“ENUGU DREAM IS ALIVE:
LET THE FUTURE BEGIN TODAY”
TEXT OF INAUGURAL ADDRESS
CHIMAROKE NNAMANI, MD,
GOVERNOR OF ENUGU STATE OF NIGERIA
MAY 29, 1999
I stand here to assure you that this is a new dawn in Enugu State. Our elders see visions. In youth we dream dreams. Our common vision and dream are of a greater tomorrow for our men, women and children. A vision and dream of a new Enugu State. We are projecting a foreseeable future when the basic needs of human existence such as reliable infrastructure, social services, and improved quality of life would become facts of our everyday living. Our participatory government intends to make all our people stake-holders in the sustainable development and growth of this young state so that we can all in turn become the beneficiaries of the rewards of our common struggle.
This Administration will be oriented towards people-centered development through the creation of an environment that will encourage the full development of our human and natural resources, the rekindling of our social services, and rehabilitation of our vital infrastructure. Thus, we should propel our state along the path of eradicating poverty, and promoting full and productive employment of our citizens.
This Administration is aware, and painfully so, that the problems of the state include a fledgling or weak industrial base, low level of agricultural production, a weak private sector, inefficient public utilities, low quality of social services, wide-spread unemployment and severe under-employment which have all combined to lead to our sluggish growth.
This Administration’s policy thrust will therefore aim at remedying the above deficiencies through direct intervention, particularly in the social services sector, and also by way of creating an enabling environment that would encourage a vibrancy in the private sector, thereby making us all, including local communities, partners in progress.
Objectives of Policy
Given that the literacy rate in our state is around less than 20 percent, this Administration will pursue an educational policy that will make it possible for all citizens of the relevant age groups to achieve basic levels of educational competence. In order to raise the literacy rate to 80 percent within the first 1,000 days of my Administration, our innovative two-pronged approach to education will focus on:
1. Introduction of Neighbour-hood schools,
2. Introduction of free (tuition) and compulsory education, up to junior secondary school level, by the year 2000.
The entire state is to be structured into school districts. Each school district is to have a district office; well-equipped library, computer-center and a clinic which is capable of running eye and ear tests. There will also be transportation system to be operated with private transport companies for each locality, with expected community support and participation. It is our expectation that the provision of local transport facility for children within the school districts will eliminate the need for “school-runs” and give workers the freedom to concentrate on their jobs, thereby raising the level of productivity.
Our target is to
improve literacy and numeracy rate from the present:-
(a) 50% for men by the year 2000 and
(b) 40% for women by the year 2000.
This, we wish to achieve within a time frame of between one and 3 years.
With everybody’s co-operation we hope to achieve improvement in education that will embody:
– Investments in the future of our state and country
– Improvements in literacy and numeracy rates.
– Improved productivity through enhanced skills capacity building
– Avenue for poverty alleviation
– The promotion of social, cultural and civil awareness.
Objectives of Policy
The thrust of our health policy will be on Primary Health Care (PHC), which is to be administered in a holistic manner involving the state government, local governments and our various communities. Within this context, our objective is to provide health services that are promotive, preventive, curative, and rehabilitative. Furthermore, our people-friendly PHC programme will make essential health care accessible, acceptable, and affordable to the poor in the communities.
Our priority activities shall therefore, include:
- Establishment/reinforcement of two PHC Centres per LGA, i.e., a maternity and a Health Center; each to be well-equipped with up-to-date facilities including one ambulance per centre. Periodic rounds are to be made by qualified doctors to each PHC center.
- Establishment of one State Hospital for each of the three senatorial districts in the state, with each to be well-equipped and staffed.
- All the afore-mentioned health facilities would have direct links to referral centres in UNTH, Park Lane Hospital, and the Orthopedic Hospital in Enugu. The target and time frame are to increase in access of communities to heath-care from the present level of about 50% to 70% by the year 2000.
It is my
belief that my health policy objective will make health-care available to the
broadest masses of the people in our urban and rural areas. It will equally
ensure a wide heath-care coverage which should help in:
(i) Raising life expectancy from the present level of 51 years,
(ii) Lowering maternal maternity rate (MMR) from the present 1,000 per 10,000 live births,
(iii) Lowering infant mortality rate (IMR) from the present level of 82 per 1,000 live births, and
(iv) Lowering the under-five mortality rate (U5MR) from the present 191 per 1,000 live births.
Objectives of Policy
In order to further open up the different localities in our youthful state, where the communities are essentially rural, and improve accessibility to the vast majority of our people; this Administration will focus attention on expanding our network of roads.
Our priorities shall be:
1. Provision of Ring-roads linking up the Headquarters of the 17 LGAs in the state.
2. Provision of state roads radiating from LGA Headquarters.
Our target is to link the entire state with an accessible road net-work within a time-frame of between 6 months and 3 years. This policy will facilitate movement of goods and persons, as well as provide basis for raising the tempo of commerce, industry and agriculture, state-wide.
Objectives of Policy:
Because of the vital nature of this resource, I want to assure you of my Administration’s determination to pay special attention to it. The low levels of access to safe drinking water, which is less than 30% of our population, and the attendant poor sanitation, point to the potential hazards of endemic diseases to which the masses of our people are exposed.
Realizing the severe deprivation which this deficiency represents, this Administration intends to vigorously embark on policies that will ameliorate the inadequacy. We strongly believe that the availability of safe, potable, water would have multiplier effects on education and productivity.
My Administration’s priority in the first place is to take steps to determine the appropriate combination of pipe-line projects vis-à-vis water schemes, bore-hole programmes, etc. Our programme shall run in phases as follows:
Provision of safe drinking water within the Enugu metropolis.
Phase II: Provision of safe drinking water in 17 Local Government Area Headquarters
Phase III: Ensuring that all citizens of the state have access to adequate and reliable pipe-borne water.
We shall approach the project through the digging of bore-holes and consolidation of water schemes.
and Time Frame
(a) To raise the proportion of the rural population with access to safe drinking
water to at least 60% from the present 36% by the year 2000;
(b) Raise from 20% to 50% the proportion of the population with access to proper
sanitation by the year 2000.
Urban: (a) Raise from 57% to 80% the proportion of urban population with access to safe drinking water by the year 2000;
(c) Raise from 30% to 60% the proportion of the population with access to proper
sanitation by the year 2000.
Our water policy will ensure availability of adequate supply of potable water, engender good health and general well-being of citizens, enhance the quality of life of our people and facilitate prompt disposal of refuse and sewage.
Objectives of Policy
Energy and its ready availability are so fundamental to meaningful existence and development that it is becoming increasingly difficult to imagine any type of human activity that is not power-driven. Up to the present time, NEPA continues to be the primary agency for providing electric power in the country. With the promulgation of our new constitution, and the placement of energy in the concurrent legislative list, our state, like others, has now assumed the authority for power generation, transmission, and distribution. While taking a hard look at the gaps in our energy needs, this Administration intends to work with NEPA in the first stage in order to maximize the power generated and transmitted by the agency in our state.
In conjunction with NEPA, our priority shall be to design a grid-type system to combine poles and transformers in order to reach the widest range of consumers dispersed in our urban and rural communities. We shall lay less emphasis on the present rural electrification mode of energy provision.
By this method, our benefits shall be constant availability of electric power which is a prerequisite for rapid economic growth and development, as well as improvement in living standards. Specifically, energy availability shall spur industrial growth, substantially lower costs of industrial and commercial productive activities, and free up resources for other growth-generating economic activities.
Objectives of Policy:
Recognizing that the state’s Recurrent Expenditure eats up a more than proportionate share of revenue from the Federation Account, this Administration will take a look at the short, medium, and long term revenue prospects of the state government. A determination may have to be made regarding whether the size of the workforce, and the wage bill, is consistent with a level that can free up resources for economic growth and sustainable development. It may also be necessary to streamline the bureaucracy in order to be able to operate with a structure and size consistent with an effective and efficient state machinery. The streamlining will likely commence with the leadership of the state bureaucracy. Basically, this
Administration being uncomfortable with an apparent pattern of dependency on the federal/state relationship, is desirous of exploring prospects for generating sources of financing not only for resource augmentation but more importantly for implementing development projects that will be beneficial to the broad masses of our people.
As one of the
key initial steps, in order to inculcate a new democratic culture into the
workforce, orientation programmes in governance may need to be organised for
Our target in this direction will be to restructure and overhaul of the entire Public Service within a time frame of between 7 days and 2 years of the inception of this Administration.
My good people of Enugu State, one might be excused to wonder how we shall be able to fund all these programmes. Let me assure you that laudable programmes such as we have enjoyed international attention, national support and community co-operation. To this end, our anticipated sources of funding shall include:
- External: – UNESCO, UNlCEF, WORLD BANK, UNDP,EU, ILO, ODA, USAID, ADB, UNlDO, JICA, Global 2000, IDA, UNFPA, Ford Foundation, Carnegie Foundation, etc.
- National: – FGN, FMOH, NPHCDA (National Primary Health Care Development Agency), etc.
- State: – BlR, Commerce and Industry
- Community Participation.
My dear good people of Enugu State, we have always maintained that we were in search of the power to do good. Our interest is in those people who time has forgotten, those who civilization has left behind; our brothers and sisters who are outside the ‘belt-way’.
The mother in Umulokpa, who dies from normal child birth; the baby in Ndiabor who dies from simple diarrhea, the child who drowns swimming across Agu Iduma Aniyi River in Amagunze to get to School, and the father in Ugwugo -Nike who agonizes over the payment of school fees.
Never, Never, Never again! Never again shall have two societies in Enugu State. No more two societies: one for the rich, one for the poor; one for those at Coal Camp, a different system for those in G.R.A. A school system for those at Abakpa, a different school system for those inIndependence Layout. Lack of water supply in Isi-uzo, but water supply for the rich in Enugu. They buy as much water as they want. A system where our land is shared amongst the rich few who pay little or no taxes, who send their wives abroad to be delivered of their babies, send their children abroad for education and jet all over the globe for social activities.
Today, change will start. Indeed, it has started. Change to one great society, where that mother in Umulokpa will have equal access to healthcare as the mother in G.R.A., the child ar Amagunze will have he same access to education as the child in Independence Layout. The child in Ndiabor will have the same access to healthcare as the child in Ekulu, Enugu. That, we pledge and more.
This is the beginning of the journey of inclusion. Our people want to be counted. “Ana guo, si anaguye ha. Tufu akpagbure, si ana ajuo ha ihe ha chere”. That to me is democracy. Democracy is God’s gift to man. It is only with the democratic process, that we all can indeed be equal.
The struggle continues! Victory is
God bless Enugu State.