THE Executive Governor of Enugu State, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (fondly known as Gburugburu), is not one of the typical—clownishly pedestrian—governors as could be found in most states, particularly in the South East.
Going by his multi-media pictorials, you would be struck by his captivating awe and feministic mien that bring out the Adonis in him which is enraptured in predictable simplicity of character amid a profundity of unusual humility—even without any physicality of contact. This confirmed performer is one of the most popular governors in Nigeria.
Would you believe that since he became a governor in 2015, he has not, according to a state operative, travelled overseas more than three times? Alas, for his peers in most other states, again, it is a routine pastime amid systemic profligacy by their usually bloated entourages!
After last week’s prefatory in this column, a functionary of the state called me from Enugu and informed me that the pace of diligence of His Excellency was too supersonic so much that his equally assiduous lieutenants (and other subordinates) cannot cope! I just hope they don’t slow him down.
Last week, I served you the appetizer. Today, I dish the main course (the kernel of the triad). Next year shortly before his second-term inauguration, by God’s grace, the epilogue (the desert) of this three-part serial will round off this dispassionate intervention.
Henceforth, nobody (or group) should campaign for second term for “Ekwueme” (a la Chief Femi Adesina) as his prodigious achievements speak volumes. Gov. Ugwuanyi’s gargantuan strides and inerasable imprints in the state are more catalytic to his re-election than any outlandish electioneering. A good product—going by marketing mix—sells itself after unveiling, exposure and introduction to the public. If the product is bad, propagandistic expediency and mass deception futilely come in transiently.
As I established here last week, I have the conviction that, at the opportune time, Gov. Ugwuanyi would be thinking of Igbo presidency and his robust prospects. He should begin to luxuriate on that presently since his re-election is a foregone matter on grounds of his leadership quintessence and currency of exponential endorsements.
Why is it that diligent governors who are superlatively transforming their states and their people do not engage in noise-making while the empty drums who have no substance indulge in dysfunctional information bedlam? I had thought that the obverse should have been the case vis-à-vis adumbration of their good governance profile.
When a governor accomplishes a lot and domesticates leadership integrity, he attains peaceful threshold with his subjects such that even security fussiness gives way to associational freedom with everyone.
The magnitude of development and transformations in Enugu State is so immeasurable that this half-page constrictive platform cannot adequately capture even a fraction of the Ugwuanyi magic. Not even a resort to tight writing or bullet-point approach will suffice because of the extensive nature of the landscape surfeit with structural masterpieces on the appreciable verge of virtual superfluity. It is indeed a revolution in an environment where official graft, mediocrity and surrogacy are the rules of the thumb.
If you are looking for good governance testaments, go to Enugu. For me, I have to return there sooner than later to have a panoramic perception of the remaining grassroots constituents of the state. With what I saw in the capital, it would be unimaginably criminal to think that such developmental initiatives were exclusive to the main cities. At a point, I asked my elder brother—who played host to me—if it was possible to do a mid-term swapping of governors across geopolitical divides or have transfer periods as in international football leagues, which is a modification of my earlier constitutional proposal that governors who excel in their states should be allowed to serve a third term in another state in dire need of credible leadership, transparent and accountable governance and men of impeccable and sterling character like Governors Ugwuanyi, Henry Dickson of Bayelsa State and Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State.
Gov. Ugwuanyi’s greatest achievement, by my own assessment, is his gargantuan investment in human capital development. In executing projects in the state, Gov. Ugwuanyi had never borrowed a dime. Indeed, this falls within the ambience of redefinition of leadership. This is even as the state is officially confirmed as the best state for minimum wage implementation in Nigeria by Labour authorities. I know of a state in the South East with a debt burden of $12 billion deducted from source monthly by the Federal Ministry of Finance before any statutory allocation for further kleptomaniac revelry and conventional slush!
Our subject’s indelible footprints in healthcare, agricultural development, youth and sports, road construction, environmental regeneration, power (energy) independence, water supply, partnership with national and international organizations, housing, transport and local government administration, among other innumerable key performance accountabilities, are manifest and illimitable.
My unimpeachable declaration, for copiously unassailable and illuminative reasons, is that this man is an unusual and an exemplary governor considering all indicative parameters. Overall, the point that needs to be underscored with stridency is that Gov. Ugwuanyi has reengineered and repositioned Enugu State beyond imaginable dimensions, a fact that is nationally and globally acknowledged going by respected institutional awards and testimonials as opposed to negotiated recognition!
He is indeed a man of the people for these reasons and those aforementioned: rehabilitation of multifarious schools, tertiary institutions and model entrepreneurial centres for skill acquisition, building of roads all over the state, novel and holistic urban renewal, mass, potable water provision, upping megawatts, mass transit evolution, ICT revolution and erection of modern markets.
In verifiably evidential terms, Gov. Ugwuanyi deserves all the accolades that come his way now and in the future because of his exemplary leadership style, which I commend to his peers. My supplication for him is that our Creator will continue to navigate and illuminate his trajectory and interminably embarrass him with inspirations, capacity, competency, optimal health, wisdom and knowledge for more laudatory services to humanity.
He may not be loquacious or slavish to the media like most of his governor-colleagues, but his transformative achievements buttress his foray into credible governance. For me, that is what matters most.
Overall, Gov. Ugwuanyi, in five years’ time, would have stamped indelible marks on healthcare, educational regeneration (especially computerization), provision of general social infrastructure (particularly roads), sports development, Igbo renaissance and rehabilitation of ex-Biafra soldiers, among other profound legacies.
Food for thought: It appears to me that ex-lawmakers make better governors than their nondescript counterparts who are usually foisted on the electorate. Just two exemplars: Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (who was in the House of Representatives for 12 years) and Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson, Governor of Bayelsa State. Can you imagine where Imo State would have been today if Senator Ifeanyi Ararume or Hon. Emeka Ihedioha had been the governor instead of the present calamitous degeneracy?