By Gabriel Chy Alonta
The United Nations, through her Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr. Edward Kallon, has commended Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, over achievements in infrastructure, health, security and economic growth.
According to the UN Chief, such a gesture by the state government is in tandem with the achievement of sustainable development goals (SDGs).
Mr. Kallon, alongside Heads of other international agencies including, WHO and UNICEF, made the commendation during a 2-day working visit to Anambra State.
Mr. Kallon, accompanied by WHO country representative, Dr. Walter Kazadi Molondo and Chief Field Officer “A” UNICEF Enugu, Mr. Ibrahim Kahlil Conteh, visited the head office of the Anambra State Health Insurance Agency (ASHIA) and Ministry of Health, Awka, and expressed satisfaction with the level of technology being utilized by the agency to provide healthcare services in the state.
Speaking after the tour that included a visit to the Anambra International Cargo and Passenger Airport, Umueri, Mr. Kallon described the ongoing projects in the state as laudable, and advised Governor Obiano to enact laws that would empower people to protect and manage such projects. He said the project would serve as a foundation for economic growth and development.
Mr. Kallon while commending the governor for employing technology in the management of security, assured that the United Nations is desirous of increased partnership with the state. He also promised that the UN would support the airport with Migration Data Systems, MIDAS technology.
According to him, Anambra has gone ahead of many states because of Governor Obiano’s ingeniousness manifested as transparency, accountability and fiscal sustainability which birthed the Anambra Choose Your Project Initiative, advancements in agriculture, among others.
Mr. Kallon later at a meeting with Governor Obiano at the Governor’s Lodge launched the first ever Mobile Technology Health Insurance Platform, MTHIP, in Nigeria to enable those in the remotest part of the State key into the State health insurance scheme without stress. The initiative is supported by WHO with funding from the European Union.
In his remarks, Governor Obiano said his administration had been making efforts to ensure sustainability. He equally expressed optimism that he would hand over to a successor with better reach and capacity to “shoot up the trajectory of today”.
The WHO Country representative, Dr. Molondo and Chief Field Officer “A” UNICEF Enugu, Mr. Conteh, assured more effective collaboration with the state government, having been satisfied with the impact made so far with funds provided by the international agencies.
Speaking on the sideline of the event, the Chief Medical Director, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu Teaching Hospital, Amaku Awka, Dr. Josephat Akabuike, while commending the international agencies for their support, noted that their visit was a clear indication of a working partnership, which, he said, had benefited Anambra people in many ways.
Decoration of Governor Obiano, the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Vincent Okpala, among others, as Champions of Sustainable Development Goals by Mr. Kallon and his team formed the high point of the working visit.