Determined to stem local security challenges, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State has directed the 68 newly sworn-in Development Area Administrators in the state, to relocate to their areas and take charge immediately.
Gov. Ugwuanyi also directed that the new Administrators must engage all Traditional Rulers, Presidents of Town Unions, Religious Leaders, Youth Organizations, Women Organizations, Neighbourhood Watch groups, Forest Guards and indeed all stakeholders in their respective Development Areas, to inspire a grassroots security architecture underpinned by robust intelligence gathering and communication of same to security agencies.
The Governor, who gave the directives when he swore in the Administrators, at the Government House, Enugu, on Tuesday, stressed that the grassroots engagement strategy “is the only means of fully reclaiming our neighbourhoods, and we expect no less”.
Harping on the imperative for this new paradigm of neighbourhood-based intelligence gathering, Gov. Ugwuanyi pointed out that the strategy “stares us in the face”, stressing: “If we must secure our communities/neighbourhoods and fulfill our pivotal mandate of security and welfare of our people, as enshrined in section 14 subsection 2(b) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), then we must necessarily understand our neighbourhoods and the residents; their means of livelihood, lifestyle and networks”.
The governor, therefore, stated that “Enugu State Development Areas can no longer be superintended by absentee or non-resident Development Area Administrators”.
He reminded the Administrators that they have a duty to also ensure that their subjects are fully enlightened on government’s policies and programmes, and mobilized for collaborative partnership in peace keeping as well as implementation of policies and programmes of government.
According to him, “the government and people of Enugu State are eager to see our Development Area Administrators impact the grassroots with a view to changing the narratives on security, local economy and micro-infrastructure.
“Our new Administrators, I congratulate you on your assumption of duty (today) while assuring you of the all-time support of Enugu State Government as you embark on this critical duty.
“I pray that the abiding grace of Almighty God leads you through this onerous assignment”.
Responding, the Administrators expressed gratitude to Gov. Ugwuanyi for giving them the opportunity to serve the state, their respective local government and development areas, and assured the governor that they will discharge their duties diligently in accordance with his directives.
The event was witnessed by the Deputy Governor, Hon. Mrs. Cecilia Ezeilo, Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Edward Uchenna Ubosi and other Honourable Members of the House, State Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Hon. Augustine Nnamani, the Chairman, Enugu State Traditional Rulers’ Council, HRH Igwe Amb. Lawrence Agubuzu, Members of the State Executive Council (EXCO), Special Advisers to the Governor, Council Chairmen, among others.