Do they really know Anambra’s Soludo?
IF CELEBRATIONS are not marked within given moulds of guage such as lengths of time, dates, periods and frames of comparison, the cause of drumbeats and merriment may not be well understood.
A development without known standard of assessment cannot be well appraised. In the maxim of the great Greek philosopher, Socrates, “an unexamined life is not worth living.”
Therefore, pausing periodically, to take deep count of how things have been is apt as the Igbo would say, “agadi nwanyi daa nda ada n’abo, o guo ihe o bu n’ukpa onu”. Pausing to take occasional count of how far we have fared in our journeys in life surely aids us to go ahead, stronger and more focused.
As today marks the completion of the first quarter of the initial four-year stewardship of Prof. Chukwuma Charles Soludo as the governor of Anambra State, history deserves a clear establishment of the many landmarks the last 364 days have recorded. If there cannot be a headcount of tens of thousands of beneficiaries of his large heart, from the thousands of teachers employed to the hundreds of health workers who got jobs to several millions of people in rural areas whose lives and economic activities are deeply touched by the hundreds of top-quality roads currently under construction by Prof Soludo, there can be an introspection into the radical values adjustment his positively disruptive approach to governance has brought, at least, in government.
As Soludo’s ‘Solution is Here’ political mission in Government House, Awka, marks one year, one deems it not just enough to drop a ‘congratulation’ or the often bandied ‘happy anniversary’ message. There is a need to ponder his mission, in its conceptual appeal.
In the last one year, the man we have in Government House, Agu Awka, has worked not only like a workaholic but like a man on a ‘no retreat, no surrender’ mission with eyes firmly focused on the target.
Within the period, we have seen a man whose priorities are more on the common folks in rural areas — their roads, their hospitals, their schools, markets and farms. Quite unlike a globally trained bureaucrat, scholar and politician, he is more at home with local dimension of things and homemade things in their natural properties.
Beyond tastes and style, he comes across like the guy next door who says things the way they appear to him. He comes in a brutally frank manner and connects directly to anyone who loves truth, at least, the way the governor sees the matter, a trait never ascribed to typical politicians. Before you end your session of pondering the essence of such a harm-inflicting style, he tells you: “Yes, I am a politician but I want to go to heaven.”
With such a disarming honesty even the most discomforted give him his space.
Quite as Gov. Soludo brings an unconventional style of politics to the Government House, he brings a manifest revolution which is vivid in his technical operations in the office. He craves a slim government notwithstanding the challenge of running such an inelaborate organogram in Anambra.
Despite his robust academic background, he favours simple and functional ideas, plainly communicated not fantastic mumbo-jumbo.
Hence, to some, Soludo is a poser yet-to-be-cracked. To others, he is an enigma. But there is an increasing clan of people who have come to understand him as a jolly good fellow with swag, who just wants things to be done the apt way, and would not shy away from showing the defaulter how to do it the preferred way if need be.
He is a hands-on leader who enjoys field experience unlike the armchair leader. In fact, you enjoy him most when you encounter him at site, whether indoor or outdoor. Listening to his repertoire of jokes and wisecracks would crack your ribs even if you are on the receiving end of his reprimand which his heavy baritone makes come out stronger.
Endowed with natural strength which his keenness for physical fitness aides, his desire to work harder than everyone around him and not to be found wanting in his duty makes his government’s ‘Solution is Here’ working theme, a clarion, quasar and a quiver of sort, for arrows to attack every challenge his ever increasing Anambra assignment poses on him. He seems to have been formed to really solve most of Anambra’s current problems, if only, adversaries would let the people pay enough attention. Hence the worry that many are daily being distracted from paying attention to his solutions, the style and what the benefits of the initiatives would be.
One wonders: do the people know what the Soludo solutions would yield? Do they really take good look at his style and ponder their permeating imports?
Like a philosopher king, Soludo may not be conventional. His may not even be convenient to many amid the current distortions and discombobulation of partisan politics (during elections) but as he marks his first year in office, nobody can deny him a well deserved celebration.
Productivity, unprecedented hard work, focused vision on the real problems of ndi Anambra and down-to-earth leadership are planks of my appreciation of him. Though he has not shown traits of camera generosity, I see his passion for the helpless and down-under ones, particularly, those of them who are skilled or intelligent in the merit-based employments.
I proudly say: ‘Congratulations Mr. Governor’ because I have seen a man of high vision, dogged persistence on task and ‘heaven-headed’ politics.