Almost eight years after he had left office, members of Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF) have described Mr. Peter Obi’s tenure as the Governor of Anambra State, as eight years of clear and pragmatic demonstration of leadership.
This was disclosed by the leader of the group, Prof. Uzodinma Nwala, at the unveiling of the book entitled “The Challenge of Good Governance and Leadership in Nigeria: Eight Years of Peter Obi in Anambra State.”
Obi, a two-time governor, had governed Anambra State between 2006 and 2014, on the platform of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA.
His years of leadership were characterized by frugality in state resource management, due process and accountability, as noted by International Transparency Groups.
According to Prof. Nwala, the book was not essentially about Peter Obi as a person, but about the exemplary and purposeful leadership he provided that had remained a beacon of good governance.
Nwala disclosed that the need to use Obi as a model, was borne out of the testimony they garnered when the group undertook the industrial tour of Alaigbo, starting with Anambra State.
He said in Anambra, when they met with Chief Mbazulike Amaechi, he was full of kind, reassuring and encouraging words about Obi.
Further, he disclosed how the CEO of INNOSON Vehicle Manufacturing, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, requested them to thank Obi for the unprecedented support he offered him, including making it possible for him to stand on sound financial footing by paying him upfront for vehicles supplied to him as well as the part he played when his consignment was seized by customs.
Nwala said the trip to Onitsha Habour Industrial areas was eye-opening.
“We learnt the place was resuscitated by Peter Obi.
“The network of roads he built in the area was exceptional,” he noted.
The academic also said all the industries they visited spoke highly of Obi in terms of support and deep understanding of the requirements of the time.
“These visits convinced us to research into Obi’s era as a model for leadership,” Nwala said.
The Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Alaigbo Development Foundation ( ADF), Bishop Obi Onubogu, described the choice of Obi as a model of true leadership, presented for emulation, as a very objective one, because his leadership style has continued to reverberate among the people.
Speaking on behalf of Obi’s Former EXCO members, the first female Professor of Mass Communication in Nigeria, Prof. Stella Chinyere Okunna, who led the team, said in spite all odds, they always felt proud by the quality of services they helped Mr. Obi to deliver to the people.
“We may not be rich, but we have remained proud to be associated with Mr. Peter Obi whose passion for growth and development is unrivaled in this clime,” Okunna said.
With Okunna for the event were Dr. Patrick Obi, Dr. Chike Ohamobi, Dr. Mike Egbebike and Valentine Obienyem.
Quite unusually, the unveiling was not preceded by donations, as the organizers said it was just to formally let the world, Nigerians and Igbo people know that a book on practical leadership capable of re-orienting serious leaders, is out to be bought and read for edification.
The 152-page book has seven contributors under the editorship of Prof. Uzodinma Nwala.