By Chijioke Okoronkwo
Owerri, Sept. 22, 2018
The Chairman, Imo State Council of Traditional Rulers, His Royal Majesty, Eze Samuel Ohiri, on Saturday described the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, as one of the best vice presidents Nigeria ever had.
Ohiri expressed this view while receiving Osinbajo at his palace in Owerri where the vice president also had a town hall meeting.
He said that the vice president had creditably acquitted himself in the way he piloted the affairs of the country any time President Muhammadu Buhari was not in the country.
“I want to thank you, especially for the way you held forth for Mr President the last time he stepped out of the country.
“The way you conducted the affairs of the country; people are talking about you in the world.
“Unarguably, you are one the best vice presidents we have ever had.
“We are proud of you,’’ he said
In his remark, Gov. Rochas Okorocha of Imo expressed appreciation to Osinbajo for honouring him by visiting the state on a day the governor was marking his birthday despite the vice president’s busy schedule.
He said that the state government had initiated a ‘one community one project’ programme aimed at taking governance to the grassroots.
Okorocha said that the programme was in consonance with the various economic empowerment programmes of the Federal Government.
“I wish you will be here on Monday; I had planned for you to hand over the first cheque of our one community one project programme – a partnership between the communities and the state government to set one small scale industry in every community.
“So, we are looking at in the next six months, to build about 645 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
“Imo State Government will give 40 per cent of the take off fund which is 4 million; to all the 645 communities and their cheques will be released starting from Monday with the release of the Paris Club. Some are into farms, poultry, and snail farming among others.
Responding, Osinbajo thanked Imo traditional rulers, the governor and Imo State people in general for their usual hospitality.
He said that various completed and ongoing projects in the state typified how states could partner with the Federal Government in driving development.
Imo state is a perfect example of the cooperation that should exist between all tiers of government; the state government and the traditional rulers here have demonstrated how we should work together.
“On our way here, we had been to the International Cargo airport, which was approved by the Federal Government and built by the Imo State Government – the first of its kind in the country
“The Imo Cargo airport is a very important infrastructural development because not only does it represent the commercial hub of the South East, it is also central to the economy of Nigeria.
“I will also commend the state government for the Air Force hospital built by Imo State Government and handed over to the Federal Government,’’ he said.
Osinbajo had shortly after touching down at Imo airport, inspected the ongoing International Cargo project before proceeding to inaugurate a 200-bed hospital built by the Imo State Government and donated to the Nigerian Air Force, NAF.
The vice president also inaugurated the TraderMoni Scheme at the Relief Market, Owerri.
Afterwards, Osinbajo proceeded to the Rochas Foundation, Owerri where wards from all over the foundation in Nigeria and across Africa, held a colourful 56th birthday celebration for their benefactor, Okorocha.
Delivering a lecture titled, “ The Advantage of the Disadvantage,” Osinbajo encouraged the less privileged not to despair but to work hard and have faith in God.
He said that many notable personalities in Nigeria and world over were orphans that never gave up.
According to the vice President, there is merit in being able to give and commended Okorocha for his philanthropy, especially in giving free education to indigent children.