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By Ifeoma Aniagbado  :

The Anambra State Ministry of Youth Development and the Anambra State Investment Promotion and Protection Agency (ANSIPPA), have agreed to collaborate in exploring the advantage of the recent inflow of investments into the state to open up massive job spaces for the youths of Anambra State.

This agreement, which was in line with the “One Government – One Agenda” philosophy of the present administration of Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, was reached during the visit of the Commissioner for Youth Development, Patrick Agha Mba, to the Managing Director ANSIPPA, Mark Okoye.

The Commissioner for Youth Development, who was accompanied by some members of the management team and technical committee of the ministry, said that the key objective of the visit was to present the programmes of the Ministry for possible areas of partnership with the private sector, which ANSIPPA could assist in facilitating.

While commending ANSIPPA for huge successes already recorded in attracting notable investors to Anambra State in line with the vision of Mr. Governor, the commissioner called for synergy between the ministry and the Agency as the ministry has a database of over 200,000 Anambra youths seeking for job opportunities. 

He said that the quickest way to achieve Mr. Governor’s goal of “Jobs, Jobs and Quality Jobs” is through the establishment of linkages between the young job seekers in the state and companies, especially the ones that are investing newly in the state.

Among the programmes of the ministry presented to ANSIPPA were the 1 Youth 2 Skills Solution, which is targeted at raising smart entrepreneurs as well as the Job-kikstart Solution Initiative, which the commissioner described as a means of bridging the gap between job seekers and employers of labour, in addition to making our graduates employable through necessary orientation and internship.

He commended the level of competence and commitment of the Managing Director of ANSIPPA,  thanking him for his support to the programmes of Youths.

Responding, the Managing Director ANSIPPA, Dr. Okoye, commended the governor and commissioner for the new youth development system, which is a complete deviation from normal government empowerment programmes. 

He described 1 Youth 2 Skills programme and the empowerment of 5000 youths to the tune of N2b as unprecedented in the history of the state, saying that the agency is highly aware of the local content policy of the present administration, hence will work with the Ministry of Youth Development to ensure that the youths of Anambra State were provided with adequate and timely information as well as support during recruitments by companies that are being attracted to the state. 

Okoye called on the need for skill acquisition in the tourism sector, especially now that the government is investing a lot in the Leisure Park and Five Star Hotel as well as other areas of tourism and hospitality.

The Meeting was attended by the Acting Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth Development, Mrs. Chito Osili; Special Assistant to Governor on Youth Development, Engr. Emeka Tony Omatah; ED – ANSIPPA Ejike Osisioma; Chief of Staff to MD ANSIPPA Chinedu Onyike; Congo Ajekwu, HOD Public Private Partnership (PPP) ANSIPPA; Executive Assistant to Governor on Youth Development, Mr. Chibuzor Udeh, and the Media Team of the Ministry of Youth Development.

*Ifeoma is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


By Angela Nwanodu  :

It is now widely known that Anambra State has set an impressive precedence, securing four prestigious awards at the 11th National Council on Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy (NCCIDE) meeting held in Kano State, Nigeria. While the awards ceremony may be in the past, their significance endures.

What may elude many is that these accolades were the outcome of a substantial presentation by the Anambra State ICT Agency team, illuminating the technological advancements and initiatives under the visionary leadership of Gov. Chukwuma Soludo.

These awards not only shine a spotlight on Anambra’s unwavering commitment to tech-driven governance but also accentuate a series of groundbreaking accomplishments in the realm of Digital Infrastructure Development. Here are the key achievements that paved way for the Digital Infrastructure award:

Enhanced Deployment of Fiber Ducts Across the State: In collaboration with private entities, the ICT Agency has significantly improved the deployment of over 2, 000 kilometers of fiber ducts across the State. This infrastructure development project stands as a testament to the State’s dedication to robust connectivity. 

The ongoing efforts focused on expanding this network to fortify digital communication, support economic growth, and bridge technological gaps within Anambra State.

Provision of a Data Centre: The ICT Agency is currently in the process of establishing a state-of-the-art Data Centre, reinforcing the State’s commitment to technological infrastructure development. Ongoing efforts involve strategic planning to ensure the seamless design, development, completion, and deployment of this essential project. The Data Centre will serve as a cornerstone for secure data storage, processing, and management, significantly contributing to the state’s digital resilience and efficiency.

Public Wi-Fi Initiative: The state government has initiated the Pilot Phase of the Free Public Wi-Fi (Solution Wi-Fi) at 3 locations in the state namely: Aroma Junction, Book foundation and Unizik back gate. This marks a considerable stride, and efforts are underway to extend this Public Wi-Fi, also known as Solution Wi-Fi, to various public spaces across the State in line with the People’s Manifesto.

Full Implementation of Zero Right of Way (RoW) policy to attract tech investors for infrastructure development: Gov. Soludo’s audacious move to fortify infrastructure has led to the full implementation of the Zero Right of Way (RoW) policy in Anambra State. This initiative has motivated InfraCos to enhance tech infrastructure in the state, resulting in an improved quality of service, including the phased introduction of 5G services by Telcos. Anambra proudly stands as the first State in the Southeastern region of Nigeria to implement this policy.

As the state continues its journey toward digital resilience and efficiency, these achievements stand as a beacon, inspiring other regions and reinforcing Anambra’s status as a leader in the digital landscape.

*Angela is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


By Ifeoma Aniagbado  :

The Commissioner for Youth Development, Mr. Patrick Agha-Mba has visited ICT centre in Ajani village, Ichida to underscore the significance of accessible primary education championed by Gov. Chukwuma Soludo.

The ICT centre, a memorial of Late Mrs. Ezinne Theresa Chiekezie by High Chief Innocent Chiekezie, served as a testament to the commitment to education for all in Anambra.

Addressing the students, Mr. Agha Mba specifically highlighted Gov. Soludo’s innovative Public Private Community Partnership (PPCP) program, emphasizing its role in providing essential ICT training for Anambra’s young pupils.

Expressing gratitude, he acknowledged Mr. Osita Ozalagba, Chairman of Ajani village, for actively facilitating the community’s utilization of the ICT centre.

Responding, Mr. Ozalagba expressed appreciation for Gov. Soludo’s administration and acknowledged Commissioner Agha-Mba’s dedication in inspecting and promoting ICT education within the community. 

According to him, this educational initiative aligns seamlessly with the vision of the donor, High Chief Innocent Chiekezie, focusing on nurturing a generation of global citizens capable of excelling at the highest levels of education.

*Ifeoma is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


By Angela Nwanodu  :

The Anambra State Government represented by a resourceful delegation from the State ICT Agency, led by the MD/CEO Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata, is actively participating in the 11th General Meeting of the National Council on Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy (NCCIDE).

The week-long event, which commenced on Jan. 22 to end on Jan. 26,, is being held at the Coronation Hall, Government House, Kano State, with the theme “Leveraging on Digital Technology and Innovation to Drive Nigeria’s Economic Growth and Development”.

The NCCIDE serves as the highest advisory body to the government on policies, programs, and strategies for national development in the realm of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and the digital economy. 

The primary objective of the meeting is to review actions taken by council members during the 10th council meeting and strategize toward achieving the Federal Ministry of Communication, Innovation, and Digital Economy’s strategic agenda for 2023-2027.

An outstanding highlight of the meeting so far is the Peer Review session, whose objective is to foster healthy competition, showcase state activities, facilitate mutual learning, and enhance collaboration among states in the advancement of digital innovations, skills, and digital economy policies.

Anambra State actively engaged in the ICT Peer Review session on Jan. 24, during which the state’s presentation garnered enthusiastic applause. The panel of judges, comprising industry experts, commended Anambra State for its outstanding presentation and highlighted the commendable decision to waive Right of Way charges. 

This progressive move was acknowledged for its significant contribution to fostering the growth of digital infrastructure, drawing attention and applause from the panel.

Mr Governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo, was recognized for his forward-thinking approach in supporting initiatives that propelled the state’s advancement in Information and Communication Technology. 

This derives from the continuous efforts and achievements of the Anambra State ICT Agency, further emphasizing the transformative journey championed by Gov. Soludo.

The Anambra State delegation emphasized that the agency looks forward to more opportunities to contribute to the growth and development of Anambra State and the nation.

The official announcement of the ICT Peer Review session results is scheduled for today after a meeting between the Minister of Communications and council members, which Anambra State ICT Agency is optimistic that the outcome will reflect the state’s dedication and hard work in advancing ICT initiatives.

*Angela is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


Anambra State has emerged as a force to be reckoned with, securing an incredible four prestigious awards during the ICT peer review session at the 11th National Council on Communication, Innovation and Digital Economy (NCCIDE) meeting held in Kano. 

The meeting was chaired by the Honorable Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, Dr. Bosun Tijani and hosted by the Kano State Governor, Engr Abba Kabir Yusuf.  

The vision of the administration of Mr Governor, Prof Charles Chukwuma Soludo, CFR, is to build a liveable and prosperous Smart Mega City and Mr. Governor is massively leveraging technology and digital innovation towards achieving this vision. 

The awards, a testament to Anambra’s commitment to excellence, innovation, and progress in the digital realm, are as follows:

 *The Overall Winner Best State in Digital Technology Development:* Here, Anambra State stood tall as the undisputed overall winner, scoring the highest number of points in all categories, showcasing its comprehensive dedication to advancing the state in the digital landscape. This award was presented to the MD/CEO, Anambra State ICT Agency, Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata (CFA) by the Kano State Governor, His Excellency, Engr Abba Kabir Yusuf. 

 *First Position Best State in Digital Infrastructure Technology Development:* Under this category, Anambra State was recognized as the leading state in ICT infrastructure development, following the full implementation of the Zero Right Of Way (RoW) policy,  implementation of an Internet Exchange Point; all emphasizing the state’s commitment to building a robust foundation for the prosperity of its people, using Technology. This award was presented by the Minister of CIDE, Dr. Bosun Tijani. 

 *First Runner-up in e-Government Implementation:* Anambra’s innovative e-government initiatives earned it the second position, highlighting the state’s effective use of technology in governance. The award was presented by the Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi. 

 *First Runner-up in Digital Technology Human Capital Development:* This award reinforces the state’s commitment to building a digitally-skilled and knowledgeable workforce and society in general. The final award was presented by the Kano State, Commissioner for Science, Technology and Innovation, Alhaji Mohammed Othman. 

It is noteworthy that Anambra’s impressive outing at the annual event that brings together the federal government and state underscores its strategic vision and exemplary but detailed execution in the realms of infrastructure, e-government, and human capital development under the visionary leadership of Governor Chukwuma Charles Soludo, CFR. 

The awards during the official opening ceremony, followed the earlier recognition received during the ICT Peer Review session, where Anambra’s presentation made by Dr. Florence Idigo, a Director in the State ICT Agency, garnered enthusiastic applause and commendation from industry experts.

Receiving the awards on behalf of Mr. Governor, the MD/CEO of the Anambra State ICT Agency, Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata, CFA, expressed profound appreciation to Mr. Governor for creating the enabling environment and a vision which guides the Agency in line with the ‘Everything Technology, Technology Everywhere’ mantra. 

CFA also dedicated the awards not only to the team at ICT Agency but to the co-operation and collaboration of the entire solution team for their hard work and dedication to Mr. Governor’s vision. 

“This achievement no doubt reflects our unwavering commitment to technological advancement and the transformative journey we are championing in Anambra State,” he concluded.


By Ifeoma Aniagbado :

The Anambra Ministry of Youth Development has proposed partnering with media houses to promote the 1YOUTH 2SKILLS program. 

In a meeting held with all the radio stations in the State, the ministry discussed collaboration modalities for publicizing this youth empowerment initiative.

Addressing the media representatives at his office in Government House Awka, the Commissioner for Youth Development, Mr. Patrick Agha Mba, emphasized the ministry’s goal of establishing an active information system to raise awareness about the program among indigenous and non-indigenous youths in the state. 

This awareness campaign aimed at mitigating insecurity, curb involvement in street activities, cultism, and robbery.

Mr. Agha Mba underscored Gov. Soludo’s manifesto, highlighting the significance of security as a top priority. 

He stressed the need for youths to possess multiple skills in response to the country’s current situation, affirming that the state government’s commitment to ensuring that every Anambra youth acquired at least two skills, thereby, fostering self-employment opportunities.

The Commissioner mentioned the ministry’s intention to collaborate with various elements essential for propelling the state toward a more livable and prosperous environment, Heemphasizing that partnering with the media would significantly increase youth participation and publicize the program among citizens.

He also said that 5,000 youths benefited from the pilot phase, with an expectation of 10,000 youths to benefit in two batches. Stressing the importance of collaboration, urging media representatives to outline their capacity to train youths in specific skill areas, facilitating a targeted approach.

Commending the media representatives for their attendance, Mr. Agha Mba highlighted their pivotal role as agents in propagating the 1YOUTH  2SKILLS program across the State.

Responding, the media representatives expressed their willingness to collaborate with the ministry in publicizing the state government program, pledging to discuss this partnership with their respective managements, devising modalities for effective collaboration.

Among those in attendance were Christopher Molokwu, Wazobia FM; Franklin Ebuka, Ogene FM; Amarachi Ekwueme, Blaze FM; Judy Nwabueze, ABS; Nelson Nwaenyi, Ebe Onadi FM; Monalisa Uzowulu, City Radio, and Chioma Chukwuemeka from Radio Sapientsa.

*Ifeoma is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


By Ukpa Ewa :

The Anambra State Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Welfare, Mrs. Ify Obinabo has called for a broader sensitisation of women on gender-based violence (GBV) in Nigeria as women and girls are mostly victims.

The commissioner, who received members of the Nigeria  Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) and Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) Women Committee, Anambra State Chapter in her office in Awka said there was need to sensitize people on gender based violence.

Mrs. Obinabo who spoke extensively on the ill treatment meted on women, advised parents to make out adequate time for their children while urging them to go back to the good old days of making inquiries before giving out their daughters in marriage.

Speaking during the courtesy call, the NAWOJ Chairperson, Mrs. Franklyn Onyekachi commended the Commissioner for Women Affairs for being in the fore front of the fight against gender based violence.

She further called for strict implementation and enforcement of Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Law.

The women who were marking  the 16 days of activism on GBV which has as its theme “Invest to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls” also paid a courtesy visit to the Managing Director of Anambra Broadcasting Service (ABS), Sir Chido Obidiegwu.

*Ukpa is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


By Okoli Sunday :

The Anambra State Government has handed over site for the construction of Internal Roads within the Solution Fun City, Awka.

Performing the handover ceremony, the Commissioner for Works, Engr. Ifeanyi Okoma said that the event signified the commencement of construction works, charging the Contractor to take full ownership of the project by ensuring that the work is done within the timeframe and according to specifications.

The Commissioner who was represented by the Director of Maintenance Department in the Ministry, Engr. Noel Okoye said that Gov. Chukuwma Soludo’s administration is poised to make Anambra State an arrival lounge instead of a departure lounge by creating a livable and prosperous homeland for everybody where people can live, invest, and enjoy returns on investment.

On his part, the Project Engineer of Ferotex Construction Ltd, Engr. Ola King, thanked the State Government for entrusting them with such huge responsibility, saying that the company would live up to expectations.

*Sunday is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


By Uche Kalu  :

Any society that neglects the development of its human capital is bound to retrogress in terms of growth and development. It is especially worrisome in Nigeria that even in the face of existing vacancies in several sectors of the economy, youths roam the streets without any form of gainful employment, giving rise to crimes and other social vices that bedevil the nation.

The Director General and Chief Executive of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Ariz Oluwatoyin Ogun said this during the graduation ceremony organized for 2023 batch of the National Industrial Skills Development Programmes (NISDP).

The event, being one of the first official functions of the DG since assumption of office was held in the Awka Area office of ITF. It featured the graduation of 150 students trained in various skills and presentation of start up packs to them.

Represented by the Deputy Director in charge of Finance, Mrs Felicita Ofodile while commending the graduands, urged them to utilize the opportunity provided by the training to make a decent living for themselves as well as their families, warning them of the consequences of selling the start up packs given to them.

The DG who thanked the Anambra State Governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo for providing an enabling environment for ITF to thrive in the state, noted that NISDP aimed at provision of skills that will create jobs to curb the rampant unemployment situation in the country and breed a new generation of entrepreneurs. 

He also said that in few weeks,  the Fund will unveil comprehensive policy thrust of its future.

In an interview, Mrs Ofodile noted that acquisition of skills builds the nation’s economy.

Responding on why some youths hate learning skills and other trades, she emphasised that every training starts from home, blaming some parents who are too busy to look after their children, noting that skill acquisition helps to reduce the rate of crime among youths.

In her address of welcome, the Awka Area Manager, ITF, Nancy Ekong, described the NISDP as an integral part of ITF expanded mandate and a policy directive from the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment (FMIT), designed to respond to skills shortages identified through an intensive research conducted by (ITF-UNIDO, 2012).

According to her, the thrust of the programme is to shore up the skills shortages by building capacity of the youths and ensure that they are employable by others or self-employed.

 “Since inception of NISDP in 2012, 3,700 youths of the state have been trained in the following trade areas: In 2012-2013 – Welding, Fabrication and Tiling. In 2014-2015 – Computer Hardware, Cosmetology, Pastry, and Phone repairs. In 2016, Cosmetology, Pastry, Yam/Cassava Processing and Fishery.

“Also in 2017 — Tiling, POP, Carpentry, Domestic Electrical Installation and Block/Bricks making. In 2017 (WOSEP) –Poultry, Food Processing and Pastry. In 2018 – Catering and Event Management, Aluminum Fabrication and Installation and other trades.

“Today, we are witnessing the closing ceremony of yet another 150 trainees in Anambra State. Three trade areas were identified in collaboration with the state government and other stakeholders. The Trade Areas were: Hairdressing/Beauty Care, Tailoring, Solar Panel Installation. We had four competent trainers, who were stationed in the various centres for a period of the three months who were frequently monitored by both officers from the Area Office and the headquarters to ensure compliance to standard. 

“Expectedly majority of the graduands of this programme will start-up their own businesses while others will be employed in various sectors of the economy, thus readily becoming potential members of various Business Member Organizations (BMOs).”

According to her, as partners in the implementation of the NISDP, the Bank of Industry (BOI) is to help provide the NISDP graduands access to “Start-Up” loans.

“Worthy of note is the huge support and collaboration given us by the state government for the actualization of this programme.”

While commending the graduands, Mrs Ekong explained that the prospect of NISDP is to provide opportunities for members of the Organized Private Sector (OPS) who complain of lack of skilled workforce, to draw from the pool of skilled technical middle level manpower that will be generated.

Some of the graduands, Chiamaka Ndubuisi trained on wig making, Chukwuemeka Ndigwe, Solar Installation and Stella — tailoring expressed gratitude to ITF for the opportunity to be trained in their various skills and promised to make proper use of the knowledge they got as well as contribute to the growth and development of the nation.

*Uche is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State


By Chisom Okafor   :

The Enugu State Agency for Universal Health Coverage team, understudies the State Health Insurance Agency (ASHIA) in a bid to improve the operations of their Health Insurance Scheme.

The Delegates from Enugu State Agency for Universal Health Coverage (UHC) paid a visit to ASHIA office in Awka to understudy the operations of the Scheme with a specific focus on the Claims management system for the Basic Healthcare provision fund (BHCPF) program and other programmes of ASHIA.

The Managing Director of ASHIA, Dr. Simeon Onyemaechi while receiving the two-man delegation assured that they will be adequately equipped with knowledge of Health Insurance practice, Claims management as well as the background of Basic Healthcare Provision Fund (BHCPF).

He gave them the general overview of Health insurance as it is practiced globally, then narrowed it down to the national and state health insurance schemes operations in Nigeria.

The MD, who spoke on the background of the BHCPF said that National Health Act 2014 in section 11 provides for a minimum of 1% of consolidated revenue of the Federal Government to be set aside to provide basic minimum package of health services to all Nigerians.

He further explained that the bodies charged with the mandate to implement this federal government policy include the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) and the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) through their subnational equivalence.

Dr. Onyemaechi noted that Claims Management begins from when the enrollee is still at the hospital, adding that every Claim starts with pre authorization code request that is sent when the request is approved and service rendered then Claims for payment are sent to the Agency at the end of every month.

He assured the visitors that the ASHIA team would provide them with all the knowledge they require.

 “We just don’t teach theory , my team will show you the practical aspects, you will also visit some of our healthcare providers to get  on-site hands-on experience.

He encouraged them to have an open mind and feel free to ask all the questions they had regarding Health Insurance and BHCPF programmes.

The Leader of the team, Dr. Marcus Agu, on behalf of the Enugu State Commissioner for Health, extended his appreciation to the MD for the opportunity to meet with him personally, and assured him of their willingness to learn from him.

Present at the meeting includes Dr. Mary Chukwuma, a member of the Enugu State delegates and ASHIA Heads of Departments.

 *Chisom is of the Ministry of Information, Anambra State.

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