The rudimentary legacy of Gov Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi’s administration that enthroned peace in Aninri Local Government Area is tranquillity pervading the state. The administration’s revolution in the local government system by clearing the backlogs of unpaid salaries and allowances to workers re-awakened the hitherto slumbering third-tier arm.
It also uplifted lives of rural people by the first tranche of N5m grant to communities in the state; and enabled communities in Aninri to embark on their need projects. The state government, under the Community and Social Development Projects of the World Bank, is also building bridges at Umuenem and Amachara Uka at Ezinesi, both at Oduma.
The rapid development and peace in Aninri LGA is a result of the adoption of Gov Ugwuanyi’s template by the former council chairman, Hon Ezekiel Chukwu. Hon Chukwu, on assumption of office, visited every community to ascertain their respective problems.
Under the CSDP initiatives, it copiously embarked on the construction of a nine wards’ health centre at Amaeke Oduma; 1.7km high tension and 3.2km low tension electricity at Amaeke Oduma; graded feeder roads and provided 1.5km high tension and low tension with a transformer at Amanasato Oduma; graded and laterited the Agbada Nenwe road and provided electricity at Okpanku and Ohaofia Oduma. At Mpu, it renovated the corps members’ lodge and mounted a gate to provide security.
It also cleared backlogs of allowances owed instructors at various adult education centres; distributed 50, 000 exercise books to pupils in the area; respectively constructed four classroom blocks and an exam hall at King’s College, Amagu, Oduma; and further constructed a primary school at Amachara Uka Ezinesi, Oduma. It also awarded a million naira scholarship to one Favour Ugweke.
The Chukwu administration completed the ultra-modern 2, 000 sitting capacity pavilion at the council secretariat, which attracted accolades from well-meaning people. The council in the past four years also rehabilitated all dilapidated buildings in the secretariat and built a 6, 000 capacity hall at the secretariat.
In line with Gov Ugwuanyi’s administration, the welfare of workers in Aninri LGA is the first-line charge. The Chukwu administration is the first to pay the 2017 and 2018 leave allowances in the state.
Aninri used to be below par in infant mortality rates. This has become a thing of the past with the strengthening of immunization and other health interventions in the area. The council constructed a health centre at Obeagu Oduma and completed Ameke Oduma health centre. At Okpanku, the administration constructed quarters for health workers as well as a health centre. During a recent health outreach organized by First Lady Mrs Monica Ugwuanyi, some serious cases were referred to tertiary health institutions with the council footing the bills. It also awarded a scholarship to a visually impaired, Blessing Ani, and sponsored her eye surgery. The administration periodically provides free medicare to indigent persons. Among other projects the administration did is the fencing of INEC office at Ndiagbo.
Aninri has a comparative advantage in agriculture, which is where its name is derived from. The council curtails farmers/herdsmen’s clashes through regular stakeholders’ meetings, and maintaining cordial relationships with security organizations through provision of logistics for their smooth operations.
Ezekiel Chukwu’s undaunted spirit earned him the nickname ‘nwoke n’eme ike ya’. No wonder several awards have continued to stockpile in his treasure trove. They include Best Chairman on Sports Development by LOGMA; Ambassador for Good Governance by G17; Best Labour-Friendly Chairman by Enugu State NULGE and Outstanding Chairman Award by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
The secret behind these strides is prudence in the management of the council’s resources in line with Governor Ugwuanyi style of leadership.