By Ononye VC
Promotion exercises in Anambra state, as in other states, are always filled with tensions, influence peddling, favour cashing and alleged acts of candidates ‘subventing’ the examiners. This has been no better among teachers in the state. Last week, another round of promotion examinations took place under the new ASUBEB Chairman, Dr. Franca Ego Obi.
News started flying and looks of shock and expressions of disbelief were seen on candidates’ faces. Far from what used to be, the Chairman made it explicitly clear that due process must be followed and ONLY your output will see you through. Candidates could not believe that a public servant, in our time, will stick to due process than cut corners to make millions of naira. The disbelief gradually turned into a huge relief, surely.
I, first, heard from a friend about this but dismissed it with a wave of the hand but when another mutual friend spoke strongly about their experience, I was moved to widen my reach to ascertain if there’s any truth to the claims. I found much more than I was told.
Some people attempted to pay their way through instead of writing their way through but met a brick wall in Dr. Obi.
One of the candidates actually, went further to explain that such actions of Dr. Obi are not new. She said that she knew her antecedents as a teacher at CKC Onitsha where she was feared as if she was the Principal herself. Her output as Principal of Community Secondary school Oraukwu stood her out not to mention her records as Principal of Urban Girls Secondary School, Fegge, Onitsha. At Urban Girls, her voice could be heard reverberating all around the school ensuring that all is in the right place. Teachers under her sit up and aright when in school yet they love her so much for being a shield to them against bullying parents and other people. According to another teacher who served under Dr. Obi at Urban Girls, if you like to work well, she would be your best mate but if you are derelict, she would be your nightmare. Above all, her courage and confidence can be incredible. None of us, the teacher said, were surprised at her appointment to the position of the Chairman of ASUBEB.
Now more curious, I visited ASUBEB headquarters under cover to observe events and saw the new facelift of the compound which I knew from my previous visits to be an eyesore. I saw people going about their duties as it used to be under Chief Nzemeka Olisa as ASUBEB Chairman. A little chat with some staff testified to how the Chairman works too much. I left fully satisfied that serious times are back at ASUBEB. May God give us more of Dr. Obi and Anambra will remain a beacon of hope to other states in Nigeria.
Anambra state has been blessed by the Almighty in more ways than one. A huge base of extra talented people is one of the greatest gifts God has bestowed Anambra state with. Side stepping the boredom it will be in presenting a roll call, it is sufficient to thank God for a new dawn at ASUBEB headquarters.