I came across this subject headline in a newspaper publication and found it worthy to adopt as I attempt to exray the leadership qualities of the governor of Enugu state, His Excellency, Dr. Lawrence Ifeanyichukwu Ugwuanyi (Gburu-Gburu).

His Excellency, Dr. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi ascended the throne as the head of government of Enugu state of Nigeria in May 29th 2015. Five years down the line and in his second and final tenure as Governor, one cannot but admire the leadership skills and fineese with which he has brought governance to a level of an art unmatched in recent time. As a student of political history, I recall the mantra which formed the campaign thrust of the penultimate Governor in western part of Nigeria and I quote “The power we seek is the power to do good”. Double speak or speaking from both sides of the mouth is often attributed to politicians and political gladiators in order to hoodwink their fans and the electorate. But not with Gburu-Gburu. He is refreshingly honest, down to earth and trust worthy. A trait truly lacking with contemporary politicians.
Gburu-Gburu seem to be walking the old philosophical saying…
“I shall pass this way but once; any good, therefore that I can do or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again”.

“Education” opined Dr John G. Hibben a former president of the Princeton University “is the ability to meet life’s situations.” Governance equally could be situated in same manner for government exists to meet people’s expectations and solve challenges associated with their well-being. It is important to stress that people in government are often the representatives of the community. More often, they feel and behave as if they are doing the people they are meant to govern a favour especially when they dispense with the resources meant for the general good. Misapplication of common wealth becomes their past time. This trait is commonly found among politicians lacking in the fear of God. But not with the Gburu-Gburu of Enugu state.

What’s more? the scholarly Herbert Spencer acknowledged that” the great aim of education is not knowledge but action. Again politics is not just rhetoric but action. Politicians should realise this. Governor Ugwuanyi it must be pointed out realized this important stake with the people and have never shied away from matching action and not just spewing mere rhetoric associated with political intrigues.

In the area of Human Relations, Gburu-Gburu could said to have gotten some tutorials on the true essence of leadership from the famous Viennese psychologist who wrote the book entitled WHAT LIFE SHOULD MEAN TO YOU. And I qoute
“It is the individual who is not interested in his fellow men who has the greatest difficulties in life and provides the greatest injury to others. It is from among such individuals that all human failures spring” .

The ancient Chinese adage has a lot of lessons for humanity too… Ever thought of what a smiling face can do to you or me?
The adage was emphatic… “A man without a smiling face must not open a shop” . As Ugwuanyi sits on the saddle of government of Enugu state, his signature smile endears him and still do to many fans of his. It was a sincere smile that has characterized the peace and harmony which pervades the land of the coal city. Enugu state is unarguably one of the states in Nigeria where political leadership squabbles is non existent between politicians at the federal level and the home based. He treats every politician with equal respect and honor irrespective of political leaning or ideology. He actually believes that everyone is an equal stakeholder in the upliftment and development of the coal city state.

It is the realization of this laudable quality that Senator Chimaroke Nnamani “invaded” the Enugu government House recently with hordes of his erstwhile political family (Ebeano) and declared Governor Ugwuanyi as the new leader worthy of everyone’s support. He thereafter in a manner rich in humility declared that he and the entire political family is ready to support whoever Governor Ugwuanyi decides to field as the next Governor and by extention all the political representatives of the state come 2023. What more confirmation does one need to understand that Gburu-Gburu is truly a man of the people?

As we continue to thank God for gifting the state with the ever cheerful Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, we pray to God to continue to direct his steps and thoughts. May God also gift us with another selfless leader as we march towards the next political dispensation.

Truly Enugu state is in the hands of God!

Okechukwu Chijioke

A Public Relations Practitioner

A member of Enugu di n’aka Chukwu movement

writes from Abuja.


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