Lawyer urges Soludo to conduct LG election, calls for amendment of chieftaincy title law in Anambra

By Akuma Ebere

President General of Ndimgbu Otolo community in Nnewi North Local Government Area of Anambra state, Barr Celestine Uzochukwu Okeke has appealed to Governor Charles Soludo to conduct local government election in the state and also to look into the manner people are given chieftaincy titles in Anambra.

He made the appeal in an interview with our Correspondent in his office. He commended the Governor for his giant strides in repositioning the state to rank among the best in developmental projects which he said attracted the Champion Newspaper to honour him with ‘The Best Governor Of The Year’ award few days ago.

The lawyer, however, noted that the delay in conducting local government election in Anambra had adverse effect on overall development and progress of the state at the grassroots level.

Okeke urged Governor Soludo to demonstrate his commitment to democracy and good governance by fulfilling one of his electioneering campaign promises which he said included conduct of local government election in line with Section 7 of the Nigerian Constitution.

“Conduct of the local government election was in his manifesto and that was why the youths and Anambrarian supported him. I wish he uses his good offices to ensure the election is conducted the way it is done in other states, “he said.

He appealed to the Governor to emulate the examples of Lagos, Enugu, and other states, adding that such move would signal a commitment to ensuring that dividends of democracy would get to the grassroots in the state.

On the manner in which chieftaincy titles are being bestowed on people in recent times, the legal practitioner called on the Governor to direct the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters to look into that and for the amendment of the extant law in that connection to return normalcy.

He said checkmating how chieftaincy titles were awarded in the state had become necessary as it had become cash and carry without ascertaining if the recipient deserved it or not.

“Our government should put into consideration the amendment of local government and chieftaincy law, by pegging the criteria that will make chieftaincy title to command respect. The law should ensure that any intending recipient is a human capital developer and must have contributed immensely towards the betterment of his community.This step will help to reduce giving a chieftaincy title to the wrong person, “he noted.

On his tenure as the PG of his community, he said: “My Executive and I were sworn into office on December 26, 2023 and since then we have been working round the clock and hitting the ground running to ensure that our community is developed. Within a short time in office, we are able to achieve much through the unwavering support and cooperation of our people.

“Immediately after we assumed duties, we make sure that we reach out to all the stakeholders, all the branches of Ndimgbu community, both home and in diaspora.The aim is geared towards reviving the spirit of cordial relationship among us, appealing for all hands to be on deck for the sole purpose of developing our community.

“We have paid visits to some of the branches, telling them the need to invest at home and I thank God the results so far are encouraging. Our illustrious sons have started thinking home. They have started investing at home for the development of our community.

“In not more than five months, we are also able to ensure our lands are not grabbed by people. And we are able to give our community hall a face-lift with offices to make it a befitting place to stay, “he said.

When asked about the challenges he faces as the PG, he said: “So far so good, there are no much challenges. I thank God for the wisdom to forge ahead; things are moving well.”

He advised the youths not to have get- rich-quick mindset, to shun bribery and corruption ,but to work towards getting rich through hard work and honesty, assuring that it pays.

Okeke appreciated the immediate past caretaker committee Chairman for conducting free and fair election and also thanked his community; stakeholders, sons and daughters in diaspora and all the branches also for the support he has been receiving from them for the development and progress of the community.

He called on them not to relent in investing at home in the spirit of think-home-philosophy.

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