Sam Onuigbo served in the 9th assembly alongside deputy speaker Kalu and is thus in a good position to speak to his leadership style and capacity
Member representing the South-East on the Governing Board of the North-East Development Commission (NEDC), Rep. Sam Onuigbo has hailed the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rep. Benjamin Kalu, as a true example of how governance impacts the common man when leaders approach it as a collaboration for the growth of the people and not as a competition between arms of government or political parties.
Rep. Onuigbo stated this while speaking to reporters following the grand civic reception organised for Rep. Kalu by the Abia State Government on December 28, and a civic reception, thanksgiving, and homecoming organised by Bende federal constituency on December 29, 2023.
The event also included the official launch of Kalu’s pet project— Peace in South East Project (PISE-P)— targeted at rallying stakeholders to use non-kinetic means to drive for lasting peace in the south-east zone in order to create a conducive environment for sustained growth and development in the region.
Describing Kalu as an intelligent politician who has mastered the art of inclusive and collaborative leadership, the member of the 8th and 9th House of Representatives, said that Abians in particular and Nigerians in general, would reap immensely from the style of leadership of the deputy speaker.
Rep. Onuigbo, who was inducted in the Most Valuable Parliamentarian (MVP) Hall of Fame in May this year, said that the harmony which exists between Rep. Kalu, the Abia State Government, and other political leaders of the south-east geopolitical zone testifies to the deputy speaker’s commitment to harmonious and impactful relationships which will benefit the people and not power-tussles.
The NEDC board member, who serves as the chairman of the committee on security, climate change, and special intervention, enjoined him to continue on the path of people-centric leadership as such “can only bring progressive growth to the region.”
Responding to a question on how Kalu’s position can impact Abia State and the south-east positively, he pointed out that as deputy speaker, he is positioned to project the aspirations of people in the region. “Kalu presides over the proceedings of the House in the absence of the Speaker and consequently the Chairman of the House of Representatives committee of the whole is therefore well-positioned to project the needs of the region,” he explained.
Onuigbo further explained that Rep. Kalu superintends over the passage of bills including those targeted at constitutional amendments and thus is strategically placed to continue to play a key role in championing the interests of the zone and Abia State.
He stressed that the deputy speaker’s style of leadership places him in good terms with key decision makers at the federal level, and expressed optimism that he will leverage on that to continue to attract developmental projects to the zone and the state.
The high-level events were attended by dignitaries across party lines and from all parts of the country including President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR, who was ably represented by the Vice-President, Senator Kashim Shettima GCON; Senate President, Senator Godswill Akpabio CON, represented by the Deputy Senate President, Senator Barau Jibrin; Abia State Governor, Dr Alex Otti OFR; Imo State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma; representatives of the Governors of Anambra, Enugu and Ebonyi States; Ooni of Ife; Obi of Onitsha; Emir of Bichi; Emir of Kano; current and former National Assembly members; former ministers; captains of industry; President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu; and traditional rulers from Abia State; among others.