From Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
Determined to complement the efforts of Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State in lighting up the state, the Power Tools and Allied Products Dealers’ Association (PTAPDA), Bridgehead Market, Onitsha, has completed and commissioned its over N8 million electrification project.
The traders who procured and installed a transformer, provided poles and cables for the project to power its market at bridgehead, executed the project from savings from the market’s annual levy and did not task any of the traders for it.
The President General of Bridgehead Market, Chief Sunday Obinze who represented Obiano at the commissioning of the project said that the project signified good governance by the leadership of the market led by Emma Anagor.
His words: “This is the first of its kind in the market where traders embarked on electrification project of this nature. I urge other markets’ leadership to emulate the Tools and Allied Market by embarking on meaningful projects like this.
“When I came on board as the president of these markets, the security was poor but the governor Obiano came to sanitize the area and made Onitsha and the entire state secured and a place to live freely. On security, Obiano scored 100 per cent and he built borehole at the market to reduce the suffering of the traders based on water scarcity.
“He promised to give the market N10 million for developmental project and promised to rehabilitate the roads at the major markets in Onitsha. He has done much for the state and we need to support him for a second term. We are assuring him that the entire markets in Onitsha and bridgehead market in particular will give him 100 per cent votes in the 2017 governorship election,” Obinze promised.
He enumerated the various achievements of Governor Obiano to include N20 million grants to each of the 178 communities, payment of salaries when many states were unable to pay, as well as his giant strides in agriculture, education, infrastructure, job creation,building of three giant flyover bridges with beautification of it like the London Bridge in UK.
He also said that when the governor is re-elected, Anambra would feed the whole of Nigeria with its rice, stating that Obiano has done perfectly well in agriculture and that for the first time in history, vegetable and scent leaf were exported to European countries.
“We are strongly behind him for a second term for him to continue and consolidate where he stopped in his first tenure. I urge the traders to complement the efforts of the governor by paying their taxes and stallage fees,” he appealed.
Mr Anagor said that the electricity project was entirely executed by the traders at the market without any contribution from the government or Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC).
His words: “The project lasted for two years because we didn’t have the money for the project at hand, what we did was to generate fund and put it in the project until we completed it through the prudent management of the meager resources.
“So, it took us 24 months to buy the transformer and connect to the whole union to one single central unit so that at the end of the market day we put off the light to avoid fire outbreak or power upsurge in the market. The project costs us over N8 million.
“We remain grateful to the general manger of EEDC for facilitating the job for us, when he saw our genuineness and openness he helped us to make things easier for us. We need good drainage system from the government because during the rainy season the market will be over-flooded. We used our meager resource in fighting the flood but to no avail, we call on the government to come to our aid and provide good drainage system in the market and we also dug borehole at the market.
“Governor Obiano is one of the governors who remained afloat while others are sinking; he is one of the governors that are still paying workers their salaries despite the fact that Anambra State is not an oil-producing state, so we have to give him kudos. I think one good tenure deserves another, he deserve a second tenure.
“My advice to traders and market union leaders is that, you should not aspire to be in position just to be there or to amass wealth, but to aspire with the intention to embark on people’s oriented projects and go on service delivery so that at the end of your tenure in office your project will speak for you.”
The Chairman of the electricity project, Mr Anthony Enuka said that they did not task any trader for the project, but utilized the money realized from the annual levy to embark on the project.
He said that the project was completed based on the determination of the chairman of the market, Mr Anagor who always provided money as he was determined to complete the project this year.
“I want to say that our chairman inspired us to carry out the project without double mind due to his transparent nature. The money released to the project committee was used judiciously that made us to deliver the project at the appropriate time and we give God the glory,” he said.
A trader at the market, Mrs Ngozi Udenna commended the leadership of the union led by Anagor for embarking on the gigantic project since the establishment of the market.
“I don’t know that we still have sincere people in leadership today. I didn’t believe that this project will be completed when they started it because I thought it was only government that can provide electricity to the people due to the money involved. I want to thank the chairman for this project, this type of people should be allowed to be in state and national leadership, we need people like this man to be governor or president to give the people basic amenities.
“Nobody has come to me to collect money for this project, it is the same amount I pay yearly that I paid and that is why I’m surprised because in some places the chairman would use the opportunity to extort money from the traders, but in this case, no way. We are happy to have light in the market courtesy of the execute of the market and we are going to support him if possible to continue to be in office in order to give us good leadership like this,” Udenna declared.