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Hon. Barr. Timothy M.O.N. Odaah

Hon. Barr. Timothy Odaah Commissioner for Finance & Economic Development

Hon. Barr. Timothy Odaah
Commissioner for Finance & Economic Development

Hon. Barr. Timothy Marvelous Ogbonnaya Nwali Odaah (JP) was born on 12th August 1965 to the family of Chief Odaah Eze at Ebiriogu Okuzzu Egugwu village in Ukawu Autonomous Community, Ukaba Development Center, Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State Nigeria. Just as the parents and well wishes savored the arrival of the new bouncing baby boy, little Tim clutched his fingers, with eyes firmly shot, oblivious of the preponderance of joy enveloping his mundane abode. His father, Late Chief Odaah Eze was a renowned farmer of high repute with many titles to his coffer.

To show he had actually arrived, young Tim enrolled at Amamkpuma Central School where he graduated with flying colors in the First School Leaving Certificate Examination (FSLC) in 1975.

An old boy of the most revered Government College Afikpo, Tim had one of the best results in WASC in the year 1980 among his classmates where he could have passed out in less than five years had he been allowed to do so.

Even at a tender age, young Nwali, as his mother called him, did find pleasure in coming to the aid of the weak and less privileged and, therefore, his dreams had always been how to impact positively on the lives of people.

In search of a white collar job, young Nwali went to Lagos, where he worked at the Murtala Mohamed International Airport Lagos, a job he later relinquished and was immediately employed by Nigeria Industrial Development Bank Lagos, where he kept alive the burning desire of acquiring a higher qualification in academics.

A brilliant, industrious, pragmatic, dedicated, energetic, visionary, versatile, extraordinary, innovative and vibrant Tim took JAMB and was eventually offered admission to study medicine and surgery in the prestigious University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN).

His unquenchable love for rule of law, orderliness, due process, equity and fairness moved him to change the course originally offered him to study law after spending a full academic year as a medical student in the same university.

During his university days, he served as the mouth-piece of the students as he was the Speaker, Students’ Parliament, University of Nigeria.

During this period, the students had a lot of positive changes, and the lecturers alike equally enjoyed his tenure. His achievements during this period are too numerous. These enviable achievements later pushed him to the next level as he was later unanimously elected President Students Union Government of the same University.

He graduated as a lawyer in the year 1996 and was subsequently called to Bar in the year 1996.

He did his compulsory National Youths Service at Abuja where he served as the Chairman, Corpers Welfare Association Abuja Branch during his Youth Corps Service, 1996-1997.

He has practiced as a lawyer at Abuja and Lagos, where he handled and won many cases. He has equally served as the Legal Adviser to Nigeria industrial Development Bank Lagos, a position from which he resigned as a result of his zeal to come and serve his people.

On coming to Ebonyi State, he joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and later contested for House of Assembly, Onicha East Constituency, and lost narrowly to his kinsman, Hon. Patrick Edediugwu (JP) in 1998. He was subsequently elected the State Financial Secretary of Peoples Democratic Party.

As an astute administrator, he mobilized his people for the creation of then Ukaba Local Government Area during the tenure of Governor, Dr. Sam Ominyi Egwu. Hon. Barr. Odaah headed the Creation Team and the dream eventually came true. He was subsequently appointed the Ag Chairman Ukaba Local Government Area in the year 2000. He contested for the chairmanship of the same Local Government in 2003 and was overwhelmingly voted in.

During his tenure, he touched the lives of Ukaba people, both old and young, as no one passes him without receiving a blessing. During this period, he elevated the new ward chairman of Peoples Democratic Party in Ukaba to be part of the stakeholders of the Local Government, an action some politicians kicked against vehemently. The opposition from these politicians served as a catalyst in doing more good to the down-trodden as he went further and procured more than fifty (50) motorcycles or motorbikes and distributed same to the ward chairmen and some youths as a poverty eradication programme. Some Local Government chairmen eventually emulated him. His magnanimity cut across the three communities that make up Ukaba, namely Ukawu, Abaomege and Ishinkwo.

He did not segregate in delivering the dividend of democracy to the grassroots. This was made obvious in the drilling of bore holes in the villages, construction of culverts and bridges, repair of dilapidated primary and secondary schools, road maintenance, etc.

During the conversion of newly created Local Governments to Development Centers, he was also called upon by Aka dike Ndigbo, Dr. Sam O. Egwu (PH.D), to continue his good and noble work in rural development.

The Development Centre Headquarters, Equezeafor, was given a face lift. All the buildings presently available at the Development Centre Headquarters were all built and furnished during the time Chief. Hon. Barr. Odaah was in power as the Chairman. Suffice it to say, the structures in the Development Centre Headquarters are far bigger and better than those of her counterparts in other areas, including those of some old Local Governments.

He was doing the good work in the villages that make up Ukaba and was also aspiring to be the next chairman of the same Development Centre when on August 1, 2007, he was called upon by the Government of Ochudo Nigeria, Chief Martin Nwancho Elechi (MFR), to be one of the members of Ebonyi State Executive Council, where he is currently serving as the Hon. Commissioner for Culture and Tourism. This has made him to be the first Ukawu son to be appointed into the State Executive Council since the world began. The gross marginalization suffered by Ukawu people right from Imo State to Abia State despite their big land mass and thick population expired immediately when this erudite scholar came into politics in Ebonyi State. The community that was once neglected and trampled upon is now the talk of the moment.

His candid complaint to the former Executive Governor of Ebonyi State, Dr. Sam Egwu, on how the Ukawu people were divided into two by Ebonyi River brought about the gracious approval by His Excellency for the construction of a bridge over the said river. The contract was awarded as far back as 2004 to Jukok Construction Company. Though the contractor handling the project is working at a snail’s pace, Ukawu people are happy that they are recognized, and if the work is completed, it will save the Ukawu, Ugwulangwu, Okposi, Uburu people and others the rigorous and strenuous journey involved when they travel from the State Capital Abakaliki to join their kits and kins in their respective villages.

During his tenure as the Honorable Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, he unleashed his vigor on how to place the Ministry into the limelight. Through the support of the Executive Governor, he acquired a gigantic and luxurious office complex along Enugu-Abakaliki Expressway Abakaliki. The office properties of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, including chairs and tables which were gutted by fire in 1995, were completely replaced by Barr. Tim Odaah through the gracious approval by his Excellency, the Governor, Chief Martin Nwancho Elechi (MFR). The Ministry became second to none in terms of refurbishment, orderliness and dedication to duty.

His first outing as the Hon. Commissioner with the Ministry for NAFEST at Makurdi Benue State saw the Ministry bringing to the State a golden gong, a price they won because of their excellent performance at the festival.

Since the creation of the State, Ebonyi had never hosted the state nor had it hosted other states in matters relating to culture and tourism. But barely a month after his assumption of office, Chief Odaah, with the support of the State Government, successfully hosted the five states that make up the southeast on World Tourism Day. This great event was held at the Township Stadium Abakaliki and attracted dignitaries and stakeholders in the Tourism Industry from far and near.

His outing again with Ministry to Abuja Cultural Carnival also saw him and the Ministry bringing laurels to Ebonyi State, since the beginning of the festival has never brought even a pin to the state; but this time, she took the overall third position in a contest that involved the thirty-six states of the Federation and Abuja, as well as five other countries that participated in the festival.

Hon. Chief Barrister Odaah was appointed the Commissioner for Finance and Economic Development in November 2009.

One may pause to ask, “Who is this great achiever and where does he derive his power and strength?”

Well, this is a man that grew up with humble beginnings. He anchors all his projects and prospects in God.

This is the man whose success comes from God Almighty. No day goes by without him humbly subjecting himself to God and asking for God’s divine directives in all his endeavors.

This is the man that so much loves his work. He is always dogged, resilient and courageous, and most importantly, he is always confident. He believes that work well-done lifts you to a greater height.

Presently, he is the first that comes to work daily in the office and the last to leave the office. He is full of wisdom and he is always handy to proffer solution to most problems. A very simple man, who has left many people in doubt if actually he is the one that have been performing these noble tasks.

He is happily married to Hon. Mrs. Augustina Odaah, a woman whom he reveres much as an epitome and embodiment of womanhood. A beautiful queen from Imo State, she has given birth to three lovely, promising, intelligent and vibrant children, namely, Toochukwu Steady Williams Odaah, Kelechukwu Odaah and Adanna, the one after the dad’s heart.

Due Respect, as he is popularly known, loves music so much. He takes pleasure in arguing issues with friends, as that may be one of the ways he uses in finding out what should be done to keep people happy and also to solve people’s problems.

A member of Catholic Men Organization and also a respected member of the Nigerian Bar Association, he built a gigantic church and donated same to his village, Ebiriogu Okuzzu II Ukawu. The name of the church is St. Gabriel’s Catholic Church Ebiriogu Okuzzu Ukawu in Stella Mars Parish.

He indirectly avoids receiving awards, but that notwithstanding, many have come his way. Examples are the Award of Excellency from Rotary Club District Abakaliki, Award from Student Union Government of Ebonyi State University, Award from RATTAWU Ebonyi State, to mention but a few.

He has received many traditional titles from within and outside his community and from reputable traditional rulers. An example is Agu Oha I of Ukawu Autonomous Community, to mention but a few.

He is presently living in Abakaliki, from where he is discharging his duties honorably, diligently, courageously, impartially, pragmatically and religiously to the glory of God and service to humans.

An open-minded administrator with listening ears any time, anywhere, one can easily reach him through the following GSM numbers: 08035804828 or 08052572663; email: timodaah@yahoo.com.

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