Uzodimma’s one year of excellent service to Imo

By Declan Emelumba 

 

EXACTLY one year ago yesterday, on January 15th  2020,  Senator Hope Uzodinma was sworn in as the seventh executive Governor of Imo State after a tortuous judicial process that led to the recovery of his stolen mandate.

The supreme court declared Uzodinma the validly elected governor of imo State after the independent national electoral commission (INEC) had wrongly donated victory to the opposition PDP. Although it took almost seven months to recover the stolen mandate, the brand new Governor hit the ground running in his bid to fulfill the social contract he had with Imo people.

In his acceptance speech, Governor Hope Uzodinma unveiled his prosperity agenda anchored on the three Rs of recovery, reconstruction and rehabilitation.

Quite aware of the infrastructural deficit the state had suffered under an unconventional and emperonic leadership, Uzodinma realised that he needed to move fast to restore the confidence of people in Government as a prelude to rebuilding the state.

He started with the civil service which had been bastardized by emperors who had no regards for the rule of law. The reform of the civil service which saw to the physical rehabilitation of the state secretariat and provision of water and power supply was rounded up with provision of official cars for permanent secretaries and free buses for civil servants.

Aware of the debilitating effect of corruption in the payroll system, the Governor embarked upon a holistic review of nominal roll of both civil servants and pensioners. This was followed by automation of government financial services. A total of ¦ 2 b was saved monthly from the exercise. That was the amount the cabal had been stealing from Imo people for  many years.

Thereafter Uzodinma moved quickly to address the sorry state of the roads neglected by past administrations. As at today, a total of 57 road projects have been embarked upon by Uzodinma. Out of these, 8 have been completed and commissioned,25 are  nearing completion while the rest are actively on going, including the dualization of Okigwe.. Owerri road and Owerri…Orlu road.

The economic importance of these roads cannot be over emphasized.

Many Imo indigenes and regular visitors to Owerri, the state capital, who were in the state for the Christmas season, confessed to the fact that the roads in the state capital,  which were utterly umotorable a year before, had all been fixed and now motorable.

Just as the roads were being done, the Governor who was welcomed into office by the dreaded Covid 19 pandemic, saw to it that the lives of Imo Citizens were secured against the virus. It is to his credit that through his dogged efforts which gulped billions of naira in provision of health facilities, Imo is one of the states with least infection rates and death.

Arising from that, the Governor also launched  free mobile clinics services for the  rural people in addition to the on going rehabilitation and equipping of the 305 health centers in all the wards in the state.

There are  indeed  even more impressive strides in the health sector. The government has put in place an Emergency Operation Centre(EOC) at Umuguma General hospital, adjudged as one of  the best in the country  by the federal government. There is also an on going 250 bed Specialist hospital for infectious deceases at Orlu   attracted by the State government from the federal government agencies. The government has  built 4 state of the art Isolation and treatment centres in different parts of the state in addition to the provision of 34 ambulances for the 27 local governments and Abuja

On education, the governor has secured a new university for the state,the University of Agriculture and environmental sciences, while Imo State University is being repositioned to return it to its premiership position among the comity of institutions of higher learning in Nigeria.

The building of 305 classroom blocks in all the wards in the state is ongoing while all the schools of nursing in the state de- accredited since 2005 have been re- accredited under Uzodimma’s watch.

It is instructive that long before the endsars protests and the attendant Government’s response, Governor Hope Uzodinma had seen the need to empower the youth to end restiveness and criminality. As at the last count, no fewer than 10,000 youths have undergone skills acquisition programme and empowered by the administration. A hefty ¦ 6billlion naira has been set aside for that purpose.

The governor also rehabilitated the moribund Adapalm Nig ltd ,thus creating jobs for imo youths and stimulating the state’s economy. Through his network of connection, Senator Uzodinma attracted the establishment of a modular refinery in the state, with the attendant employment and economic benefits to the state. A gas plant by SEPLAT was also attracted to the state by the government

It is noteworthy to emphasize that the decadent, corruption ridden manual payroll system which the Uzodinma administration inherited has given way to an automated system which has reduced corruption to its minimum while ensuring that workers and Pensioners are paid upto date.

Apart from these tangible achievements of Governor Hope Uzodinma in just one year, he has reduced the political tensions that pervaded the state before his emergence. And this is  because he is running an  inclusive governance where everyone is carried along. In just one year, he held three stakeholders meeting to ensure that everyone was carried along in government’s policies. Consequently, the fear of domination and marginalisation has been erased because Governance is no longer a personal and family business.

The palpable dominant political culture that His Excellency Senator Hope Uzodinma has entrenched in imo State within one year in office is that of vision, honesty   accountability   accommodation, service delivery, courage and above all the fear of God.

As he marches on confidently to his second year in office it is certain that Imo is not only looking up but is set to be counted among the leading lights of the nation.

 

  • Emelumba is Imo State Commissioner for Information and Strategy



Source: The Nation

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