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Obi leaves N75bn savings for Anambra: Okonjo-Iweala, Dangote, Achebe, others eulogise him

Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi said his administration has N75 billion in savings for the state. The governor who announced this during a public presentation of his end of tenure report at the Women Development Centre, Awka yesterday said the money included N25billion investment for the state.

In a further breakdown of the savings, Obi said that expected bank balances as at March 14, 2014 would be N11.5 billion: Federal Government of Nigeria approved refund N10 billion; foreign currency investment (US$155m) N26 billion.

Obi also gave account of the investment the state made in some projects being executed, some of which are N3.5 billion in INTAFACT, N9 billion in Nigeria Independent Power Project; N4 billion in Orient Petroleum Resources PLC; N1 billion in Onitsha Hotel; N1 billion in Agulu Lake Hotel; N0.9 billion in Awka Shopping Mall, N350 billion in quoted investment portfolio, among others.

The Governor explained that his administration received about N620 billion and N20 billion naira from Federal Allocation and interventions from donor agencies and development partners.  He noted that despite the state’s low revenue profile, his government completed over 801 kilometres of roads that gave access to all parts of the state and opened up rural areas. He noted that collaboration with the church transformed and repositioned the education and health sectors to meet the needs of the people. According to the governor, through strategic planning, prudent and transparent management of resources as well as reduction in the cost of governance, his administration achieved integrated and comprehensive development in all sectors without borrowing or owing anybody.  He expressed satisfaction that his government had rescued the state and laid a solid foundation for sustainable development, stressing that the state was not cursed, rather, the people were the cause of its previous challenges.

The Governor-elect, Chief Willie Obiano in his speech assured that his administration would build on the foundation laid by Governor Peter Obi and sustain his interventions in schools and hospitals as well as attract people in the Diaspora and other investors to set up businesses in the state.

Speaking during the event, the former Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Chief Emeka Anyoku said the occasion was a celebration of success in governance that brought recognizable transformation in all sectors through indisputable prudent and judicious use of public resources.  Chief Anyaoku who was the chairman on the occasion stated that Governor Obi scored high in all yardsticks used in measuring good governance and was leaving a legacy of holistic approach in developing the state.

The coordinating Minister of the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said she was proud of the governor and his achievements. She commended his passion to make a difference, which, she noted, made him a model for others.  Okonjo-Iweala noted that the Federal Government was now trying to adopt his education policy and disclosed that Federal Government had plans to keep him close to them.

She recalled that unlike other politicians, Governor Obi completed projects initiated by his predecessors, attracted viable foreign direct investments, encouraged and empowered indigenous investors and industrialists to grow and expand.  While commending his remarkable contributions at the Federal level, she noted that his development-orientated administration attracted commendation of the World Bank and other donor agencies.

Also speaking, a business magnate, Alhaji Aliko Dangote said Governor Obi had earned the respect and admiration of Nigerians and noted that no state had saved so much money and made such investments in addition to mass infrastructural development achieved by Governor Obi.  Alhaji Dangote said the governor’s commitment and dedication should be emulated by other leaders to entrench principles of good governance across the country.  He enjoined the incoming administration to follow his footsteps to build on the foundation already laid.

Other notable Anambra people including Obi of Onitsha, Alfred Achebe and Dr. Dozie Ikedife also said Obi had indeed rescued the state.

Earlier, during an inter-denominational service, Prof. Ben Osisioma said Obi was a blessing, who made indelible mark on the state and country as well as made her an emerging force to reckon with in the country.

Dignitaries on the occasion included Mr. Iyke Aigbode, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife, Ikem Odumodu, Emma Bishop Okonkwo, Aruma Otteh, Justice Peter Umeadi, Bianca Ojukwu, ABC Nwosu, Bishops Valerian Okeke, Hilary Okeke, Aleaxander Ibeziem.

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