Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State, who turns 53 today, is a blessing to humanity, his Principal Secretary Dr. Pascal Obi, has said.
According to Obi, his boss, born on September 22, 1962, in Ogboko, Ideato South Local Government Area of Imo State, was born without the proverbial silver spoon in his mouth.
Nonetheless, he said Okorocha achieved greatness by combining resilience, rare intelligence and God’s grace.
“As we celebrate this icon, this patriotic and detribalised Nigerian leader, the Nostradamus of our time and by popular acclaim, the traditional prime minister of Igboland, on attaining 53 years, may we offer supplications to the Almighty God, who made the gift of Owelle to Imo State, and to humanity, to continue to bless and sustain him to greater heights in the years ahead”, Obi said.
According to the principal secretary, the governor’s humble background was behind his vow to become the silver lining in the cloud of the less privileged.
“Owelle’s passion to liberate people from poverty is anchored firmly on education, as he applies the ancient adage: ‘Give me fish and I shall feed for this moment; but teach me to fish and I shall feed a lifetime’. Governor Okorocha has demonstrated an uncommon love for education to the point of making it the cardinal focus of his Rescue Mission philosophy.
“Today, in Imo State, education is free from primary, secondary up to the tertiary level, including free books, sandals and stipends for primary school pupils; all to the consternation of sceptics, who never conjectured the feasibility of such social enterprise.
“Today, no Imo child has any excuse to remain illiterate; today every Imo family is a beneficiary of Owelle’s educational largesse”, Obi said.
According to the principal secretary, Okorocha launched the Rochas Foundation 14 years ago, even before becoming the governor. The foundation has five secondary schools of excellence in Owerri, Ogboko, Ibadan, Jos and Kano.
“This father of the poor, the comforter of the less-privileged, not only gave tuition, free books, free uniforms, free boarding and free meals, but partnered his wife, Nneoma Nkechi Okorocha, to adopt all the over 15,000 children of diverse ethnic backgrounds.
“As a governor, Owelle Okorocha stands tall among his peers. His unrivalled infrastructural transformation of Owerri, Orlu and Okigwe, along with many other landmark projects are legacies, which speak eloquently of his passion to leave footprints on the sands of time”.
The aid said Okorocha, in his second tenure, was focusing on industrial revolution and attracting foreign investors.
“The people have faith in their governor and we look forward to the harvest of industries, which he has commenced with the recovery of Avutu Poultry, Resin Paints, Aboh Mbaise, Paper Packaging Industry, Owerri-Ebeiri, etc”, he said.