Soludo’s sterling performance makes the job of the opposition extremely difficult

Last Sunday, in an event organized by the Labour Party, Afam Ogene, the member representing Ogbaru Federal Constituency in the House of Representative, in a bid to talk down the sterling achievements of Governor Chukwuma Soludo, remarked that “it is not about constructing roads alone… even an individual can construct roads’’.

This is coming three weeks after the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2021 Anambra State governorship election and now a member of the Labour Party, Mr. Valentine Ozigbo, lied on national television that “rains have washed away all the roads” commissioned by Governor Soludo.

The current ongoing road revolution in Anambra State makes the job of the opposition very difficult. Mr. Afam Ogene and Mr. Valentine Ozigbo are finding it hard to come to terms with the infrastructural development going on in Anambra. Surprisingly, their strategy is to throw a wrench in the gears of the government in Anambra – lying and unnecessary fault findings seem to be part of this strategy. This is not how a responsible opposition should function. A responsible opposition should genuinely scrutinize government actions and provide alternatives. It should not lie to citizens in order to look good.

During the 2021 gubernatorial campaigns and electioneering process, the number one complain the people presented to Governor Soludo was on the state of the roads in the state. On assuming office in March 2022, the governor declared a state of emergency on roads. Today, there is an ongoing road construction revolution and an average of 10km of brand-new roads are paved on a monthly basis, using the highest quality available in the construction industry (Governor Soludo has maintained this rate of road construction since he assumed office in 2022). This is exclusive of the massive road maintenance works in the state.


Take the recently commissioned 26km Amansea-Ebenebe-Ugbenu-Ugbene-Awba Ofemili Road for example. With this new road, it takes 25 minutes to drive from Awba Ofemili to the state’s capital, Awka. This is a journey that took up to 3 hours in the past – especially during the rainy season. In some cases – especially when the rains were more than expected – the road was impassable.

The impact of this new road is becoming visible. The movement of food and farm produce from Awba-Ofemili – which is a major food basket in the state – is now seamless. It is not surprising that today Anambra has the lowest rate of food inflation in the south-east and in southern Nigeria. (In the NBS recently released food inflation numbers for March 2024, food inflation was highest in the South-South zone at 43.71% closely trailed by the South-East at 42.72% and the South-West at 42.08%. Anambra was at 39%).

What about the massive construction of the internal roads and roads leading to major markets in Onitsha? Despite the fact that the Onitsha Main Market is the biggest market in Africa based on geographical size and volume of goods, roads leading to that market were in deplorable conditions. Today, major roads leading to the Onitsha Main Market are taking a new look. In fact, one major access road to the market which had been converted to a refuse dump in the last 18 years now has a water fountain on it. Traders from neighboring states are now coming back to Onitsha Main Market.


The ongoing transformation in Anambra State has touched all the sectors of the economy in the state.

The current free basic education and the free ante-natal and delivery services have impacted the lives of vulnerable citizens. Massive numbers of teachers and health workers have been recruited. Delipidated Schools and hospitals are being revamped. Pipe-borne water is now getting to communities that did not have it. Law and order have returned to Anambra State. The issue of insecurity has been tackled head-on. Today, perpetrators of crimes in Anambra are apprehended within days unlike in the past where they could go scot-free. The number of gun-shot injuries reported in hospitals have gone down by over 80%.

Most importantly, the welfare and training of civil servants who are supposed to implement government policies are being addressed. Lingering court cases with civil servants are being resolved – the recently concluded out of court settlement with staff of the state’s water corporation who had been on a 14-year dispute with Anambra State Government is one example.

Despite all this, Governor Soludo says Ndi Anambra ‘ain’t seen nothing yet’. In the coming months, a massive road dualization project linking Anambra State to Imo State would commence. The dualization of other high-impact roads are also scheduled to commence this year. The construction of the biggest hotel and probably the only 4-star hotel in the south-east would commence in the coming weeks. By the end of the year, the biggest amusement and water park in the south-east would be up and running.  The designs for three brand-new smart cities in the state – Onitsha 2.0, Awka 2.0 and Anambra Industrial City – are almost complete.


Obviously, all these landmark achievements make the work of the opposition difficult. It is difficult for them to argue constructively and to provide better alternative plans for Anambra. Expectedly, their strategy is to lie, raise up mundane issues and, of course, set ‘booby traps’ for the government. But this is not how to be a responsible opposition. The opposition in Anambra should remember that in the end all that matters is the welfare of the people and not their own personal interests or ambitions!

Nwankwo is the special adviser to Soludo on special projects.

Views expressed by contributors are strictly personal and not of TheCable.
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