Emmanuel Aniagoh

Gov. Obiano Gives Okada Operators A ₦765m Lifeline To Become Shuttle Bus Owners

Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State has set aside ₦765,000,000 for commercial motorcyclists in the state to enable them to purchase shuttle buses following the government’s decision to restrict them from operating in Awka, the state capital, and Onitsha, the Southeast commercial hub, from July 1.

The funds will be accessed through the Anambra State Small Business Agency (ASBA).

Existing commercial motorcyclists, popularly known as Okada operators, will take delivery of the buses once they deposit ₦100,000 with ASBA, undertaking to make payments every two weeks, according to the Anambra State Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Mr C. Don Adinuba, who disclosed that the interest-free loan can be repaid within a year and a half.

The shuttle buses will cost between ₦700,000 and ₦800,000 each.

The first set of 200 units of the 1000 buses in the scheme will arrive in the state anytime from now from Japan.

Mr Adinuba, in a statement, said that the Obano administration decided to phase out Okada operations in Awka and Onitsha so as to economically empower the operators and quicken the process of turning the state into a modern place like Dubai.

“A situation where some members of the public have been made to believe that they cannot rise beyond the level of Okada riders is unfair and offends good conscience”, the commissioner noted.

“Governor Obiano wants commercial motorcyclists to get to the next level by becoming bus owners.

“Bus ownership will generate far more revenues for the present Okada riders because whereas a motorcyclist is not allowed to have more than one passenger at a time, a shuttle bus can carry as many as seven passengers”.

Adinuba said that another reason for the decision to phase out Okada operations in the stae’s two leading cities is the plan to make Anambra State the “Dubai of Africa within the next few decades, a status which no place can attain by making Okada dominate the entire landscape”.

He also stated that the high rate of serious road accidents involving Okada riders and their passengers is another reason for the restriction.

He declared: “Up to 70% of accident cases in orthopaedic and other hospitals in Anambra State and beyond involve commercial motorcycle crashes, and it is not right for any government which cares for the welfare and future of its citizens not to do anything about this phenomenon considering that the safety of every individual is the primary constitutional responsibility of the state”.

What is more, he continued, “many robberies and other violent crimes throughout Nigeria have been traced to people using commercial motorcycles. We do not want anything which can compromise our hard earned reputation as Nigeria’s safest state”.

The Information Commissioner disclosed that Anamba did not follow other Southeastern states to restrict Okada operations when they did because Obiano was developing a scheme to “provide the people of the state with superior services and make the Okada operators more productive agents of our economy.

“The delay is worth it because Governor Obiano did not want the Okada operators to be out of employment. What is more, we are today proud of our record as perhaps the only government in Nigeria’s history to provide Okada riders with buses”.

Meanwhile, the Anambra State empowerment programme for commercial motorcyclists has been generating reactions.

The chairman of the Okada Riders Association in the state, Jude Udegbe, described it “as another evidence of Obiano’s humane nature” while the chairman of the state branch of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Jerry Nnubia, called it a welcome development “which has the potential to dramatically improve the lives of Okada operators and reduce the crime rate in our state”.

The chairman of the Trade Union Congress (TUC) in the state, Comrade Ifeanyi Okechukwu, said it shows that “the governor’s second tenure will witness a radical improvement in all sectors”

Hon. Aniunoh To His Constituents: 'This Office Belongs To Us All'

In his usual self of socializing with his constituents, Hon. Patrick Aniunoh, Member, representing Onitsha South 1 Constituency, at the State House of Assembly, earlier today received in audience the entire principal officers of APGA from his constituency at his assembly office.

The principal officers, were in Awka,Prof. Dora Akunyili Women development Center, for a one day workshop put together by Anambra State Working committee (SWC) of APGA, under the Leadership of Chief Sir Norbert Obi KSJ (Ugobuezennunu), for members of the State working committee (SWC), Local Government Executives and Ward Executives of the party, to discuss ,learn and, re-strategize the way forward ahead of 2019 general elections and beyond.

Shortly after the event, they paid an unscheduled visit to the distinguished honorable, the performing lawmaker who runs a open door policy. It was a moment of revalidating his undying promise to his constituents and assuring them of his continuous dedication to their progress and that of the constituency.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Obiano Vows To Clampdown On Youths Involve In Cult-related Activities, As Police Parades Suspects

The Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, has decried the incessant killings caused by cult rivalries.

He said there would be no room for deviant behaviours in the state, especially among the youths.

Obiano stated this at a summit of traditional rulers in the state held at Government House on Friday.

The summit had the theme: ‘Governor Obiano’s landslide electoral victory and the making of a united and greater Igbo nation.’

The governor, who reminded the people that the law was no respecter of anybody, said, “I will clampdown on deviant behaviours and cult-related activities in the state so as to restore peace and tranquility.

“We must revive our youths. Many of them have gone astray. We have mapped out various measures to engage them in meaningful projects.

“These misguided youths need proper re-orientation and enlightenment to align them toward pursuing positive and meaningful goals.

“The traditional rulers should assist in the fight against cultism in their respective communities. You know them and they must be identified.”

The governor’s admonition was coming as the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Garba Umar, raised the alarm over growing activities of secret cults.

He said within two weeks, 16 persons were killed by suspected cultists in Awka, the Anambra State capital.

Umar said 35 cult suspects had been arrested across the state within the period under review.

He asked community leaders, religious leaders and the general public to play their  roles towards ensuring peace by availing the police and other law enforcement agencies with useful information.

The commissioner said the police would be compelled to charge the suspects for murder.

He said the suspects  engaged in other forms of criminal activities such as armed robbery, extortion and housebreaking.

He added,” In the past few days, activities of secret cults in the state have taken an alarming dimension following a fierce battle of supremacy between rival cult groups leading to loss of lives and wanton destruction of properties.

“These dastardly acts perpetrated by misguided youths usually under the influence of hard drugs use offensive weapons such as guns, machetes, knives and so on to intimidate, assault, maim and even kill their perceived rivals, including innocent citizens in the state.”

Umar said his strategies had started yielding  results with the arrest of  35 suspected cult members belonging to different groups from various black spots within the state particularly in Awka, Obosi, Enugu-Ukwu and Okija.

He listed the items recovered from them to include:  one AK 47 rifle; one English Bareta pistol; two locally made double barrelled pistols; one single barrelled short gun, fifteen rounds of 7.62 live ammunition; three cartridges and a red Toyota Matrix car with registration number Lagos EKY 879 EN snatched from one Evbadolovi Omorogbe at Benin City, Edo State.

By Tony Okafor

Anambra Govt Commences Revalidation Of Land Title Documents As From June 25

Anambra Government says it will soon carry out revalidation of title documents in some of the Government Layouts in the state.

The Commissioner for Lands, Mr Nnamdi Onukwuba, said on Monday that the revalidation was aimed at ascertaining the genuine plot owners and to determine the current status of every allottee.

“It is also to ensure that genuine plot owners receive the new digital Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) that will give their property `absolute legitimacy’.

“The ministry is, therefore, inviting all plot owners within the affected layouts to come forward with original copies of relevant documents, including proof of ownership for the revalidation.

“The exercise, by the Ministry of Lands, is scheduled to begin on June 25 to Aug. 13, 2018 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Mondays to Fridays),’’ Onukwuba said in a statement.

“The exercise will cover Onitsha GRA, Trans Nkisi (Phases I to III), Akpaka Layout, Harbour Industrial Layout, Fegge-Nupe Settlement, Niger Bridge Head, Niger Bridge Industrial Layout and Nkwelle Ezunaka Agric Lands.

“In Awka, the affected areas include Agu Awka, Iyi Agu, Ikenga and Ikenga Extension, Expressway Layout, Hill Top, New Town, Isiagu and Lockwood Layouts.

“Others are United Layout, Nkpor, Nkpukpa Layout, Obosi, Parcel D and Oba International Airport.

“The rest are Eme Court Layout Nnewi, Unity Layout Nnewi, Otolo-Utu Layout, Nnewi, Industrial Layout Ozubulu and Orifite-Nnewi-Ozubulu Layouts.’’

Onukwuba adds: “The revalidation will hold at two designated venues — Dolly Hills Hotels and Resort for those within the Onitsha axis — covering Trans Nkisi, Akpaka and GRA.

“Another centre will be located at the Ministry of Lands Headquarters, Awka, where designated staff will also attend to allotees in the Awka area.’’

He directed the allottees to come forward with two recent passport photographs, original copies and photocopies of the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O).

“They are also required to come with all payment receipts, including receipts for Ground Rents, valid identification, like National ID cards, valid Driver’s licences, International Passports or Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs).

“Other requirements are Sworn Affidavits and Police extracts, in case of loss of original documents.

“Any plot not revalidated within the period will be regarded as unallocated and shall be recovered by the Anambra State Ministry of Lands’’.

Obiano Encourages Ndi Anambra To Exploit FG jobs

Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State has lamented over what he saw as recurring apathy by indigenes of Anambra state for Federal Government appointments.

Of particular concern to the governor was the ongoing recruitment by the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) and the Nigeria Prison Service, “…where slots allocated to indigenes of Anambra State are either lost or taken up by other applicants claiming to be from Anambra State”, he bemoaned.

In a statement by the Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, Mr. CDon Adinuba, noted that “the attention of the Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano has been drawn to a recurring low turnout of applicants for job opportunities into federal Institutions leading to a situation where slots allocated to indigenes of Anambra State are either lost or taken up by other applicants claiming to be from Anambra State.

“To correct this trend, the governor wishes to encourage all eligible applicants with University Degrees, HND/OND, NCE, SSCE/GCE and other requisite or special/technical qualifications to check online and urgently apply for appropriate positions in the ongoing recruitment exercise of the Federal Road Safety Corps and the Nigeria Prison Service.”

He therefore charged parents, guardians, community/ religious/ organizations and stakeholders to encourage the eligible youths take advantage of opportunity to gain employment and ensure that the state’s slots in the Federal Civil Service were promptly taken up by the relevant persons from the state.

In an interaction, Adinuba urged journalists to assist in explaining the full benefits of taking up the slots meant for the state in every federal establishment. He feared that if the trend did not change, the state might lack in some key statutory appointments and positions like Permanent Secretaries, etc.

By Chuks Collins

No Going Back On Okada Ban - Gov. Obiano Insist

The Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, has said the ban on commercial motorcycle operators, known as okada, in Awka and Onitsha is irrevocable.

He said the enforcement of the pronouncement would begin on July 1 as earlier given.

This is coming amidst protest by okada operators who claimed that 15,000 of them would lose their jobs should the decision be implemented.

But speaking at the 2018 Annual Seminar of Anambra State Traditional Rulers Council in Awka, Obiano insisted that there would be no going back on the ban.

He said, “There is no going back on the directive. The ban will be for commercial motorcyclists operating in Onitsha and Awka and their neighbouring towns.

“Government is making alternative arrangements to provide shuttle buses to cover as many routes as possible. Transporters should take this opportunity to invest in shuttles and tricycles to complement government’s efforts.

“The state government has designed a hire purchase arrangement where the motorcycle operators will be provided tricycles and shuttles and they pay in instalments over a period of time in consideration of the plight of the people who may be affected by the ban.”

By Tony Okafor

Monday, June 11, 2018

Anambra State House Of Assembly Called Upon To Enact Stiffer Penalties For Cultists

Stiffer penalties have been advocated for those engaging in cultism to check its ravaging effects in the society.

Reacting to the recent arrests and parading of thirty-five cult members by the State Police Command during a radio programme in Awka, a Civil Rights Activist, and the Special Assistant to the Governor on Social Welfare, Women and Children Affairs, Mr Onyeka Ebenebe, called for all hands to be on deck to restore sanity in the society.

On his part, a retired Director, Administration and Human Resources, Scientific Equipment Development Institute, Enugu, Mr Emeka Ezekwe, charged parents to be alive to their responsibilities especially in child nuturing and upbringing.

On the issue of herdsmen menace in some parts of the country, and the recent gruesome murder of a widow at her farm land in Nteje, Oyi Local Government Area, the guests, noted that time has come for total investment in local intelligence gathering, using the valuable information from residents on new comers in their various communities and any suspicious behavior.

Some callers to the programme, Tony from Zamfara State, Ezeafulukwe from Ihiala, decried the activities of the herdsmen and called for measures to check the ugly trend.

Farmers Set To Start Utilizing Mobile App To Enhance Agricultural Activities

Governor Willie Obiano says his administration will introduce a Mobile App, for Agricultural Extension and Gamer Information Management System, in the State.

He disclosed this during the inauguration of the 2018 Farming Season at Atani in Ogbaru Local government Area.

According to the Governor, a comprehensive four-year development plan has been evolved for different agricultural produce and farm types to increase productivity and effective land utilization adding that what his government aims to achieve in the coming years, is an agricultural system that will feed the people, protect the environment and return investments.

He disclosed that Government is to spend the sum of four point one billion naira on very strategic agricultural development initiative in the 2018 planting season.

The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Audu Ogbeh represented by a Regional Director in the Ministry, Sir Nnamdi Ibezim, said the Obiano administration has distinguished itself by its effective implementation of good Agricultural policies, adding that the Ministry is proud of what the Governor has done in encouraging farmers to improve their practice.

In a goodwill message, a representative of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Chuks Sokari said the Bank is poised to work with the State, to create jobs and alleviate poverty through Agriculture.

In an address, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Mechanization, Processing and Export, Mr Afam Mbanefo, explained that the Obiano administration is desirous of empowering, more small holder farmers across the State.

The event which has as its theme, "Developing Modern Agriculture through Cluster Farming Sustainability ", also witnessed the inauguration of Cluster-based Farming initiative in the State as well as distribution of Motorbikes, farm inputs and machineries to registered farmers across the State.

In Ihiala, Man Buries His Father With A Brand New BMW (PHOTOS)

So many bizzare things happen this day and just in Mbozi, Ihiala Local Government Area, a man called Azubuike has gone viral after a photo of how he buried his father surfaced on social media. 

Azubuike who shocked residents when he recently lost his father and decided that to honour him he needed to bury him in a luxurious car that would be used as coffin.

A photo of deceased being buried six feet under in a BMW went viral on Facebook. It could be seen that people were gathered around to witness the shocking incident. It was also gathered that the BMW was bought brand new for the burial.

Many Nigerians on Facebook were furious with the rich man, stating that he is making a mockery of his father while others noted that he should have used the money to develop his village.

#ObianoEffect : Commissioner Of Police, Mr Umah Leads Nigerian Security Contingent to Russia For World Cup 2018

Since the inception of Governor Willie Obiano administration, the State has earned the status of the safest state in Nigeria due to its high security apparatus put in place by him.

Therefore, it wasn't surprising seeing the police commissioner of the most secured state in Nigeria, Mr Garba Umah, leading Nigerian security contingent to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

The Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, in the state, Haruna Mohammed, made this disclosure ton Sunday in a press statement in Awka, the Anambra State capital.

He said the commissioner had since departed for the national assignment.

The PPRO however enjoined the people of the state not to relent in maintaining peace and order during the commissioner’s absence from the state.

The statement read partly, “The Anambra State Police Command wishes to inform the general Public that the Commissioner of Police Anambra State Command, CP Garba Baba Umar, is leading the Nigerian security contingent for the 2018 FIFA World Cup to Russia and that he has since departed.

“The CP further urged all Ndi Anambra not to relent in their ongoing cooperation to the Command towards promoting safety and Security in the State, please”.

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