Former Diplomat Henry Oseloka Obaze has clinched the Anambra State PDP Primaries ticket after defeating Ifeanyi Ubah, Stella Oduah and a host of others.
Here are a few facts about the PDP flagbearer.
1. Obaze is a former United Nations official (1991-2012) and also a former member of the Nigerian Diplomatic Service (1982-1991). A seasoned international civil servant, diplomat, strategic policy advisor and administrator.
Obaze was appointed to the United Nations Secretariat by Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar Javier on 1 March 1991, as a Political Affairs Officer in the Department of Political and Security Council Affairs (PSCA) at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
2. Obaze studied Political Science and International Relations and holds a Master of Arts in Political Science (M.A.) from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE (1980); and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science (B.S.) from Nebraska Wesleyan University, Lincoln, NE (1979). He also holds a Certificate in Diplomacy from the Nigerian Foreign Service Academy, Lagos, Nigeria (1983); Certificate in Peacekeeping and Preventive Diplomacy, from the UNITAR/International Peace Academy Course, Burg Schlaining, Austria (1996); Certificate in Early Warning and Preventive Measures, from the UN System Staff College, Turin, Italy (1999); and a Certificate in Facilitation of Dialogue Processes and Mediation Efforts, from the Folke Bernadotte Academy, Sandon, Sweden (2007).
3. Obaze was a member of the United Nations Interdepartmental and Inter-Agency Task Force that drafted and negotiated the UN-AU Declaration, which was signed in November 2006. He was involved in the conceptualization, drafting and finalizing various strategic policy papers and reports of the Secretary-General to the U.N. General Assembly and the U.N. Security Council.
He has worked on the African and Europeans dossiers and most notably, on Angola, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo and Georgia.
4. Henry Oseloka Obaze is also a supporting Member of the African Writers Endowment (AWE). From 1999 to 2005, he served on the editorial board of INYEAKA, the journal of Songhai Charities, Inc., a New Jersey community-based charity founded and run by Nigerians based in New York Tri-state area in the United States, first as its founding Publisher and later as the Editor-At-Large.
He has been on the editorial board of The Amaka Gazette, the journal of the Christ the King College and Onitsha Alumni Association in America since 1998. He is the founder and pioneer editor of Amaka’s Voice, the quarterly newsletter of the Christ the King College, Onitsha Alumni Association in America. Along with his fellow C.K.C. Onitsha alumni, he was instrumental in the long campaign for the return of C.K.C. Onitsha and other mission schools in Anambra State to their rightful owners and raising over N25 million towards revitalization projects at C.K.C. Onitsha.
5. Obaze did his National Youth Service (NYSC) in Lagos State from August 1981 – July 1982, briefly at the Defence Headquarters, Lagos, before being re-deployed to the Nigerian Institute Army Education, Ilupeju, Lagos where he served as a Research and Publication Officer under the direct supervision of Col. Adedotun Gbadebo, (now, HRM Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, the Alake of Egbaland). Due to his superb NYSC performance, he was recommended to the Military Secretary (Army) for a Direct Short Service Commission (DSSC) into the Nigerian Army. He was selected by the DSSC Board chaired by then Brigadier-General Solomon Omojokun, in Kaduna in February 1982, as one of the top candidates for DSSC Course 10, but opted to pursue diplomacy, his first career choice.
6. Obaze is the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Selonnes Consult Ltd – a management and strategic policy advisory entity and governance advocacy outfit. He assumed duties on June 9th, 2015. Born on 9th April 1955 in Ogidi, Nigeria, he is a native of Ochuche Umuodu, in the Ogbaru LGA of Anambra State.
7. Obaze is married to Dr Ofunne Omo Obaze, a Physician. And, they are blessed with children. The widely travelled man has visited sixty-five (65) countries. He is an avid sportsman and soccer enthusiast who reviews books and arts as a hobby.
8. Henry Oseloka Obaze was the Secretary to the State Government (Anambra State, Nigeria) from 29th June 2012 to 8th June 2015. The ex-governor of the state, Peter Obi appointed him initially as Secretary to the State Government (SSG), in January 2012. He left his United Nations post consequently to join the Anambra State Government on 29 June 2012.
Obaze resigned from his position on 12 August 2013 to contest for the governorship of Anambra State. After he was disqualified by All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) on voters’ card technicality, he was re-appointed to the position by Gov. Peter Obi, on 19 August 2013. Again, after Willie M. Obiano emerged the governor of the state, the man was re-appointed as Secretary to the Anambra State Government on 17 March 2014.