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Appreciating Security In Anambra During The Yuletide

Written By: Ikenna Aniagbaso

Governor Willie Obiano’s achievement in security can easily be measured by the thousands of Ndi Anambra and their friends who visited the state to enjoy the Christmas and New Year festivities. Governor had asked Ndi Anambra to return home for the Christmas and New Year holidays, assuring them of safety. From verifiable indications, the call was heeded and the Yuletide and New Year festivities were celebrated in peace and safety.

Anambra was agog with activities. Every high profile event was attended by the top elite of the political, traditional, business and entertainment class, unlike some years ago when Christmas holiday and other events such as traditional weddings were celebrated outside the state.

But the story was different this time as notable personalities of Anambra descent returned home for the festivities and hosted their events on home soil. Many other religious and social events like annual thanksgiving and harvest programmes, traditional and church weddings, Ofala festivals, concerts, house warming, child dedications, family reunions, title taking ceremonies and lots more, which took place within the period, were totally crime-free.

The peaceful and secure environment ushered in new additions in the entertainment schedule of the Christmas and New Year celebrations. Interestingly, the state became home for top Nigeria’s DJs, Comedians, hip hop and afro beat stars and other numerous homegrown and upcoming artistes.

Phyno, Slow Dog and Mr Real set the ball rolling with outstanding performances at the Voices of Happiness Christmas Carols and Concert, organized by the Anambra State Government. This was followed sequentially by other privately organized events, which attracted entertainment icons like Tuface Idibia, Davido, Nigga Raw, DJ Jimmy Jatt, DJ Neptune, KCee and Flavour n’Abania among many others

Amazingly, these events happened, sometimes simultaneously, in the over 2000 villages making up the 179 communities in Anambra state between December 25, 2019 and January 10, 2020, and even beyond.

The sheer number of people at every of the event and the traffic generated by vehicles on Anambra roads gave the impression that more people returned home to Anambra this festive season than any other season in the past 6 years, yet the state remained peaceful and crime free. Ndi Anambra, indeed, enjoyed their holiday in comforting safety and reassuring security.

But then, the Obiano-led Government prepared ahead of time. Security has always been Sir Willie’s priority. His efforts from the early days of his administration in 2014, helped the state to transform from a notorious and crime-prone state to the present, popular and widely adjudged safest state in Nigeria.

The Governor’s periodical and seasonal launch of security operations like Operation Udoka, Operation Kpochapu I, Christmas Security Operation and more recently, Operation Kpochapu II, has also aided the sustenance of his major achievements in security. This, probably, is one of the reasons why Pope Francis, from far away Rome, Italy, spotted Governor Willie Obiano for investiture as KNIGHT COMMANDER OF THE PONTIFICAL ORDER OF SAINT GREGORY THE GREAT (KCSG).

As 2020 begins to pick up, it gladdens the heart that despite daunting safety and security challenges, adequate preparations, motivation of security personnel, massive and timely deployment of equipment, including but not limited to, mobile surveillance cameras, surveillance helicopters, smart city patrol vehicles and motorbikes, fire-fighting equipment, etcetera, helped to ensure that Anambra state had a peaceful and joyful festive season.

It is clear that the state cannot go back to the dark days of lawlessness and impunity, for Governor Obiano has laid the security roadmap and the course to a safer and more secure Anambra.

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