Member representing the South-East on the Governing Board of the North-East Development Commission (NEDC), Rep. Sam Onuigbo has hailed the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Benjamin Kalu, as a true example of how governance impacts the common man when leaders approach governance as a collaboration for the growth of the people and not as a competition between arms of government or political parties.
Rep. Onuigbo stated this while speaking to reporters following the Grand Civic Reception organised for Rt. Hon. Kalu by the Abia State Government on December 28, and the Grand Civic Reception, Thanksgiving, and Homecoming of the Deputy Speaker organised by the Bende Federal Constituency on December 29, 2023.
Describing Rt Hon. Kalu as an intelligent politician who has mastered the art of inclusive and collaborative leadership, the former National lawmaker said that Abians in particular and Nigerians in general would reap immensely from the style of leadership of the Deputy Speaker and enjoined him to continue on the path of people-centric leadership.
Rep. Onuigbo who serves as the Chairman of the Committee on Security, Climate Change, and Special Intervention on the Board of the North-East Development Commission, said that the harmony which exists between Rt. Hon. Kalu, the Abia State Government, and other political leaders of the South-East, testifies to the Deputy Speaker’s commitment to harmonious and impactful relationships which will benefit the people and not power-tussles as was the case in the past. This, he said, can only bring progressive growth to the region and the State, and therefore commended Rt. Hon. Kalu for championing this.
Responding to a question on how Rt. Hon. Kalu’s position can impact Abia State and the South-East positively, Onuigbo pointed out that as Deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon. Kalu presides over the proceedings of the House in the absence of the Speaker and is therefore well-positioned to project the needs of the region. Onuigbo further asserted that as the Deputy Speaker and consequently the Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee of the Whole, Rt. Hon. Kalu superintends over the passage of Bills including those targeted at constitutional amendments and thus is strategically placed to continue to play a key role in championing the interests of the South-East and Abia State.
He further pointed out that the Deputy Speaker’s style of leadership has him in good terms with key decision makers at the federal level, and expressed optimism that he will leverage on that to continue to attract developmental projects to the South-East and Abia State.
Recall that the Grand Civic Reception, Thanksgiving, and Homecoming organised by the Bende Federal Constituency also witnessed the official launch of Rt. Hon. Kalu’s landmark project— Peace in South East Project (PISE-P)— targeted at rallying all stakeholders to use non-kinetic means to drive for lasting peace in the South East in order to create a conducive environment for sustained growth and development in the region.
The high-level events were attended by dignitaries across party lines and from all parts of the country including President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR, who was ably represented by the Vice-President, Senator Kashim Shettima GCON; Senate President, Senator Godswill Akpabio CON, represented by the Deputy Senate President, Senator Barau Jibrin; Abia State Governor, Dr Alex Otti OFR; Imo State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma; representatives of the Governors of Anambra, Enugu and Ebonyi States; Ooni of Ife; Obi of Onitsha; Emir of Bichi; Emir of Kano; current and former National Assembly Members; former Ministers; captains of industry; President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu; Traditional Rulers from Abia State; etc.