By Nduji Chukwudi Destiny
I may not have known him for ages but the few years I have known Emeka Ihedioha, I came to realize that there are sincere people in Nigerian political space.
2013, was my first time of seeing Ihedioha at the PDP Mega rally at Dan Anyiam stadium, the moment he stood up to speak I saw a man radiating in confidence, I saw a focused man, he spoke and was well articulated in his words. I only watch him on TV during House of Reps plenary session and on Radio during a BBC sponsored program tagged ” Talk your own”.
2014, during the campaigns after winning the PDP primaries, I followed Ihedioha to campaign grounds, I listened to a sound mind, I was elated hearing him speak of the challenges facing Imo State and reeled out practical ways and approach in solving them, I saw a Man who didn’t promise heaven on Earth like some politicians do, he was concise and straight to the point on his plans for a better Imo State.
Election 2015 came and gone, he couldn’t make it, but he didn’t relent, he started making contacts, identifying with the Imo people and telling them all hope was not lost.
I met Ihedioha in his house in Owerri in 2016 during his low key birthday celebration, Even while celebrating his birthday, he never stopped talking about Imo State, practically all his speech was centered on how to develop Imo State, once again I was convinced that the man Ihedioha was who Imo people needed at that trying time.
Fast forward to 2019 general election, of all the candidates that contested for that election, Ihedioha ran the most decent, coordinated, issue based and media friendly campaign, Ihedioha won the hearts of Imo people, Omenkeahuruanya as he is fondly called was on the lips of almost all the electorates, he is so Loved that he won 103 out of 104 electoral wards in Owerri Zone and a larger percent of electoral wards in Okigwe and Orlu Zones. Ihedioha marshalled out his program’s and how best to follow them when elected as governor of Imo State.
Ihedioha was declared winner and immediately he went to work, he assembled the best team in his Transition and Technical Committee, people with impeccable integrity, People who have excelled in different Fields of life, they came together and articulated all the plans Ihedioha had for Imo State into a practical working tool. he didn’t stop there, from the first day he was sworn in as governor Ihedioha started work, which Imo people and Nigerians at large witnessed, he redefined governance in the state which earned him the names “MR DUE PROCESS” and “MR QUALITY PROJECT” which was on the lips of every Imo son and daughter.
For 8 months Imo people witnessed a great departure from what we had in the past, the people of Imo State saw and believed that Government can actually be for the people, they felt it, they witnessed great achievement’s from Good road networks, to educational reforms, the City of Owerri and beyond was wearing a New look, our economy was booming, The Internally generated revenue hit 1billion naira for the first time in our history as a State, there was practically no sector of the economy that didn’t witness massive progress, the local government areas Came back to life, our civil servants and pensioners were happy. EMEKA IHEDIOHA showed Imo people that governance is not rocket science.
He was seen as a threat to the Powers that be, they were afraid that he was being Loved and could alter their political calculations in the future, they had to remove him through every means, that notwithstanding, Ihedioha Left a big shoe which the present occupants are finding very difficult to fit into, when he was at the National Assembly his presence was felt, Ihedioha is arguably the Most Outstanding Deputy Speaker in the history of the House of Representatives of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
No lawmaker living or dead in Imo State has been able to outperform Omenkeahuruanya in terms of legislative duties, oversight functions and constituency project. Ihedioha is a man of few words, he won’t speak unless he is sure of what to say and he is always straight forward, and principled.
Recently, having failed to fill in the gap which he Left in Douglas House Owerri, his successor has resulted to Media blackmail and Propaganda all in a bid to bring him down, but you can’t bring a Shining Star down, Ihedioha is not hiding any skeleton in his cupboard, he served his people for 12yrs in the National Assembly without any dent on his image, he served Imo people with sincerity and openness, there is nothing to hide.
The man Emeka Ihedioha is a man of integrity.