From Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
Governor Chukwuma Soludo of Anambra state has inaugurated multi-million Naira water project built by the Candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, (APGA) for House of Reps election Hon. Dom Okafor, for his alma mater, Boys’ Secondary School, Igboukwu.
Okafor who is contesting for the House of Reps election next month had handed over a completed water harvesting/ reticulation project to the school.
The project was handed over to the school after Anambra State Governor on Thursday, inaugurated it alongside the school auditorium reconstructed by the Old Boys Association of the school.
The water project is a 3000-litre steel overhead water tank, with a one-horse power surface water pump being reticulated round the school so that water can be available at the offices and the premises.
The initiator of the project, Okafor said that his decision was borne out of his desire to solve the perennial water problems faced by teachers and student in the school.
Okafor, who is also an Old Boy of the School, recalled how as a school prefect, they used to suffer a great deal to get water, explaining how the project began.
“Sometime in 2017, I was asked to chair the Inter-house sports in the school and during that ceremony, I did promise that through my efforts and those of my friends, I would embark on this project.
“I saw the need to provide the facility in the school, because having been a prefect in this school, I know what we went through to get water as students those days. And Igboukwu used to have problem of water.
“I felt that I could give a helping hand in that direction especially having been a Rotarian where water and sanitation is a major focus of the Rotary International.
“That was how I started and to the glory of God, it is now completed and the governor is here to commission it,” he said.
The Aguata House of Reps hopeful expressed the hope that the project will go a long way to alleviate the sufferings of the students and teachers in terms of water and sanitation.
“There is also a lodge for corps members nearby, built by one of us and the provision of this facility will provide water for the corps members.
“It is important to state that I started this project in 2017, when I had no political ambition and thank God it is completed. This is who I am and who I will continue to be- a solution provider,” Okafor maintained.
Governor Soludo while inaugurating the water project commended Hon Okafor for the project completed and handed over, saying it is a wonderful thing to get such partnership with private individuals.
Soludo said what Engr Okafor did is in tandem with the development model – Public, Community, Private Partnership, PCPP, which his government has evolved for the transformation of the state.
“Having water running in schools is a major challenge and through PCPP, a lot of infrastructural challenges will be addressed both in the schools and other public places.
“I want to commend Engr Okafor and his friends for undertaking this project. Water is life and by providing this facility, he has given life to people in this institution.
“I also want to appreciate the Old Boys of the school for this auditorium project. I however want to urge them not to relent but to continue to do more for the school.
“This is because the resources government has at its disposal to address the numerous challenges of the people is very little. The communities, groups and private individuals on the other hand, has abundant resources and when they decide to partner the government just like Engr Okafor and the Old Boys did, we will begin to see the change we want in our society,” the governor said.
Soludo also harped on the need for the people to vote for Hon. Okafor in the upcoming Aguata House of Reps election, so as to ensure that he gets the required support to continue to bring democratic dividends to Anambra people.
He said; “If Engr Okafor can do this as an ordinary person, you can imagine what he will do when he gets to the National Assembly.
“He has shown hat he is a man with a knack to touch lives and that is why we must rally round him to ensure that he gets to the Green Chambers. You can be sure that with him there, we will have a better constituency and abundance of constituency projects.”
Earlier in his remarks, the National Chairman of the Old Boys Association of the School, Mr Mike Ezenwankwo, said the event marks a milestone in the efforts of the Old Boys to turn around the fortunes of the school and return it to its lost glory.
According to him, the journey to the inauguration event is the outcome of the collective effort of members of the association.
“When we started some few years ago, we had only 45 members in the association and today, you can see what we have become and the accomplishments.
“The governor coming today was to show him what we have done and seek the assistance of the state government towards sustaining the transformation.
“He has tasked us to do more and with his visit, we are motivated to continue to give in our best towards the growth and development of our alma mater.
“There so many things to be done in the school and this was where we were moulded and it made us who we are today.
“So, we would continue to work hard to give back to the school that made us,” he said.
The event had started with the first session which featured the Annual General Meeting, (AGM) of the Old Boys Association, with the theme ‘2022 Consolidation’ where issues bordering on the progress and development of the school were discussed.
Also, during the AGM, new executives of the Association were elected in a transparent manner to steer the affairs of the association.