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Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
Stakeholders in Anambra North Senatorial zone have given thumbs up to Senator Stella Adaeze Oduah for what they described as an impactful representation so far since her sojourn in the National Assembly after the 2015 general election.
In a thanksgiving service held in Onitsha recently, Oduah presented her score-card in pushing for the welfare of the people of the constituency while showering praises on the people for the confidence they reposed in her.
Anambra North Senatorial zone comprises seven local governments in Anambra State namely Onitsha North, Onitsha South, Ogbaru, Ayamelum, Anambra East, Anambra West and Oyi .
In attendance during the event were traditional rulers from the zone, market women, youth groups, men organizations, including the physically challenged persons.
The Catholic Archbishop of Onitsha, Most Rev Valerian Okeke billed to preside over the thanksgiving Holy Mass was represented by the Chancellor of the Archdiocese, Very Rev Fr Prudentius Aroh with dozens of priests from across the Archdiocese in attendance.
Two Anglican prelates Most Rev Emmanuel Chukwuma, the Archbishop of Enugu Ecclesiastic Province and Rt. Rev Johnson Ekwe of Niger West Diocese were also present.
In a homily, the Spiritual Director, Holy Ghost Adoration Ministry,Uke,Rev Fr Emmanuel Obimma a.k.a Ebube Muonso talked on the need for Nigerians and Christians to embrace the Holy Spirit so as to get divine direction that would guide one’s actions to do the right thing at all times.
He challenged leaders to get preoccupied with the welfare of the masses and the led instead of promoting ethnicity, nepotism and religious discrimination.
The charismatic preacher eulogised Senator Oduah for all her charity works for the poor, describing her as an Iroko tree, which has sheltered many, urging the people of the zone to always lend their support to her so she can continue on the right path.
Senator Oduah in a thank-you speech to the constituents after the church service expressed gratitude to the people for the trust reposed in her as their representative in the Senate.
She said that to further her efforts in making meaningful impacts with her position, she had embraced human capital development as a core thrust of her representation.
She noted that such entailed the harnessing of the potentials of her people and empowering them in diverse areas of endeavour in order to create economic values for the people.
The end result of human capital development, she noted, was in creating an economic viable Anambra North where potentials are harnessed, skills acquired and the people empowered.
The Senator listed various vocational training programmes already handled and upcoming ones which she said have led to the production of people with skills who have been financially empowered to start up something on their own while many have been assisted to go back to school.
She listed 30 different projects yet to be executed for the people of Anambra North zone which were successfully captured in the 2017 budget.
Some of the projects included the construction of Environmental Research Centre on Climate Change in Anambra North Senatorial District, training on mechanized fishing and processing, research and training on soilless farming for the communities where planting is only for 8 months of the year because of the impact of flood from the River Niger.
Other projects included construction of mini-basic sports stadiums in Okpoko and Nsugbe, provision of empowerment materials and equipment for women and youths in the senatorial district.
Making reference to executed projects in the 2016 year, Oduah listed 13 other projects cutting across road construction, provision of Information Communication Technology (ICT) centres, solar streetlights, water schemes, sports centres, police station, among others.
Communities who have benefitted from the projects included Onitsha, Ogbaru, Ayamelum, Anaku, Umueje, Oromaetiti, among others.
In the area of sponsorship of bills and motions, Oduah disclosed that she was instrumental to the emergence of about 28 bills and motions which are in various levels presently either at committee stage, second reading or awaiting initial submission stages.
Giving more insight to some of the bills, she talked about the South-East Development Commission Bill which she said has passed the second reading stage.
She disclosed that the bill when passed into law would act as a catalyst to develop the commercial potentials of the South-East and other connected matters.
She expressed optimism that with Chief Willie Obiano as Anambra governor and also coming from Anambra North zone, they are poised to create a social network where the concerns of the people would be shared and taken care of.
She promised that she would endeavour to actualize the people’s dreams while it is her vision that at the end of the day, those who had thought that Anambra North lacks dignified people would realize that they would have become a zone to be reckoned with, whether economically, politically or otherwise.
Bishops Chukwuma and Ekwe in their separate remarks paid glowing tributes to Senator Oduah, describing her as a forthright and disciplined person who does not discriminate against religion or tribe.
Traditional Ruler of Umunya community, Igwe Kris Onyekwuluje in his own remark commended Oduah for her reach-out spirit, noting that her recognition of the traditional institutions was a sign of a woman who has never forgotten her roots despite her level of exposure.
The Chief of Staff of Princess Stella Oduah Foundation, Princess Nwaka Ononuju disclosed that in the weeks ahead, another empowerment programme which would involve cash gifts, skill acquisition tools and mobility, among others have been lined up by the Senator across the seven local governments in the zone.
Rev Fr Donald Uzoh, Chairman of Maxlife Foundation, a charitable organisation floated by Senator Oduah, testified to the various scholarship schemes instituted by Senator Oduah for the benefit of the youths while the President of West African Catholic Priests Association, Rev Fr Martin Onukwuba went down memory lane to list some of the assistance she rendered to some sick and aged priests across West Africa.