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By Peter Nwasike

The Anambra 7th House of Assembly, celebrate one year in office, having been inaugurated on June 12, 2019, and on Friday, June 12, 2020, invited guests for modest celebration, preceding with Thanksgiving Church Service, officiated by the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev. Dr. Paulinus Ezeokafor. Bishop Ezeokafor commended the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Uchenna Victor Okafor, for his piety in seeking God’s intervention with Thanksgiving Mass, adding that “Unless God builds the house, labourers toil in vain”. He prayed that the intentions of the conveners of the ceremony shall be granted by God, as their services are for God and humanity.

Bishop Ezeokafor commended the lawmakers for championing the interests of the people at grassroots, as was seen during the COVID.19 LOCKDOWN, when they sensitized their various constituencies, on the appropriate measures to be taken for efficacious prevention, as well as giving them free materials and food items, to ameliorate the situation. He expressed delight that during their tenure of 6th Assembly, they complemented his advocacy by enacting laws for frugal funeral ceremonies and humanitarianism on patients of Sickle Cell Sickness, which had been signed into law by the Governor. He commended the cordial relationship between the Legislature and the Executive, which have facilitated peace and prosperity in the State.
Bishop Ezeokafor remarked on the threat to security, existing in some rural areas, and referred to Dunukofia and Ayamelum Local Government Areas, where herdsmen use their cattle to terrorize farmers out of their farmlands, as the herdsmen seek for open grazing for their cattle. He noted that all over the world, modern system of occupation is espoused, and that is why mechanized agriculture is practiced by farmers, with machines, for growing and processing food items. In such cases, cattle rearing, which is Animal Husbandry, is done by CATTLE RANCHING. He urged the lawmakers to emulate their counterparts elsewhere, and enact law on CATTLE RANCHING, so that farmers and herdsmen can co-exist peacefully, in their respective lucrative businesses.
The Speaker, Rt. Hon. Uchenna Victor Okafor, noted that the Legislature has three main functions, which are,
(a) Positive representation of their people
(b) Enacting good laws
(c) Oversight functions, on how the Executive implement their laws in building projects
He said that they are alive to their responsibilities in positive representations, as seen that lawmakers often sponsor motions, for necessary projects in their areas, among them road infrastructures, erosion control. During the COVID.19 pandemic, lawmakers were magnanimous in sensitizations and palliative measures to their people, which helped to combat the deadly virus. The Legislature also co-operated with the Executives in controlling the COVID.19, both individually and collectively, as they set up a Committee for that, led by the Deputy Speaker. He said that in making laws, and motions for good governance, the COVID.19 and Infections and Dangerous Diseases Prevention and Eradication, Budget 2020 Appropriation, Anambra State Erosion and Watershed Management laws, were made, to mention but a few. He intimated that in the next one year, they shall, introduce innovation such as LEGISLATIVE BUDGET AND RESEARCH OFFICE (LEBRO), with modest printing press, for enhancement of legislative engineering, and appealed for philanthropists for help to actualize the project. He pledged continued cordiality with the Executive and also expressed gratitude to Bishop Ezeokafor, for sanctifying the Legislature, with the Holy Mass, as it has assured them of God’s intimacy with them, and they shall be motivated to work with vigour, vision and optimism of success.
In his remarks, Governor Willie Obiano, congratulated the Legislature, and pledged to reciprocate their kind gesture, for mutual understanding, respect and co-operation of each other, as their services are for the people. Among those present on the occasion were Rev. Fr. Michael Muonwe, Secretary, Awka Diocese, Rt. Hon. Paschal Agbodike, Deputy Speaker, Hon. Peter Ibida (Njikoka II), Mr. Pius Udoh, Clerk of the House and many others. 



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