Enugu State governor, Sullivan Chime, on Sunday admitted that he stepped on many toes in the course of his eight-year stay in office. Every serious government must step on many toes, according to the governor.
Chime, who spoke at a valedictory thanksgiving mass at the Holy Ghost Cathedral, Enugu, however explained that he stepped on the concerned toes in order to succeed in his quest to transform the state.
He said he was satisfied that the people of the state appreciated what he described as the positive changes his administration brought to their lives.
Chime equally apologised to those he said he may have wrongly hurt “in pursuit of the greater good of the people.”
He noted that none of the policies or actions of his administration was deliberately designed to victimise anyone.
The governor said, “We cannot change the society without stepping on toes, every serious government must take necessary measures to correct the wrongs in the society, if not we will not have the new environment we are enjoying in Enugu today.
“So, I beg for forgiveness and understanding from those on whose toes we must have stepped on.
“They must understand that we did whatever we did for the benefit of all.”
Chime described as an act of God, the emergence of a member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, as his succesor.
According to him, the people of the state had prayed for a “worthy replacement” for himself.
But he also called for “intense prayers for the new administration,” stressing that while the peoples’ expectations were high, the steadily dwindling allocations from the Federal Government would make things difficult for the incoming government.
“Our resources are going down on a daily basis, so many states are unable to pay salaries because of dwindling federal allocations.
“So let us pray that we get it right at the centre so that it will trickle down to the states,” he said.
But, despite the challenges posed by the dwindling allocations from the federation account, Chime expressed confidence that Ugwuanyi would do better than he had done.
He, therefore, urged the people to continue to pray for Ugwuanyi and the state, in the face of the emerging challenges.
Thanking God, the people of Enugu State and the Church for the opportunity given to him to serve, and for their prayers and support, Chime said his greatest achievements lay “in not having disappointed the people.”
Earlier in his homily at the mass, which had Ugwuanyi and his deputy, Hon. Cecilia Ezeilo, in attendance, the Vicar-General of the Enugu Catholic Diocese, Monsignor Obiora Ike, said Chime “fulfilled his promises to the people of Enugu State.”
The cleric noted that Chime succeeded in restoring the “beauty, tranquility and civility” for which Enugu was previously known.
“It is common knowledge that the state receives about the least allocation from the Federal Government, but today we are bearing testimony to the good works that has been done with so little,” the priest said.