The newly-elected President-General of the Ogwashi-Uku Development Association (ODA), Mr. Emmanuel Ashinze has condemned the factional crisis in the nine villages of Ogwashi-Uku. Ashinze gave the condemnation during an interview with HardReporters correspondent shortly after his victory at the ODA National Delegates Conference held Tuesday in Ogwashi-Uku to elect a new executives for the Association.
According the President General, the task of addressing the issue of factions that have polarized the nine villages of Ogwashi-Uku remain the major priority of the new ODA executive with a view to entrenching lasting peace for the progress of the community.
“The first thing I intend to do is to get peace to Ogwashi-Uku, because if you listen to my speech before the election, I made it clear that we cannot continue like this, we can not move forward if we live in factions. For instance, today before the elections, I was Secretary of Ogbeubu village Reconciliation Committee, because of factions there. Also, it took us time to resolve issues of two factions in Agidiasei village.
“It took us time to resolve issues in Umuonitcha village because there are two factions, just name them, almost all our villages facing are in factional crises which is not healthy for the overall development of Ogwashi-Uku. Also, if you go to Umudei village, there have seven houses faction, Azungwu village on its own, have about five family factions. In our villages today, we have different different factions, but we use to be only nine village.
“Before now, those of us who grow up here in Ogwashi-Uku, remembered that we are known as Ogwashi Ebo Iteneni (Ogwashi Nine Villages). But, today, what do we have? multiple factions in almost all the villages. I keep on asking, when did we get to this, we can not continue like this, we we must move forward as a community,” Ashinze said.
He also disclosed that the new executive would reactivate the old community peace committee to work out modalities get peace back in all the various villages of the community.
The PG also listed other projects to be executed by the new executive to include the reconstruction of the Central Motor park at the Ogwashi-Uku main market to a befitting status.
“Federal lawmaker, Hon. Joan Mrakpor had planned to do something at the motor park when she was in the State House of Assembly, however, she only succeeded in constructing some few stalls and left the job. I am going to look for all the money-bags from the community to poll resources and fix the motor park with interlocking blocks. Ogwashi-Uku people must take the challenge and make the park better,” Ashinze said.
The president general also disclosed plans to reconstruct the community town hall, which he said was too small to accommodate a generality of the people during community meetings and other events.
“One of the projects we also intend to execute, is the reconstruction of the community town hall, as you can see here today, many people are sitting outside the hall. We are going to pull it down and extend it so our people can have a bigger and better place to hold meetings and events, and it will be fully furnished,” he said.
Ashinze, a retired school principal, polled 77 votes to defeat his closest challenger, Mr. Izu Osamor, who came out second with 67 votes. Renowned auto dealer, Mr. Andrew Okocha, Chief Executive Officer of AC Okocha Motors Ltd. came out third with 47 votes, while the fourth candidate, Mr. Chuks Nwandu polled 12 votes.
Other elected executives include, Ikechukwu Adigwe, (1st Vice-President), Nwaekete John (2nd Vice-President), Frank Ikeji, (Secretary-General), Frank Ohei (Assistant Secretary), and Elue Adigwe (Publicity Secretary), Onukwu Elue (Financial Secretary), Nobei Onyebu (Legal Adviser), Iloba Chiedu (Provost 1) and Ifechukwude Boy (Provost 2).