Governor Hope Uzodimma has called on members of the Imo State Council of Elders to join hands and ensure that the implementation of the Charter of Equity is realised.
He assured that as the Governor, he will deploy the machinery of government to defend the document and its implementation.
The Governor spoke on Monday when members of the Imo State Council of Elders, led by their Chairman, HRH Eze (Dr.) Cletus Ilomuanya, paid a courtesy visit to him at the New Exco Chambers, Government House Owerri.
Governor Uzodimma thanked the elders for the visit and reminded them that the Imo State Elders Council has come to stay “as it is backed up by Act of the Parliament.”
He noted that the Elders Council has become the conscience of the state in all ramifications, with the members expected to advice and intervene on issues of peaceful existence, cohesion and cultural matters when they are needed.
Governor Uzodimma thanked them for the various sacrifices they have made, coming for their meetings from all over the world from time to time and said the government and people of Imo State appreciate their uncommon commitment to the interest of Imo State.
He said that the Charter of Equity is not a document that will be trivialised “because it holds a lot of future for the peace of Imo State.”
The Governor recalled the high level of insecurity and political instability that greeted his emergence in 2020, saying they were politically contrived and financed by some political practitioners in the state.
He said in search for solution, it was discovered that people were aggrieved because of non inclusiveness and political marginalisation due to the character of politics practised in the state which he said was instrumental to the birth to the Charter of Equity.
“That is why when the Charter was conceived it was welcomed by the government as possible solution to the crisis in the state,” he said.
The Governor said “people should not think that the Charter of Equity is a mere document because there will be internal mechanism that will be played up by the Governor of the State.”
He said the mechanism will help to identify merit, competence, eliminate mediocrity and bring up performance in the interest of the people.
The Governor informed the Elders that “the implementation will need our collective efforts” and that their “job is not complete until they see to the implementation and active realisation of the contents of the document and ensure the cry of the marginalised group is completely eliminated.”
Stressing on the quality of the document the Governor said that “the document is bold, courageous and realistic though some may not completely believed in the document.”
He assured that so long as he remains the Governor of Imo State he will deploy the machinery of the government to defend the document.
He therefore told the Elders Council to bank on him and expressed no fears because “you have passed the ball to me, I will go and score the goal.”
On the coming November 11 governorship election, he told the Elders that no meaningful government will succumb to the activities of non state actors and assured Imo people that on the election day their security will be guaranteed as “they will come out, vote, go without any fear of molestation.”
In his address during the visit, the Chairman Imo State Elders Council, Eze Cletus Ilomuanya reiterated that the Imo Charter of Equity will, among other gains, bring peace, unity and stability in Imo State “just as it is a panacea to wasteful expenditures within political context and avoidable bickering among the three sister geo-political zones in the state.”
Eze Ilomuanya added that “the Charter of Equity is for the future and betterment of the State as it is not self serving, neither is it intended to favour any particular geo-political zone or individual. Rather it is a pathfinder to a greater Imo State which we all desire.”
He informed the Governor of how they have gone round the three zones on advocacy concerning the Charter of Equity and said the message has received massive support as well as overwhelming endorsement of his re-election bid come November 11, 2023.
Finally, Ilomuanya added that the Elders Council has advised and appealed to the people of Imo State to all work and pray for the realisation of the Charter of Equity “as there is no better alternative to it because they have no other State than Imo State.”
Deputy Governor of Imo State, Placid Njoku, the Secretary to Government of Imo State, Cosmos Iwu, the Chief of Staff, Nnamdi Anyaehie among other top government officials attended the event.