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Gov. Mbah has done well in 100 days, says USA Igwesi; urges politicians to be patient
A collage of Governor Peter Mbah and Rt. Hon. Ikemba USA Igwesi

Gov. Mbah has done well in 100 days, says USA Igwesi; urges politicians to be patient


Former member of House of Representatives and founder of Peter Mbah Grassroots Canvassers, USA Igwesi, in this interview, highlighted some of the achievements of the new administration in Enugu State. Among other issues, he said Governor Peter Mbah has started fulfilling his campaign promises to people of the state.

Governor Mbah has recently completed 100 days in office, what is your objective assessment of his stewardship so far?


I would say that so far, so good. You know that the governor is not the typical Nigerian politician that makes promises without bothering about fulfilling them. From his achievements so far, it is obvious that whatever he promised Enugu people during the campaigns, he will surely fulfill and even more. Look at his appointments. He is carefully selecting those to work with and so far, it has been a question of round pegs in round holes. One thing I know about the governor is that he does not make empty promises. The most typical example is his promise that public water would run in Enugu within his 180 days in office. So many people who know the history of Enugu and the challenges of water scarcity were laughing at him saying the governor was making a promise that was impossible to fulfill within the time frame. But just about 100 days, the public water is already coming alive in the Coal city state. The issue of water is one of the most practical examples of where the state is heading to.

In his inaugural speech, Governor Mbah was emphatic that he would transform Enugu into a beautiful symphony of development. He declared that his governance philosophy would be based on transparency, accountability and fund traceability. See what he did as his first executive task; he signed Executive Order 001 called the Citizens’ Charter. That tells you that his government will be centred on the people.

But some of his critics say he does not understand the terrain of Enugu very well as he has been operating in Lagos where he has businesses for a very long time? Do you agree?


I can tell you that he knows Enugu like the back of his hands. He held strategic positions under former Enugu Governor, Chimaroke Nnamani and has businesses also in Enugu even today. This is a man who has done so much in terms of philanthropy in the state. But beyond that, for six months during the campaigns, he traversed the length and breadth of Enugu State visiting the 68 development centres that make up the state. During that time, he listened to the people, saw their challenges and practically felt their pains.

How far do you think he is following his manifesto which is his social contract with the people of Enugu State in the next four years?

Governor Peter Mbah’s administration has taken meaningful strides towards building a better Enugu State, reflecting his dedication to transparency, accountability, and social inclusivity. One of his key accomplishments has been the meticulous selection of government officials across different socio-economic sectors, emphasizing competence, gender equality, and representation from all corners of Enugu.

Grounded in his compelling manifesto for Ndi Enugu and echoing the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Mbah’s initiatives are more than just promises—they’re a vision for a brighter future.


But in specific terms, what other areas do you think he has done well?

The governor is already using his wealth of experience and exposure globally to impact on the state. Can you imagine that within 100 days, he has been able to influence the UK High Commission to set up a Visa Application Centre in Enugu. In my widest imagination, I never thought it was possible considering the complex politics of Nigeria vis-à-vis the Igbo question. The UK High Commissioner, Richard Montgomery was unequivocal that Mbah played a major role in facilitating the setting up of the Visa Application Centre which is a plus for Enugu and the South East socio-economically and otherwise. With the cheery development, it is now more convenient for the people of the South East to apply for the various visas in Enugu instead of flying to Abuja/Lagos/Port Harcourt?

Also, I can make bold to say that Enugu State is comparatively safer in Mbah’s 100 days in terms of security of lives and property. The administration has been able to significantly arrest the sit-at-home conundrum and substantially tackled the security situation in the state.


Part of his actions was to launch a pilot scheme of the Distress Response Squad (DRS)? There is ongoing effort to construct the Control and Command Center to complement the DRS to put the entire Enugu State under security surveillance.

I talked about the governor’s promise on water before. His administration rapidly increased water production from less than 2 million litres to over 25 million litres in 100 days, the highest in over 20 years? The long abandoned reservoirs are being fixed in 100 days and some parts of Enugu have already started seeing the efforts of the state government in water production.

See what the governor has done on power. Within this short time, the administration has developed the Enugu State Electricity Bill in 100 days to enable the state to domesticate the Electricity Act 2023, create electricity market, boost power generation, transmission, and distribution and attract private sector investment in the power sector? When he used ‘Tomorrow is here’ as the theme of his campaign, people were asking what did he mean and that politicians have come again. But we are all seeing it. He is working round the clock.

Within the short time, the administration has mapped out 71 urban roads and 10 inter-local government roads in addition to flyovers, etc. for construction, beginning immediately after the rains. It is obvious to everybody that waste/refuse disposal in Enugu has substantially improved in the last 100 days. The compactors are now back to the business of waste disposal in the state and Enugu is coming back to life again. The street and traffic lights are gradually returning.

One area he is passionate about is in the use of technology to achieve results. Most services in Enugu are being automated or digitalized to achieve maximum results. In Enugu today, you can get your C-of-O in 72 hours, the fastest in Africa. You would agree with me that it would have a direct impact in terms of ease of doing business.

What I have noticed is that his wealth of experience in the private sector is a blessing to Enugu State. You can imagine that within 100 days, the present administration has held a very successful investment roundtable in Enugu. You know the benefits of such an investment and economic roundtable with the UK Govt, Afreximbank, AfDB, and investors from around the globe.

Within this period, the Mbah administration has released the counterpart funds for the state’s participation in international development agencies’ agricultural programmes. All these programmes are expected to trigger the inflow of millions of dollars and create wealth and value addition in the state especially the rural areas. The Mbah administration has also shown commitment to take care of the cost of every capital development project undertaken by the 17 LGAs to the tune of 60 percent.
I would say without any fear of equivocation that the governor is fulfilling his social contract with the people of Enugu state.

Most roads in Enugu are begging for repair and rehabilitation; how far has the governor addressed the challenges in that area?

The Enugu State government has embarked on an extensive road construction and rehabilitation project addressing urban and rural areas. This initiative involves constructing 71 roads within Enugu metropolis and 10 major roads connecting different parts of the state. Additionally, the plan includes dualizing key roads and building flyovers to alleviate traffic congestion, notably at Abakpa Junction and Chris Chemist/Old Park Junction. This comprehensive road infrastructure project aims to enhance connectivity, reduce travel times, and stimulate economic growth. In addition, the rehabilitation of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) orientation camp represents a significant investment in youth development and well-being. Modernizing facilities, providing clean water access, improving roads, and addressing other amenities in the orientation camp create a conducive environment for youth training and enhances the local community’s infrastructure.

During the campaigns, the governor talked about the diversification of the state’s economy. How far with that promise?

The Enugu State government has already started to do something in that direction. The new administration has partnered with Ethiopian Airlines to foster mutual growth and development. The collaboration aims to explore various opportunities, including training Enugu’s youths at the Ethiopian Airlines Aviation University and other areas of interest. This partnership holds significance in economic development and diversification, as it aligns with the Enugu State Government’s efforts to boost the state’s Gross Domestic Product through such collaborations. The partnership also underscores the commitment of both parties to work together for common benefits. This initiative aligns with the United Nations SDG 8 by promoting economic diversification, job creation, and skills development for the youth population in Enugu. Additionally, it contributes to SDG 17 by exemplifying a collaborative effort between a government entity and a private enterprise to achieve sustainable development outcomes.
I would also like to talk on what he has achieved in sports development. Some of the achievements include the gold medal won at the 2023 Commonwealth Youth Games and the successful hosting of team sports elimination to the National Youth Games and others.
The greatest achievement was when Enugu State’s Destiny Agbo made history in Port Louis, Trinidad and Tobago, winning a gold medal in the female Discus Para-athletics Discus event. Para-athletics is organized sports meeting for people living with disabilities.
Agbo’s medal was won at the Commonwealth Youth Games, held from July 30th to August 15th.

Enugu also hosted the South East Under-15 Youth Games Team Sports zonal elimination where Enugu male football and handball teams qualified for the national event. The elimination took place between August 10 and 13 at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadiums with all the South East states in attendance. Recently, the Enugu darling club, Rangers International Football Club also narrowly lost 0-1 to Bendel Insurance of Benin, on June 21 at the Federation cup final in Asaba, Delta. The Ministry of sports in Enugu also, in collaboration with the Potters Wheel Foundation, graduated more than 100 youths in various skills in July. The youths were trained in Confectioneries, Cosmetics, Digital marketing, Tailoring and others.

There are insinuations that many core politicians in Enugu are not happy with Governor Mbah’s appointments and that they feel alienated from his government. How true is that?

It is not true. When I started this interview, I told you that Governor Mbah is not the typical, traditional Nigerian politician that you know. He has his style of approaching issues. To him, two issues are involved here. One is first and foremost the collective interest of the entire people of Enugu State. How his action will impact the people of Enugu state is his primary priority. Then, the second is the interest of the politicians as you have said. From inception, the governor had set goals for himself and he had a clear idea of how and who will help him realise his vision. That was what you saw in the appointments so far. Some of those appointees, he didn’t even know them personally but he believes that they have the competence to deliver on their mandates. However, I can assure you that with his level of exposure, he knows the importance of the politicians to the success of his government. The governor was with them in the political jungle during the campaigns and knows the roles various people played. Governor Mbah that I know will not ignore the politicians as some people claim. He has their interests at heart and will carry them along in his government. The governor is just barely 100 days in office, so people should give him time to settle down. There are still so many areas where the new administration will involve many other people including the politicians they are talking about.


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