Opinion: Obaze: Who The Cap Fits – By ESIN SUJI


IN every assemblage of human beings  as a family unit, kindred, organisation or geo-political entity – the pursuit and fulfilment of their collective interests and aspirations are derived principally from the quality of their leadership or management. Oseloka Obaze Resource endowments are one thing, but effective leadership remains the critical success factor for the development and progress of any entity.

The alternative is a nightmare of sorts, which members of the entity are compelled to live with at great costs. In November this year, the electorate of Anambra State will go to the polls to elect a Governor that would steer their affairs for a term of four years. It is not enough for the people to look forward to better days ahead, but they should exercise their right to make an informed choice of who of the candidates is equipped, competent and willing to make positive impact on their socio-economic and political well-being.

Take the sterling example of Oseloka Henry Obaze. Comprehensively educated and groomed in Nigeria and abroad, he has over the years acquired competencies and exposure that have established him as an asset to people and organisations he has worked for and interacted with. He was a member of the Nigerian Diplomatic Corps for some ten years under three Heads of State; and garnered varied experiences in policy, administration, management and politics.

In the United Nations system for over two decades, Oseloka Obaze interacted closely with some of the best technocrats in the world. He served under four Secretaries-General during which period he widened his horizon on best practices in the management of human and resources. Many people are unaware of the significant roles Oseloka Obaze played in the celebrated administration of  Mr. Peter Obi. While in the United Nations system, he was in the advisory team that helped generate the master blue-print, Anambra Integrated Development Strategy, ANIDS, which made simultaneous progress possible in all major sectors – in line with the then Millennium Development Goals , MDGs. In a similar vein, Oseloka Obaze has articulated a comparable programme of action within the framework of the current Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs.

He has thus demonstrated his firm grasps of the realities of modern management and corporate governance. It will bear repetition to that the SDGs are at the core of meaningful and regenerative development of both the people and society at large. Joining the Obi administration as Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Oseloka Obaze steadily added value to governance. Aside from energising the Office to become the engine room of the administration for policy coherence and co-ordination, he is also acknowledged for his active involvement in several strategic task teams, including rescue missions across the State.

These included membership of the State Economic Think-Tank and headship of the State Flood Disaster Emergency Fund and Flood Disaster Relief Co-ordination Committee. Though the incumbent Governor Willie Obiano duly retained him as SSG, their relationship was short-lived because the people’s welfare was not on the priority list of that administration. In private practice, Oseloka Obaze has been actively involved in advisory services on strategic planning & corporate management as well as the promotion of good governance. Indeed, he is so much sought-after that quite a number Federal and State MDAs have benefited immensely from his policy recommendations.

He is a responsible family man, married with children to Dr. Ofunne Omo Obaze, a Medical doctor who is also adding value to lives and the lot of women and children. He is a deserving recipient of several awards across the world; and belongs to a number professional and charitable organisations, which promote the welfare of humankind. Evidently a wise choice for his party, Oseloka Obaze will bring to bear on the office of Governor of Anambra State, commendable credentials – in knowledge, experience, prudence and integrity. He has a clear, realistic and feasible agenda for the development of the State.

A champion and a visionary, Oseloka Obaze is not our ‘typical’ self-seeking politician. Indeed, he has staked his name and reputation to be held accountable for actual delivery of his campaign promises when elected. On the contrary, some other candidates believe that campaigns are about running from pillar to post in grandiloquence. Of particularly sad note is the incumbent whose aides are concerned with running Oseloka Obaze down to divert attention from the nightmare their principal has put the people through in the last three years or so.

As a long-standing diplomat, Oseloka Obaze is a peace-builder who has contributed to the stabilisation of socio-polities in several countries. Given the opportunity to serve, he will be in the vanguard to restore peace to Anambra State, which has been severely fractured by the nepotistic and acrimonious pursuits of the present dispensation over the last three years. One of the unique features of the Oseloka Obaze campaign for office of Governor is that he is neither desperate nor forcing the issue.

As a man dedicated to decency and propriety, he is following due process; respectfully requesting the people of Anambra State to give him the mandate to add tremendous value to socio-economic and political well-being. He has done it elsewhere – locally, nationally and internationally. The people of Anambra State are enlightened and know their rights, but they should not allow their mandate to be abducted again by corrupt predators. The choice is theirs.Vanguard

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