Anambra, Obiano And The Legacy That Matters


Chido Nwangwu. Image via This Day Live

Chido Nwangwu commends Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State for completion and getting all operational approvals for the state-owned airport

Regardless of the scale of the Governor Willie Obiano’s achievements and areas of challenging circumstances, he has with one strategic and multi-valuable project, earned a positive narrative about his legacy. It has been changing whereby the trajectory of acclamation has moved to his side.

In the eyes of the masses, stakeholders and middle class in Anambra, the man has lived up to his traditional title of ‘Akpokuedike’.

After all, they now ask with a level of regard for doggedness and tenacity: Is he not the Man who built for our people this international airport?

Is he not The Man who got the airport’s permits and certifications, fixed and fulfilled the date for its commissioning?
Is he not The Man who….

Therein lies the centerpiece, grassroots’ definition of the man and his new redemptive stature of bringing to reality one of the foremost infrastructural legacies in Anambra’s history.

Willie Obiano, technocrat and retired banker of international repute, philanthropist and cultural custodian, devout Catholic, a man with a versatile sense for humour was sworn in — the afternoon of March 17, 2014 — as the Governor of Anambra State. Thus, began his first term of four years.

I was there in Awka and at his country home, Aguleri — at his invitation and those of the First Lady Ebelechukwu Obiano. I am one of their pre-governorship friends who flew in from Houston, Texas and other parts of the world.

Willie is in the final weeks of the 8th-year of a second 4-year tenure. It is expected to end on March 17, 2022. How time flies!

At the end of the day after any leader’s tenure, the bottomline debate is all about legacy!

This is important because the politics and battle for power in Anambra State are combative, cacophonous and competitive.

Beyond all the partisan chatter, here’s Why I think the Anambra International Airport will be Obiano’s most enduring legacy.

A majority of Anambra businesses, professionals and communities in Nigeria and internationally across the Diaspora commend their outgoing Governor, WIllie Maduabrochukwu Obiano, and the Anambra State Government for completing at a record time, commissioning and securing all the necessary security items, safety and health equipment, standardization requirements, appropriate certifications for logistics and approvals which since gave them the green light to commence business.
These conclusions are derived from the USAfrica News Index for October 2021 to February 2022.

In the closing weeks of the year 2021, and into the first quarter of 2022, the airport started gaining patronage.
It made travels into and out of Anambra during the last Christmas season of 2021 more convenient and offered a viable choice into 2022.

I am aware that the Anambra International airport has the realistic potential to be a catalyst towards an expansion of business activities, eco-tourism and investment opportunities in the state which possibly has the highest number of indigenous billionaires — per square kilometer — in the African continent!

But Anambra’s battalion of doubting Thomases and perennial critics did not relent.
Remember, they proclaimed in public and private places, giddily and recklessly, that they were the only ones with “access” to the federal authorities and Nigeria’s President Mohammadu Buhari listens only to them on all issues concerning Anambra, the Igbo, etc!

The Obianos & Co were counted out in virulent pronouncements emanating from quarters I will classify as Prophets for Hire and Political Entrepreneurs.
Merchants of false but thunderous ‘visions’.

I think that those who still make the argument that Governor Obiano has nothing significant to show before he exits on March 17, 2022 are simply being unfair.
Without a doubt, the man has his share of challenges — like most human beings.
Willie Obiano (whose instructive Igbo name is Maduabrochukwu -no human being is God) and the APGA political movement (party) he belongs to were counted out , I dare say, prematurely, by squads of partisan hell-raisers and impatient political undertakers.