THE TOWN PROFILES

Name:
Umueri(Mispronounced Umuleri)

Location:
Anambra East LGA of Anambra State.

His Royal Highness
(Traditional Ruler)
 


H.R.H Igwe Sir Ben Emeka
Igwe Okebo II of Umueri

His Majesty
(Traditional Prime Minister)


HRM Mike ekweonu
Onowu Iyasele  of Umueri

P.G Umueri General
Assembly (UGA)


Hon. Pius Okonkwo
(President General, U.G.A)

Title(Male):
Amanwulu,Ivejioku,
Oba,Asammuo
Ogbuevi,Ogbuanyinya

Title(Female):
Ekwe, Iyom,Nne-
Mmanwu,Okomme

Population:
Est. 155,000.00

Occupation:
Farmers,Fishers,trading
business,Crafts & Arts etc

 

Clans(Quarters) in Umueri

Exclusive Interview with Hon. Asika Offodile

GULF ONE ON ONE INTERVIEW HELD ON 24TH OF NOVEMBER, 2011 WITH THE CARETAKER COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN, ANAMBRA EAST LOCAL GOVERNMENT OF ANAMBRA STATE, HONE ASIKA OFFODILE.

The Profiles of Hon. Asika John Offodile( Chairman, Anambra East Local Government)


Hon. Asika John Offodile is the Caretaker Committee Chairman Anambra East LG. He is a Chieftain of All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA). He was born on 1st December 1973 to the family of Chief Oyawu Offodile of Amukwa Adegbe Village of Umueri. At tender age, he was educated at Obinetiti Primary School,Umueri . Later he enrolled into Career Community Secondary School Umueri where he obtained his SSCE in a flying color. He has since obtained his first degree (B.Sc) in Political Science from the famous Lagos State University. He is currently on process of acquiring his Master degree in the same University before he was elevated as the Local Government Council Boss on June 2011. He is an accomplished entrepreneur, Politician & Director Emglo Investment Ltd, Lagos. In this exclusive Interview, the Amukwa-Adegbe Umueri born Politician bares his mind on the Programmes of his Governments, the Challenges that he faces, the crisis that engulfed the area, his efforts towards curbing the crisis etc.


Below here are extracts of the Interviewed conducted by our latest Sensation, resourceful & ever inquisitive Reporter, Ms. Ebele Ifedioramma. The Interview as usual promises to be lively, entertaining but informative to the growth of Umueri Community. Excerpts:


Umueriland: Good day sir, our reading public would like to know you and your position in this well decorated office?
Chairman: Am Hon Asika John Offodile, the executive chairman of Anambra East Local Government.

Umueriland: How long have you been into this position?
Chairman: I resumed work on the 1st of July 2011 while the appointment was on 14th June 2011. After the appointment, we embarked on seminars and workshops for enlightenment of workers. The factors that brought me into position were due to the fact that Anambra state has not conducted the local govt election. So due to the process that [we] will be involved in conducting Elections; I was appointed as a transitional chairman that will organize the election to make ground conducive for the incoming elective chairman.

Umueriland: How true is this assertion that you are the first Umueri born administrator to occupy this exalted office?
Chairman: You are right. Thou, I heard that a great Son of Umueri, Hon Ebenezer Agbata held the position earlier in 60’s but it was not on record. So am the only Umuerian that have occupied that position in recent time.

Umueriland: One thing always comes to mind when Anambra East LGA is mentioned, the crisis between Umueri and Aguleri always takes the centre stage. As the chairman of the local government what are the challenges you face in your day to day running of the area?
Chairman: [Sign of relieved] Really, It is a well known fact that Anambra east is a volatile ground. Between 1995/1999, we had a communal war [Crises]. After that, there was a peace accord in 2000 when the former president Olusegun Obasanjo came and negotiated for peace between the two communities. There is no problem now [Sounding affirmatively]. Few weeks ago, there was rumor that we are going to have crisis, but I assure you, everywhere is peaceful.

Umueriland:  What have your government done towards improving the security in the area?
Chairman: There is security in Anambra east local government area. I live in the village. The vigilante and police are making frantic effort to make sure that there is maximum security. The security situation in Anambra East has greatly improved than before, so everywhere is peaceful. I assure everybody to come back home and celebrate Xmas in the village. I stay in the village and we are secured.

Umueriland: The primary functions of Local government as enshrined in 1979 constitution include maintenance of roads, streets, drains, culverts, motor parks, public road parks and open space e.t.c. how successful have your government executed these programmes?
Chairman: [Beaming with Smile] Well I must tell you, Anambra [State] is working. Our Governor believes in action. About 176 communities in Anambra state have been benefiting from the government through ANIDS development programmes. When you get to the market, motor parks there is sanity. The ANIDS programme is everywhere making sure that there is development. “ANAMBRA STATE GOVERNMENT IS WORKING” that is my slogan.

Umueriland: Thank you Sir. As the Local Government Chairman, what are you doing towards curbing poor school enrolment in the local government especially in Umueri community where the number of student per school has greatly been decimated?
Chairman: [Cuts in] ....you see this problem is everywhere. When you look at the previous administration before Governor Peter Obi, because of lack of infrastructure and poor funding of the public schools, most of the schools in rural areas collapsed. The governor provided funds for schools. Just last week Monday, the governor handed over about 1040 schools to the missionaries the original owners of the schools and gave out 6 billion naira for start(kick off), so that shows how much our governor cares about the school system in Anambra State as a whole. It takes time and proper management to embark on this project, so soon all the whole schools in our local government will begin to function effectively.

Umueriland:
Recently there was news that most of the Secondary Schools in Umueri would be shut down by State education commission due to poor turnout of students in the said schools . As a boss in the local government and also a leader in Umueri community, what are you doing to ensure that such threat or policy is not executed?
Chairman: I have not heard about this before. This is a mere rumor [Sounding assuring]. It has never been heard that the government shut down schools in the community instead of encouraging people to go to school. So it's a mere rumor.


Umueriland:
[Sight of relieved].Your party, All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) is the ruling party at the state level, how popular is the party in this area? What are you doing so that the government policy will touch the people of Anambra East, particularly the downtrodden in Umueri?
Chairman: [Smiling] APGA is our party and a great party for Igbo race and we urge everybody, all easterners to join our party. There is this slogan in APGA that says "onye ayana nwanneya” and we truly demonstrate it. APGA is a party that has character, just like the character Our Governor exhibits viz; humility, charity and humbleness making sure that the dividends of democracy reach to the rural areas. APGA is not the government of sharing it, but the government of achieving it. As am talking to you now, other people in other states are joining APGA in en mass and in next election, I guarantee you, APGA will make clear grounds in all Igbo land.

Umueriland: The reconstructed General Hospital, Umueri has not been fully functional as other General Hospital in the state despite all the propaganda to that effect. As APGA chieftain what are you doing towards convincing the Governor into commissioning and ensure it is fully functional?
Chairman: [Cuts in again] Like I said before, some people are just there to spread rumors in other to destabilize this administration. The government reconstructed Umueri General Hospital after the 1999 crisis and equipped the hospital. We have hospital beds, two ambulances, all facilities are on ground. The Government is just putting final touches so that they can commission the hospital, then treatment of patients can commence fully. I have notified the commissioner of Health, so I assure you, soon the hospital will be commissioned officially and work will commence.

Umueriland: Apart from statutory allocation from the federal government, how does Anambra East local Government derive its revenue?
Chairman: Anambra East is a rich local government. We call our self "the food basket ' of the state and also oil rich local government. We derive our revenue from our agricultural produce and also we generate revenue from our [various] markets.

Umueriland: What is your greatest achievement that you would like the people of Anambra East to remember you for when you leave office?
Chairman: I think it is too early to mention my achievements. It is not quite long I was appointed but I must tell you, we have many projects going on. We are constructing about 4 primary schools, 3bore holes in 3 communities. There was no light in Anambra East when I resumed office and I made frantic efforts to make sure that there is light. Now we can boast of steady power supply in Anambra East. There are some health centers we are fencing now. In fact, I don’t know how many I will count but it is premature to enumerate my achievements now. By the end of my appointment, most of the projects will be completed, and then I can be able to give proper account of my achievement.

Umueriland: Before we go, what is the relationship between you and Umueri town Union and other communities’ town union in the local government?
Chairman: This is a big question. [Exhales] Everybody in Anambra State knows that the administration of Gov. Peter Obi is an administration that carry everybody along; (town union, traditional rulers, women leaders, Age grades etc), all of them are part of this government. To contact the PG in any community is very easy because it’s inclusive governance. Every month, I usually have meeting with traditional rulers, PG’s and vigilantes. All these is to make sure that every community is been carried along. The state government provide avenue so as to carry every community along.

Umueriland: Before we go, what is the relationship between you and Umueri town Union and other communities’ town union in the local government? After your tenure, what will be your next move politically?
Chairman: I cannot determine tomorrow. Let tomorrow think of it.[Smiling]

Umueriland: Thank you very much Sir. As a youth, what is your advice to Greater Umueri Liberation Forum (GULF) and other Umueri youths for the betterment of the town?
Chairman: Wow! GULF administration is doing well. With Gulf, everybody is been carried along. Gulf is a very educative forum. Now our people can access [every] information about us online. Thanks for advertising and publicizing Umueri. You people have set example for other youths in other communities to emulate. I enjoin people to join Gulf, even me, the day I heard about Gulf, I accessed the internet and I was happy how far you people have taking us. I implore you people to keep it up because it is not easy. I promise to assist Gulf in any way, where necessary. This forum is for our people.

Umueriland: Thank you very much Sir. As a youth, what is your advice to Greater Umueri Liberation Forum (GULF) and other Umueri youths for the betterment of the town? Thank you so much Sir for given us your time despite your busy schedules. We pray that Almighty God will strengthen, protect and give you wisdom that he gave King Solomon so that you can lead Anambra East with peace and unity in Jesus Name Amen.

 


Edited by Ms Geraldine Uju Onochie and Compiled & Proof read by Comrade Biafra Diboh

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