OBI, THE TRAIL BLAZER
It was on the 19th day of July 1961 that a male child was born into Obi's family in Amatutu village Agulu in the present Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State and he was named Peter which its biblical meaning is rock.
He is tall and light in complexion.
He is soft spoken, a trait he inherited from his mother. Peter was born into a devout catholic family which influenced one of his brothers and one of his sisters to join priesthood and religious (sisterhood) respectively. Peter got married to Margaret Brownson Usen in 1992 and has two children: Gabriella Nwamaka Frances Obi and Gregory Peter Oseloka Obi.
Peter Obi attended Christ the King College (C.K.C), Onitsha, in Anambra State and obtained his West African School Certificate (WASC). He later gained admission into University of Nigeria Nsukka in 1980 where he obtained a B.A (Hons) in philosophy in 1984.
Peter Obi is an achiever who has left his foot-print on the sand of time. For one, he was the Chairman of Next International Nigeria Limited, the Chairman and Director of Guardian Express Mortgage Bank Ltd, Guardian Express Bank Plc, Future View Securities Ltd, Paymasters Nigeria Ltd, Chams Nigeria Ltd, Data Corps Ltd and Card Centre Ltd. He was the youngest Chairman of Fidelity Bank Plc, and he is now the Executive Governor of Anambra State.
His achievements as governor of Anambra State are listless, suffice it that Mr. Peter Obi is God sent and a gift to Anambrarians. At the outset of his first term in office, his mandate was stolen by the P.D.P. However, after three years of litigation, his stolen mandate was given back to him by the court of appeal on 15th March, 2006. He took over the mantle of leadership of Governor of Anambra State on 17th March 2006.
On the 2nd of November, 2006, he was impeached by the State House of Assembly. This is after seven months in office. He was then replaced with his Deputy Dame Virginia Etiaba. Obi successfully challenged his impeachment and was re-instated as the governor of the state on 9th February, 2007 by the Court of Appeal sitting in Enugu.
In 2007 General elections, Andy Uba won but Obi returned to court contending that the four - year tenure he had won in 2003 election only started to count when he took office in March 2006. On 14th June 2007, the Supreme Court of Nigeria upheld Obi's contention and returned him to office to complete his tenure.
On 7th February, 2010, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Peter Obi the winner of the 6th February, 2010 gubernatorial election. This election victory gives Peter Obi an additional four years as the Governor of Anambra State. Leaving his political trials and conquests, we can continue to list the other achievements of this trail blazer as follows: the conditions of service of Judges in Anambra State have improved tremendously as majority of the judges now have official quarters; permanent secretaries have official cars with drivers; new state secretariat complexes have been constructed and effectively occupied; salaries are paid as at when due; promotion is based on merit; the inmates in Anambra prisons are acquiring vocational training now; pensioners, whom past governors neglected for many years are smiling now because their gratuities are paid within three months of their formal disengagements from service. Finally on this note the public sector is re-established as the main engine room of development in the State.
Mr. Peter restored the confidence of the international community in the State. Across the state, quite a number of organizations within the United Nation System, the European Union, bi-lateral, voluntary, other donor agencies and development partners are actively involved in various value-added programmes and projects in Anambra State.
In conclusion, Mr. Peter Obi is a person one can partner with because of his integrity, accountability, conservatism, productivity, probity, fear of God, gentleness, humility, hardwork and respect for due process. He is a man of vision and a positive change agent. He needs the support of the Anambarians in order for him to accomplish what he itemized in his blue print before his assumption of office. We can give him this. The future we crave for, may well depend on the support we lend him.
Izuchukwu writes from Kaduna