Chief Ikechukwu Asadu, the traditional ruler-elect of the Edem Ani autonomous community in Enugu State’s Nsukka Local Government Area, has said that the high rate of unemployment in Nigeria is the main cause of youth depression.
The youth require support from the government and kindhearted people, according to Asadu, a practicing nurse in Texas, in the United States of America, USA. COVID-19 had disastrous consequences on the economies of many countries throughout the world.
He gave a speech on Tuesday at his rural home, Edem Ani, after winning the traditional ruler election run by Charles Egumgbe, the Enugu State Commissioner for Chieftaincy Affairs, with a total of 715 votes.
In order to express his gratitude to his supporters for placing their trust in him, Asadu also donated a truckload of 100 kg of food. He also praised Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi for allowing the election to take place.
“I feel elated over this victory. I didn’t know that the people of my community love me this much. I started by asking the government to make us two autonomous communities, but because it is a divine mandate, God gave me 15 villages in Edem Ani to head. God has equipped me with the skills to lead my people. With God and my family members being on my side, I will not disappoint them.
“This is a litmus test for me. Though I worked in Anambra State for 10 years before going to the USA where I have worked as a Nurse for 26 years, because of this responsibility my people have given me today, I will come back to Nigeria and stay with them because of the security concerns we have.
“I also want to interface with the youths because they need some encouragement. If God could help me become somebody from this village, I want to assure them that He can do it to them. I was born, raised and schooled in this village, and if I could make, they will make it too so long as they are upright and honour their parents.
“The youths look frustrating and depressed due to unemployment occasioned by the COVID-19 and lack of basic amenities. I want to show them that they can rise from nothing to something. I am a child of destiny and they love me. I have my challenges but with the support of my people, I have the requisite experience to extend development to other parts of Edem Ani and Nsukka in general. I want to make an impression, that is why they call me ‘Okenwa Ogadagidi.’
“I built a free 20-bed hospital in my community and I pay up to a million naira every month for personnel cost. It is a free hospital with ultrasound x-ray and laboratory. I just replicated what we have at the USA here because I want my people to have the best Medicare, the only thing they buy is drug because I have equally taken care of the bills,” he explained.
Asadu has been aiding the community in its development programs even before the death of their former monarch, according to Barr. Anthony Eze, who spoke after the election as a member of ‘Oha’ Edem Ani, the Governing Council of the village.
“He has given a lot of scholarship to our students, built roads and free hospital for us. He equally assisted indigent people to start up small scale businesses. There is nothing he has not done for us. His emergence as our monarch-elect is a way to pay him back for the good things he continues to do for us,” Barr. Eze said.
The community’s President General, Christian Ugwu, added that the monarch-elect is the best candidate among those who expressed interest in filling the vacant stool of the traditional ruler in his community and that he is reaping the rewards of his goodness and big-heartedness to the people of the community.
Barr. Innocent Asogwa, a member of the electoral committee that selected Chief Asadu as the community’s next monarch, praised the election as democratic and credible.
According to reports Swagenews has learnt that once Chief Asadu met the criteria outlined in the Edem Ani Community Constitution, a 12-man Committee led by Barr. Ndubuisi Ajibo chose him.