Monthly Archives: June 2013

I want to be known as a Pro-Poor Legislator – Hon. Linus Abaa Okorie

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Hon. Linus Abaa Okorie was elected in 2011 to represent the good and diligent people of Ohaozara, Onicha and Ivo Federal Constituency of Ebonyi State. His campaign promises to his constituents, written in his own words is published below.

THE CARING HEART GROUP

Hon. Linus A. Okorie

Hon. Linus A. Okorie

LEGISLATIVE FOCUS
In seeking the support of the good people of the constituency, I pledge to do all that may be necessary to bring the spotlight on Old Ohaozara. I shall proceed to build and/or join such legislative groups or coalitions as may be expedient to attract required government attention and patronage.
Specifically, I shall adopt a pro-poor legislative policy knowing that good done to the favour of the poor , positively imparts million own constituency. I would want to be known as the PRO-POOR LEGISLATOR.
I shall also do all I am able to push for a legislation that not only legalizes street trading and vending, but creates a federally- funded education programme for the traders as presently the case with itinerant Fulani Herdsmen. This is not to say that one advocates street trading as a preferred occupation for our youths, but a realization that an overwhelming majority of the traders across the country are our people who require urgent government attention and support while we steer others towards formal and vocational education. It also accords with prevailing best practices in other parts of the world, including the developed nations.

VISION
An Old Ohaozara (federal constituency) that compares favourably in living standards; expressed in availability of social amenities, economic opportunities and political patronage with the best in Nigeria; where access to education is universal and street trading is no longer a predominant engagement of our youth population.

MISSION
1. To put the developmental problems of Old Ohaozara on the national front burner in order to attract adequate solutions to them.
2. To vigorously advocate for well-funded education policy for street traders, hawkers, vendors and other itinerants as bonafide citizens in line with the education for all goal as applicable to itinerant Fulani herdsmen.
3. To canvass for the legalizing of street trading as a legitimate economic engagement under a strict licensing and monitoring system that meets the requirements of modern cities without compromising the economic rights and human dignity of the traders.
4. To assiduously campaign against the high incidence of poverty in Old Ohaozara.
5. Working in concert with NGO’s, to introduce and support a policy of social mobilization, organization and enlightenment that empower groups and segments; especially women, economically and politically for greater social development.
6. To nurture a virile youth population that is educated, skilled, enlightened and productively engaged for positive development.
7. To provide support for the needy through scholarship awards, financial grant, official recommendations and employment-sourcing as the case may be.
8. To support God’s work in all its ramifications in Old Ohaozara.
9. To contribute to the preservation and promotion of our traditional and cultural heritage; including our mother tongue (our dialect).
10. To promote the teaching, learning and application of ICT, especially among the youths in order to bring them at par with modern trends and requirements; and as an avenue of employment and wealth creation.
11. To evolve an equity and participation-based resource allocation system that engages communities and stakeholders in the identification, citing and monitoring of projects.
12. To leverage the efforts of the state government by attracting federal projects to the constituency; different from the usual constituency projects.
13. To seek out and partner with local and international agencies in the key areas of the MDGs for the benefit of the people.
14. To do all that is necessary and possible to encourage, support and sustain the unity, peace and brotherhood of the people of Old Ohaozara as a vital contribution to the overall peace of Ebonyi State.

Ohaozara People Assess Rep. Linus Okorie

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Hon. Linus A. Okorie

Hon. Linus A. Okorie

In November 2012, the people of Ohaozara, Onicha and Ivo Federal Constituency shared their thoughts on the performance of their representative at the National Assembly. The opinions were shared via their facebook group – Forum for Ohaozara Progressives and compiled by Humphrey Chidi Awo and Dr Laz Ude Eze.

AREAS CONSIDERED SATISFACTORY:
i. Repair of damaged bridges in Okposi and Onicha
ii. Securing jobs for constituents
iii. Regular visits to the constituency
iv. Renting of Constituency House in Abuja
v. Good initiatives like planned microcredit schemes for the poor; planned ICT training for youths, building of website, planned creation of database for unemployed constituents.
vi. Cordial relationship with other leaders in the constituency
vii. Active participation in Public Hearings of House Committees in which he belongs.
viii. Airing of Constituency Meeting on Constitution Review on a national media (AIT).

A repaired bridge along Onicha-Isu Road.

A repaired Umubo bridge along Onicha-Isu Road.


AREAS CONSIDERED UNSATISFACTORY
i. Not active at the Plenary Sessions of the House – not known to have sponsored any bill or moved motions on issues concerning the constituency (specifically lingering crisis in Ishiagu, impassable federal roads in the constituency).
ii. Non-maintenance of the Abuja Constituency House (not swept, overgrown by weed, no water or power supply)
iii. Yet to commence ICT centers and Microcredit schemes for constituents
iv. Yet to build website or data base for unemployed graduate constituents
v. Poor accessibility and communication from his office
vi. Alleged to have dropped contacts and communication with some youth supporters
vii. Non-response to private mails or messages
viii. Giving unclear response like “God help us all” in reply to a message with a specific demand
ix. Non-implementation of the “Caring Heart Campaign Agenda”
x. Aides not well known or accessible to many constituents

Ugwulangwu electricity sub-station for the constituency.

Ugwulangwu electricity sub-station.

SUGGESTED WAY FORWARD
i. Improve on legislative functions; become more visible during House Plenary Sessions by contributing to debates and sponsoring/moving of bills/motions respectively.
ii. Draw FG’s attention through a motion to the deplorable federal roads in the constituency (e.g. Amasiri-Okposi, Nara-Isu-Onicha-Okposi, etc)
iii. Begin the implementation of ICT center/training, Microcredit Scheme, etc
iv. Build a website and update regularly with information about activities of the office to bridge existing communication gap.
v. Make the Abuja Constituency House usable and make information available on the process of getting to make use of it and whom to contact.
vi. Begin to reply all private messages or emails with coherent response.
vii. Implement the “Caring Heart Campaign Agenda”
viii. Convene an emergency meeting on AVIA NKWO issue to avert any possible breakdown of law and order between Okposi and Onicha.
ix. Constituents should continue share their concerns and encouragement
x. Keep up efforts in the areas he’s already adjudged to be doing well.

MAY GOD CONTINUE TO BLESS OHAOZARA NATION.
(The above assessment was first published on facebook on November 26, 2012)

Stanley Ibeku: Remembering Professor C.O.E Onwuliri

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Just like yesterday, the reality is glaringly manifesting taming all doubt about the demise of Prof. Celestine Onyemaobi Elehi Onwuliri, a velvet-ranking academic and intellectual anchor. Prof. Onwuliri alongside 152 others died last year at the doomed Dana Aircraft precisely at Iju-Ishaga Lagos State.

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Late Professor Celestine Onwuliri

Prof. Onwuliri until his unfortunate death was on sabbatical at the National Universities Commission(NUC) as the Panel Chairman on the Establishment of Private Universities. He took up the appointment after a 5-year tenure as Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri(FUTO) where he displayed administrative acumen and helped shape the future of the university. With several awards, prizes and accolades, Prof. Onwuliri’s profile is rather intimidating and nonetheless inspiring.

 

My interactions as well as queries with the Grand Commander of the Knight of St. John International clearly show him as an understanding, accommodating and articulate administrator. That singular event that wasted the lives and future of many Nigerians is a monumental tragedy which must not be allowed to occur.
What happened to the flurry of investigations, probes, enquiries and hullabaloos one year after? May their souls find space in the lord- Amen.

Stanley was a student at FUTO during Professor Onwuliri’s years as Vice Chancellor.