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Wednesday, January 23, 2019

INEC Records 2.5m Registered Voters In Anambra

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says the numbers of registered voters in Anambra State has risen from 1.7 million to 2.5 million in recent time.

Speaking at flag off of campaign against invalid/void votes held at Fegge, Onitsha South Local Government headquarters, Mr Ndubisi Nwokeabia, the INEC’s chief orientation and mobilisation officer, said the increase signaled tremendous improvements in the political fortunes of the state.

According to him, the success story was as a result of the state government, who he said had vowed not to leave any stones unturned in developing and creating political awareness at the grassroots.

He, however, maintained that the challenges of invalid and void votes during election require proper education and critical information to enable the electorate fully participate on the 2019 poll.

Also speaking, Mr Ogunsheye Olayinka, the Onitsha South independent electoral commission (INEC) electoral officer, disclosed that the turnout of people who came to collect their Permanent Voters’ Card (PVC) at the Ward to Ward exercise was encouraging, but noted that challenges they encounter were double registration, defaced cards and omission of names.

Mr Olayinka further urged political parties to reach out to electorate at ward level to educate them on how to vote properly in order to avoid invalid/void votes.

On his part, the Caretaker Committee Chairman of Onitsha South Local Government Area, Mr Emeka Asoanya, urged candidates of various political parties to embark on issue based campaign rather than name calling and hate speech.

Army, Police, 1,576 Teams To Participate In 2019 Anambra Football Season

The Nigerian Armay, the Nigeria Police, the Nigerian Navy and about 1,578 football teams y will take part in the 2019 Anambra Football Season billed to kickoff on Feb. 1 at a yet to be announced date.

Tony Oli, Chairman of Anambra Sports Development Commission (ASDC), made the disclosure at the pre-season and tournament news conference on Tuesday in Awka.

Participants at pre-season parley include ASDC Sports at the local governments, primary and secondary school education officers and representatives of the the institutions that will play in the competition.

He said the football season which was inaugurated on Nov. 30 last year would end at the Chuba Ikpeazu Mini Stadium, Onitsha on May 27.

Oli said ASDC branded footballs had been distributed to all participating teams.

According to him, 1, 062 primary schools will compete in the U-13 Kiddies Cup, while 258 Secondary schools will jostle for the Governor’s Cup in the Academical game.

He said teams from 63 markets would trade tackles in “Market Exchange” for the Traders Cup, while 179 Communities will play for the Kings Cup or Community Shield and eight tertiary institution slug it out in the Unigames Cup.

“We also have Security Challenge Cup where football teams from Police will play against DSS, Navy against the Army, Immigration against the Prisons Service and NSCDC against FRSC in their opening matches.

“In all there are six cups and they are going to run concurrently from the official kick off on Friday.

“Part of our support to ensure the success of the programme is the procurement of standard branded football which have been distributed to all participants,” he said.

The chairman said the primary school games would be played on Fridays, while that of the the secondary schools would be on Saturdays.

He said that part of the purpose of the football seasons was to awaken sports consciousness among the youth, communities, security agencies and school children.

Oli urged local government education and sports officers to ensure that the programme ran through smoothly, adding that the leadership of the schools and organisations represented were expected to kit and mobilise the teams.

“This is aimed to raise football to enviable height in Anambra, we want to restore the golden days of our state in sports.

“It is part of the conscious efforts at achieving that purpose, the governor has given his support and I urge us all to make it work.

“The semi-finals for May 1 and a full month for the final match on Children’s Day at the Chuba Ikpeazu Stadium Onitsha,” he said.


Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu (Ikukuoma) Gets Rousing Endorsement At Orumba (PHOTOS)

The various Wards in Orumba South Council of Anambra State went agog yesterday as the frontline All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) Anambra South senatorial candidate and the incoming people's senator for the zone -Prince Nicholas Chukwujekwu Ukachukwu (Ikukuoma)and his entourage stormed the area.

In his welcome address, the chairman of Owerre-Ezukala ward 2, Mr Okey Nwosu disclosed that only APGA exists as long as Owerre-Ezukala was concerned.

He assured that APGA would have massive bloc vote in the coming general election.

Prince Ukachukwu who was humbled by the rousing reception and reassuring words from the citizens thanked them for their support and used the opportunity to remind them to vote for him and other APGA candidates in the next month's general election so as to consolidate on the good ideologies of APGA in the state.

In his speech the party's candidate for the Orumba Federal Constituency, Chief Okwudili Ezenwankwo(Ewepudike) called on the people to ensure they vote for APGA in the three stages of Senate, House of Representatives and state Assembly elections, come February 16.

Barr. Raymond Onyegu the local government chairman for Orumba South council maintained that Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu (Ikukuoma)is a household name in Anambra South senatorial zone and Anambra state in general. He therefore pledged the full support of Owerre-Ezukala to Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu and APGA in the coming election.

APGA's State Assembly candidate for the area also enjoined the people to turn out in large numbers to vote for all the party's Candidates.

Sen. Victor Umeh Donates Cash To 53 Indigent Traders, Students

Sen. Victor Umeh, the candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) for Anambra Central Senatorial District on Tuesday made cash donations to 53 indigent traders and students.

Umeh gave the cash to the beneficiaries at a campaign rally in Akwu-Ukwu, Oba and Ojoto communities in Idemili South Local Government Area of the state.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 13 petty traders received N50, 000 each to support their businesses.

The lawmaker also presented N100, 000 to St. John’s Secondary School, Akwu-Ukwu to off-set the school fees of 40 indigent students.

Addrsssing his supporters at the rally, he said that he had provided scholarships to over 70 students in various tertiary institutions.

He also said that he sponsored and empowered 151 youths trained in different skills in 10 months.

He promised to continue to provide quality representation to the people, if re-elected.

He said, “I will always stand against injustice and ensure fairness.

“I have the consistency of character and intellectual capacity to represent you.

“Everybody knows that I am against injustice and I am for fairness and these I will ensure for my people,” Umeh said.

He also promised to attract more constituency projects to the area, if given the mandate for a second term.

He commended the people for supporting the APGA-led government of Gov. Willie Obiano and urged them not to relent.

One of the beneficiaries, Mrs Cordelia Umeadi, who is a food in Akwu-Ukwu, thanked Umeh for the his kind gesture.

Umeadi said the money would help her to boost her ‘beans-and-plantain’ delicacy and put more money in her pocket.

CP Sanctions The Arrest Of F-SARS Impostors In Anambra

The Commissioner of Police in Anambra State, Garba Umar has asked the people of the state to report any police officer claiming to be a member of the Federal SARS in the state.

The appeal is coming on the heels of the recent disbandment of the Federal SARS, Special Investigation Panel and Special Tactical Squad by the Acting Inspector General of Police Mohammed Adamu.

Addressing newsmen on Tuesday at the police headquarters in Amawbia, Umar said there was no FSARS in the state, warning that anybody impersonating an officer was doing so at his peril.

“In tandem with the directive of the new IGP, there is no Federal SARS anymore in Anambra State. But we have what we call the Anti-Robbery Squad which is under my command and control.

“We appeal to the public, anyone that sees FSARS or someone claiming to be an officer of FSARS should please report him immediately to the CP for necessary actions.

He assured that the state SARS was being recognized for better and improved performance.

“Already, we’ve given directives, and we’ve started readjusting and re-organising our SARS for better services,” he stressed.

Amanuke Monarch Rallies Support For Buhari

Igwe Dennis Ezebuilo of Amanuke Kingdom in Awka North, has called on the electorate to support the re-election bid of President Muhammadu Buhari by voting massively for him in the Feb. 16, poll. 

Ezebuilo disclosed this while speaking with news men on Tuesday in Abuja. He said Buhari remains committed to rebuilding the country and must be supported to take Nigeria to the next level.

Ezebuilo said it was time the citizenry embrace patriotism and jettison parochialism, stressing that all hands must be on deck to build the country by supporting the President.

He said Nigeria in spite of its diversity has potentials to be a great nation, adding that Buhari is doing his best to re position the country. Ezebuilo said the President must be commended for the successes recorded in the war against corruption, stressing that corruption has been the bane of the country.

He said prosecution of treasury looters and recovery of looted funds are move geared toward re-positioning the country. Ezebuilo said the signing of Executive Order 004, on Voluntary Assets Income Declaration (VAIDS) aimed at increasing tax awareness as well as reduce incidence of tax evasion is commendable. He praised the President for establishing the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC) -the think-tank of war against corruption which has provided leadership and direction in the fight against corruption.


Saturday, October 27, 2018

Investiture Ceremony: United Nation/Saraphine Outreach Honour Hon. Amb. Comr. Mrs Maryann Eke-Izuchukwu

Every 11th October, the United Nation marks an observance day known all around the world as The International Day of the Girl Child. This observance day, advocates more opportunities for girls, increased awareness on gender inequality, right to education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care and all round protection for the Girl Child.

Observing the 2018 International Day of the Girl Child, Hon. Amb. Comr. (Mrs) MaryAnn Eke-Izuchukwu, Executive Assistant to the Governor of Anambra State on Community Liaison, on October 11 led a walk that witnessed a large turnout in Awka, on campaign against early Girl Child marriage, sensitizing and educating our girls in Anambra.

It was this singular feat, amongst others, that caught the attention of the United Nation in collaboration with the Seraphine Outreach and yesterday she was invested and recognized with the honour, as the Special Ambassador of the Girl Child in the world.

Formally bestowing the investiture on the recipient, at the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs, Amb. Nwosu Seraphine Chioma, a Girl Child Ambassador and the Founder/President of Seraphine Outreach, said she was singled out for recognition because of what she had done for the Girl Child and what she will still do for them in the future.

Commending her courage and steadfastness in speaking up for the Girl Child in Anambra and beyond, Amb. Nwosu also presented her with a symbolic candle, encouraging her to never stop to be the light for the Girl Child.

“Candle represents light and we give this candle to light it for the girl child”. “Wherever there is darkness, please bring up light”.

“Wherever you enter, let light enter for the girl child. Whatever they are doing against the girl child, when you stand do so with this light”, she concluded.

Short of words, Hon. Amb. Comr. (Mrs) MaryAnn Eke-Izuchukwu thanked God almighty for the gathering and also extend same gratitude to those who graced the ceremony. She promised to always do her very best for the Girl Child all over the world and to remain a role model to them.

Fielding questions from the press shortly after the ceremony, Mrs Nwosu, an accomplished publisher who has authored great books like; Have You Taught Your Daughters, Making A Beautiful Marriage, Cooperative Parenting, The True Beauty of a Woman, amongst others, noted that the challenges confronting the Girl Child are numerous. She, nevertheless, mentioned; Early Child Marriage, Domestic Violence, Rape, Child Trafficking, as the major challenges confronting the Girl Child.

To checkmate these indiscriminations and rescue the Girl Child from self destructive habits, Mrs Nwosu, a teacher by profession and a growing generation coach, however, suggested that The Child’s Rights Act be strengthened and implemented in all states.

In the same vein, Hon. Amb. Comr. Eke-Izuchukwu, noted that plans are underway to empower more Girl Child through Education in Anambra, as she and her team will do a tour of the 21 Local Government Area.

And nationally, she called on policy makers to create an enabling environment for increasing gender participation in all sectors and providing a valuable pipeline for the “Educated Girl-Child” to be transformed into women that will be agents of national transformation.

At the ceremony, the Commissioner for Women Affair and Children, Lady Ndidi Mesua, was ably represented by Mrs Ezeanwuna, Director for Girl Child at the Ministry.

Mrs Stella Ogu Ifemezia; Lady Loretta Akudo; Hon. Arinze Okafor; Amb. Oluchi Eze, were among the other dignitaries present at the occasion.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Press Statement: South East NUJ Lauds Gov. Obiano Over Appointment of Journalist As Executive Assistant Political Matters

 Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Zone C (South East) wishes to thank the Executive Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano for finding one of our own, Comrade Abuchi Onwumelu, worthy of being appointed Executive Assistant (EA) on Political Matters. 

We view this gesture as a worthy and fitting recognition and encouragement of hard work and innovativeness. We also acknowledge that this appointment is just one out of many of our colleagues, who serve at different levels and sectors of government in Anambra state under the present regime.

This has added to the already sparkling record and profile of His Excellency, as one of the most media friendly governors in the country. This attributes surely must not go unrecognized at the fullness of time. 

Comrade Onwumelu is the Chairman, Fides Newspaper Chapel of the NUJ, Anambra State Council, and also the Administrator of one of the most vibrant watsapp platforms in the country, Media Practitioners Only (MPO), which has been agent of social change and mass mobilization of media practitioners and none practitioners alike.

As we once again congratulate Comrade Onwumelu for this recognition, we urge him not only to be a worthy ambassador, but to work even harder by discharging his duties creditably and excellently in order to justify the confidence reposed in him by Governor Obiano.

We pray the Almighty Lord to continue to guide and protect the Governor in his onerous task of providing quality governance and leadership to Anambra State - Light of the Nation.


Comrade Petrus Obi

Vice President, NUJ Zone C

Comrade Kenneth Ofoma

Secretary, NUJ Zone C

Friday, September 14, 2018

AKWAABA 2018: Exporting Anambra Paradise

Anambra State, led by the Honourable Commissioner for Indigenous Art, Diaspora Affairs, Culture and Tourism Mrs. Sally Uwechue Mbanefo, took part, along other states, with leading tourism destinations from the Middle East and Africa, in the just concluded AKWAABA Africa Travel Market 2018

The event which was held from Sunday September 9 to Tuesday September 11, 2018, at Eko Hotel & suites, Lagos, presented an opportunity for our dear state, Anambra, which is known as a land of several firsts, to showcase its enormous cultural artifacts and heritage with several tourist destinations.

According Mrs Mbanefo, tourism across the globe is a lucrative business.

"A lot of countries, most especially in the Middle East, get huge revenues from Tourism and nothing stops our state with its diverse tourism endowerments not to be in the forefront of Nigeria's tourism sector" she enthused.

Several cultural artifacts from the State were on display in the exhibition. All these showcasing our rich cultural heritage, God-given natural endowments and unique tourism potentials.

The former director-general of the Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), noted that highlighting and exhibiting our numerous cultural heritage and tourism potentials in this manner would go a long way in drawing the attention of the world, especially potential investors to this sector in Anambra state.

No doubt tourism is the greatest employer of labor and has the potential to drive any nation’s economy.

Mbanefo pledged to use her experience to turn around tourism and create jobs for youths.

By Emmanuel Aniagoh

An Address Delivered By The Governor Of Anambra State, His Excellency, Chief Willie Obiano, At The Formal Launching Of The Anambra State Health Insurance Scheme


I am happy to welcome you all to this event. Ndi Anambra, today marks the beginning of quality, affordable and accessible healthcare delivery in Anambra State. It also marks an end to avoidable suffering, preventable disability and careless death for our people.

After a careful planning, my administration has stepped out to make sure that everyone in Anambra State has a chance to enjoy a quality healthcare service. And when I say “everyone” I actually mean everyone that is living in this great state, including the poor and the rich and the young and the old. The scheme also comes with very special offers for pregnant women and for children under the age of five.

Ndi Anambra, this is a revolutionary scheme. It is probably the most affordable quality healthcare delivery scheme in this part of Africa. With just one thousand naira (N1000) a month per person, we offer a comprehensive scheme that covers preventive care, curative care and rehabilitative and surgical services for a whole year. Ndi Anambra, what this means is that if you register for the scheme with one thousand naira and continue to pay one thousand naira every month, you will get a top quality medical attention for whatever diseases or ailments you might have for a whole year. One thousand naira only!

Indeed, I am very hopeful that our illustrious brothers and sisters shall easily take up the challenge of offering insurance cover to their relatives and to their towns and communities or even local government areas. Since it costs only N12,000 per person per year, I have no doubt that some of our brothers and sister will underwrite this cost for their relatives in the spirit of onye aghana nwanne ya. 

I also urge employers of labour and members of the organized private sector to organize and buy policies for their staff from this scheme.

Similarly, I advise members of professional associations, social clubs and age-grades not to miss this great opportunity to buy a rewarding policy for themselves.
Ndi Anambra, at this juncture, I am delighted to announce to you that Anambra State Government has paid for policies covering ten thousand people from across the state. The modalities for equitable distribution of this offer are being worked out to ensure that every community is adequately represented among the beneficiaries. At the same time, my administration shall pay ten percent in counterpart funding for the coverage of all civil servants and their families by this scheme. So, as you can all see, we are already leading from the front.

Ndi Anambra, my administration has always given the health sector the priority attention it deserves because we believe that ‘health is wealth.’ That is the reason why Health is one of the Key Enablers of my Economic Blueprint.
Essentially, we approach Health from three broad categories. Namely; Primary Healthcare, Secondary Healthcare and Tertiary Healthcare. Interestingly, this administration has recorded quite some impressive achievements in Primary Healthcare Delivery in the past five years. In specific terms, we have renovated 83 Primary Healthcare Centers and provided 63 Keke Ambulances. We also provided 17 Speedboats and 6 Water-ambulances for the riverine communities. Two Escort Life-saving Ambulances were also added to this fleet. In addition, we have finally established the Anambra State Primary Healthcare Development Agency.

Ladies and gentlemen, we achieved even more in Secondary Healthcare Delivery. They include the upgrading of three General Hospitals in the state to a specialist status in each senatorial zone, namely; Onitsha, Ekwulobia and Enugwu-Ukwu General Hospitals. Next is upgrading of Nawfia Psychiatric Hospital and the on-going renovation of 18 General Hospitals in the state for improved services, accreditation and a robust participation in the Anambra State Health Insurance Scheme.

In Tertiary Healthcare Delivery, we also recorded some impressive achievements. They include the successful accreditation of the School of Health Technology, Obosi with 6 Departments, the successful accreditation of Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital (COOUTH), the successful accreditation of the School of Nursing & Midwifery, Nkpor and perhaps more importantly, the accreditation of the final MBBS Programme of Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital to ensure the graduation of the first set of Medical Students from the College of Medicine, Amaku. Other achievements include the accreditation of the Residency Training in O & G, Paediatrics and Community Medicine and finally; the donation of over N747m to Mission Hospitals as well as the sum of N250m in medical support to the vulnerable members of the society.

Ndi Anambra, these are some of the achievements of my administration in Healthcare Delivery so far. We still have a lot of headroom for improvement and we shall not relent until we have put Anambra State on the map for exceptional healthcare delivery.
Ladies and gentlemen, what we are launching here today is indeed a visionary healthcare scheme. I have no doubt that when it hits its operational peak, it will inspire a new thinking in medical insurance in Nigeria.

However, no matter how good this initiative is, it will not achieve its objectives if we do not take ownership of it and give it the support it deserves. So, I urge you all to take a policy today. I also charge all healthcare providers in Anambra State to turn over a new leaf and commit to providing quality healthcare services to our people. Ndi Anambra deserve nothing less than the best healthcare services- in the world!

Long live Anambra State
Long live Nigeria
Willie Obiano

Sunday, September 09, 2018

Nigerian Statistical Association Elects New Officials, As Its 42nd Annual National Conference Ends In Grand Style

Nigeria has one of the best crops of highly respected statisticians in the world.

Evidence of the above statement was seen at the just concluded 42nd Annual National Statistical Conference of the Nigerian Statistical Association, as experts in the field of Statistics converged at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University Auditorium.

The conference with the theme: Statistic For Economic Recovery, Growth and Sustainability, which ran from 5th to 7th Sept., 2018, was declared open by the State Deputy Governor Dr Nkem Okeke, who was  represented by his Senior Special Assistant on General Duties, Mr Charles Nwufo.
Vice Chancellor of Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka, Professor Joseph Ahaneku, represented by the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academics, Professor Charles Asimone and the Director Research Department of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr Uwati who represented the Deputy Governor, Economic Policy Directorate of the APEX Bank, noted that given the overwhelming importance of statistics in any economy, there is urgent need to build a comprehensive, accurate, reliable and easy to access data base. 

Also, the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning Hajia Zainab Ahmed represented by Mr Megida Ishaku, regretted that the economy has been on low Gross Domestic Product, weak downward Market, recession amongst others, and urged the government to collaborate with the Nigerian Beaureau of Statistics to uplift the living standards of the people.

In the course of the conference, several sessions were organized and participants were divided into groups, where papers were presented and discussed by selected analyst.
Role of Statistics in our daily lives, why we needed Statistics and what the society would be without it formed basis of the discussions.

Speaking during the event, the National President Nigerian Statistical Association, Professor Sidney Onyeagu, noted that Statistics is an interesting subject and has been an ancient tool which has been useful in solving problems of interest and understanding the world we live in.
Other notable speakers who share their knowledge, include; Emeritus Prof. Mosto K. Onuoha, President, Nigeria Academy of Science; Tule Moses K., Director, Monetary Policy Department, CBN; Ojijo Odniambo, Economic Adviser, (Nigeria & ECOWAS), United Nations Development Programmes; Hon. Mark Okoye, Commissioner for Economic Planning, Budgets and Development Partners, Anambra State; Dr Maikanti Baru, Group Managing Director, NNPC; amongst others.
Investiture of some fellows into the Nigerian Statistical Association and a dinner night put together to celebrate the association, were some of the highlights of the conference.

Careers and training in statistics are becoming more common in our universities, and statisticians are beginning to play an important role in our society. Statistics derives its power from the positive impact that it can have when it interacts with other fields like science, business, government, services, and research in general.

The conference afforded the experts to look at the challenges and opportunities available to Statisticians and how building and forging statistical curricula may be useful.

One take away from the conference is the understanding that statistic classes should start at the high school level at the latest. Students should be exposed to some type of statistics education. Not everybody needs to be a practicing statistician, but at the very minimum, individuals in decision making positions should know when to use statistics or when to bring in statisticians into the decision making process

The conference ended with the association electing new officers into the professional body.

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