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Mbah sets past Igbo leaders as models, holds up a new hope for Enugu

THE Enugu State governor Peter Ndubuisi Mbah has rekindled a new sense of leadership and purpose as he harps on the heritage of past leaders in Igboland, insisting that “we cannot afford to delink from our glorious past.”

In his inaugural address on May 29, Mbah reminded the people of Enugu that they were “inheritors of centuries of pedigree of a hardworking, industrious and brave Igbo race,” with forebears who “worked relentlessly for the greatness of Nigeria.”

He charged for a reconnection to  this glorious past, to the astounding leadership qualities of the legendary Dr. Michael Okpara, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Akanu Ibiam, “and others who administered Igboland, right from this soil of Enugu.” 

Mbah, called on the youths to trust him as he assured them that he is “pregnant with ideas on how to rescue” them and the State from evident threats. 

“I will not let you down. We believe that the only purpose of leadership is to bring the best out of every one of us. You are why all these are possible,” he stated.

The governor recognizes youths as the “beneficiaries of the tomorrow that is now here today. We want to expose our youths to the skills required to grasp the emerging future and create opportunities for the genius in them to flourish. 

“We will equip our youths with e-commerce, fintech and cyber-security skills, such that they will become globally interconnected. They will be champions of the globe without necessarily having to leave Enugu.”

In espousing what is perhaps his larger vision for the state, he envisioned to “recreate the iconic wonderment of economic prosperity and phenomenal growth witnessed in Singapore and the United Arab Emirates.

“When their forebears conceived the models of Dubai and Singapore some few decades ago, they too began to sow their tomorrow like a tiny seed as we are doing today.”

“All the ingredients needed to actualize this dream are present in us. Today, God is bestowing upon us a leadership that keys into those yearnings and aspirations.

“We will pursue an economic growth that is unrivaled in this part of the country. We will tap into the limitless resources of the private sector to provide world-class infrastructure and productive sector growth.

These will be seen in agriculture/agro-allied sector, education, sports, healthcare, water resources, sanitation, hygiene and urban renewal, infrastructure.

With the outlay of his plans in all sectors, and the challenge of funding, he aims to set the marker as early as in his first 100 days, by convening a Diaspora and Investors Forum to market showcase the investment potentials of some sectors.

He states: “Our government will also organize what is called the Diaspora Bond where we will securitize remittances from abroad. In this regard, remittances will no longer be for consumption alone but for production. Government will create a platform for securing those remittances so the investors have security for their funds.

“We will strengthen internally generated revenue, not by increasing tax rate arbitrarily but by expanding the tax net, plugging loopholes of leakages, as well as by operating a lean and agile government.”

Central to his philosophy in governance is a collaboration and partnership with the private sector. “Our ambition is to have our state as the corridor where the private sector migrates and plays,” he stated.

While declaring that “the tomorrow we professed is here,” he charged the people of the state to “take back what it has always represented. What carves us out for this role is an acute sense of industry. Let us commit to our sense of enterprise.

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