Former National Chairman of the now defunct All Nigerian Peoples Party, ANPP, Dr. Christopher Ogbonnaya Onu, has been pencilled down for the position of Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, which is presently being occupied by his kinsman, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim.
This is contrary to the widely held view that Dr. Chris Ngige would get the coveted job which the All Progressives Congress, APC, is said to have zoned to the South East geo-political zone of the country.
A high ranking source within the APC told Global Patriot Newspapers Sunday that Chief Onu was preferred by the President-Elect, General Muhammadu Buhari, and other key leaders of the party because “he is more consistent, gentle and self-effacing” than Ngige .
According to the source, who preferred anonymity, Dr. Onu “is brilliant, sobre and nationalistic, and is the type of person needed for the onerous task of rebuilding Nigeria.”
Born on December 1, 1951, in Ohaozara Local Government Area of Ebonyi state, Dr. Onu became the first civilian governor of the old Abia state (1991), then made up of what is today Abia and Ebonyi states and was chosen by his colleague governors as Chairman, Conference of Nigerian elected Governors.
A team player, he was selected at his party’s primaries in 1999 as the first presidential candidate of the now defunct All Peoples Party, APP.
He is currently a member of the Board of Trustees, BOT, of the APC and one of the key figures that engineered the mega merger of political parties that brought about the APC and led to the crushing defeat of the ruling party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the April 11 general elections.
Soft-spoken and rarely controversial, Dr. Onu had Grade One with Distinction in the West African School Certificate examination at Izzi High School, Abakiliki, Ebonyi state; recorded Distinctions in Physics and Chemistry at the Higher School Certificate examination at College of Immaculate Conception, CIC, Enugu, graduating as best overall student.
He went on to the University of Lagos, UNILAG, where in 1976 he graduated with first class honours in Chemical Engineering. He also has Doctor of Philosophy, Ph.D, degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, UC Berkely California, USA, 1980.
While in the US he was, among others, President of the African Students Union and President of the Nigerian Association of Northern California, Inc.
Barring any last minute changes, Dr. Onu is set to step into the highly demanding office of SGF for the APC led government of General Buhari.