FeaturesWe've Done Well To Deserve Second Tenure In Office - Ohaukwu Chairman

We’ve Done Well To Deserve Second Tenure In Office – Ohaukwu Chairman

May 8, (THEWILL)- In this interview with Prince Ikechukwu Odono, the Executive Chairman of Ohaukwu Local Government Area with THEWILL Reporter, Sunday Ogbu, the Council Chairman disclosed his administration’s effort to end insecurity that had ravaged the Council area, especially the over one hundred years war between Agila people in Ado Local Government Area of Benue State and Ngbo in Ohaukwu Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.

Can we meet you, sir?

My name is Prince Ikechukwu Odono, Executive Chairman of Ohaukwu Local Government Area.

Insecurity, especially cult-related clashes, leading to loss of lives has been the bane of this LGA. How have you addressed this?

On assumption of office on September 1, 2022, I started with security. Before my assumption, the part of Ohaukwu called Ukwuagba, there is no week they do not shoot and kill people. It made so many villagers desert their villages. I started with that and since I became the Chairman, Ukwuagba people that ran out of their villages are now back because of the security measures we took.

I want to tell you that in Ohaukwu, there was an issue of cult clashes and other social vices were the order of the day. But today, they are things of the past because since we assumed office, we have never had cases of cult clashes in the Ohaukwu Local Government Area.

There were cases of attacks in your Council by unknown gunmen. Why?

You know, when you are doing something good for your people, some people will still find a way to undermine your efforts. And that is why sometimes you will see some people who call themselves unknown gunmen going around causing havoc. But we are doing everything possible with security agents and stakeholders, to ensure it stopped in Ebonyi State. Apart from that, every other thing in terms of security, we have tackled.

The Agila and Ngbo people have been at war for more than 100 years. What is the situation now?

When I resumed office, I initiated a peace committee to broker peace between the Ngbo people in Ohaukwu Local Government and the Agila people in the Ado Local Government Area. We started by ordering that we did not want any form of shooting for one week, from one week, we entered two weeks and from two weeks, we entered a month, from one month and so on. From then till this moment, there is nothing like shooting or war between Agila and Ngbo to date.

(Cuts in) How was this made possible?

I sponsored the stakeholders from Ohaukwu to Abuja and also to Benue State over this matter. And the Benue people have visited us and today Ohaukwu people can go to Agila and even some people are living there. Agila people come to our market and we exchange things. As I am speaking to you, there is permanent peace between the Ngbo people and the Agila people. This war has lasted for more than one hundred years. But with God’s help, under my administration and with the assistance of the member representing Ohaukwu/Ebonyi federal constituency, Hon. Eze Nwachukwu, the war has been laid to rest. Because at a time, he was doing his own beat in Abuja and I was doing my own here. Today, there is peace between the two warring communities.

The most important thing I have done in my administration is security. Before I assumed office, I felt bad when my people were leaving their villages for other villages. I took this challenge and today they said they want to confer me a chieftaincy title about security that they had left their communities but today they are back to their homes. Also, the war that had lasted for 100 years is no more. Today an Agila man can come to Ngbo and Ngbo can go to Agila.

The day we visited Agila, I went through Ngbo Road and the Agila people came through Okwo and it was so historic. People were happy and jubilating. Because of the peace we have achieved, the Ohaukwu NULGE, State NULGE and the Traditional Rulers gave me the title of Ikeudo, one of the Ohaukwu Local Government Area.

The other day, I was in Effium because of the lingering crisis between Effium and Ezza-Effium. I was there with the military people because we heard of an attack. I was there to make sure of the effort of our Governor to make sure that peace is returned between Effium and Ezza-Effium. All these we are doing and so many others, are to make sure that there is peace in Ohaukwu Local Government Area.

How are you coping with overstaffing in Ohaukwu Local Government Area?

Ohaukwu Local Government Area is the most populated Council area in the state. We have over two thousand civil servants. Sometimes after payment, we will not have enough to put into these projects. My happiness is that the civil servants we are paying are also a form of empowerment for the Ohaukwu people because we have more workers than others. With the little resources left after payment of salaries, we make sure we utilise it on our projects.

Apart from your achievements in the area of security, what else have you done for your people?

We have done so many things for our people. We built a befitting house for a widow. We have empowered so many youths. As I speak to you, I have over forty Special Assistants that I pay every month and that is huge empowerment for the youths. We have empowered our youths in so many areas including in the area of skill acquisition. I have always made it public that rather than engage in criminal activities, come, we will empower you to learn skills. Our records are clear on that.

We have graded so many roads and installed so many street lights and solar lights in Ohaukwu. In terms of agriculture, we have encouraged our farmers with farm inputs like fertilisers among others to ensure food security in the Ohaukwu Local Government Area.

We have also graded so many roads in Ohaukwu. We have graded the Umuogodosha road, linking Umuogodosha to Okposhi Road, Ibenda Road and so many other roads that I can’t remember their locations have been graded in my council area. I did concrete pavement that is close to one kilometre, we have built health centres in Ohaukwu Local Government Area, we have also procured more than sixty motorcycles for our security and vigilantes, we have also shared sienna buses to our youths and stakeholders and to security agents. We have also procured 15 Toyota Corolla and Camry, for the counsellors and leader of the house respectively.

We have empowered most of our youths with motorcycles and also grinding machines and other things. We have done constant empowerment of the widows and less privileged persons.

In the area of education, we have paid the school fees of so many indigent students. We have paid the schools of more than 100 students and also assist some other people to do certain things in school. In the area of health, we visit hospitals and pay their hospital bills. We have also acquired some health equipment for our health centres which were distributed last week. These and more that I cannot remember is what we have done to our people. Therefore, we have done well to deserve a second term in office.

I will tell you that inside the local government area, we have a library that has been so bad for so many years, we have fixed the library and today, the customary court and the NUT are using it. We have also made an effort to make the local government’s surroundings look very neat.

In the market area, we have also built so many lock-up shops for our people and we have a plaza that is 90% complete at Ezzangbo. We have empowered our market women to encourage their businesses. All these and many more we have done for our people in one year and seven months.

Are you sure you have a good relationship with your stakeholders?

I have a good working relationship with my stakeholders except if anybody is feeling offended, I do not know. I am in a good relationship with a majority of my stakeholders. I am not tight-fisted. You know some people believe when you get the money to execute all these things I have mentioned, you should bring it for everybody to share and at the end of the day, you will not have anything you will say you have done for your people. I am on good terms with the majority of my stakeholders.

Concerning the Christmas package, we did our best to make sure that we reached out to our stakeholders. Last December, we paid the workers of Ohaukwu Local Government Area fifty thousand each and in Ohaukwu, we have over two thousand workers.

Are you happy being a local government area Chairman and what would you like to do if you are re-elected?

I am happy to be a chairman of Ohaukwu Local Government Area. I can beat my chest and say I have done well within this one year and some months. From what I have done for my people, I deserve a second tenure. I have done much, but if I am allowed, I will say I want to empower more youths.

About the Author

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Sunday Ogbu is a professional journalist with eight - twelve years experience that had worked with various print and online media. Sunday specializes in news reporting with the aim of educating his readers on current social, political and economic occurences within his area of coverage. Sunday is a strong force to work with in the media industry and uses his positive attitude and tireless energy to encourage others to work hard and succeed. Sunday is inspired daily by his wife and their four children. In his free time, Sunday likes sight-seeing, reading and discussing issues of societal interest.

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Sunday Ogbuhttps://thewillnews.com
Sunday Ogbu is a professional journalist with eight - twelve years experience that had worked with various print and online media. Sunday specializes in news reporting with the aim of educating his readers on current social, political and economic occurences within his area of coverage. Sunday is a strong force to work with in the media industry and uses his positive attitude and tireless energy to encourage others to work hard and succeed. Sunday is inspired daily by his wife and their four children. In his free time, Sunday likes sight-seeing, reading and discussing issues of societal interest.

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