– By Patrick Ochei
Saturday 24th July, 2021, will forever remain indelible in the memory of the visiting Executive students of the Faculty of Arts, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, as the Omu Anioma and Nneoha, HRM Obi Martha Dunkwu has urged them to rediscover themselves, chart a new course for themselves and create a new environment of innovation, purpose and development for themselves.
Omu Dunkwu made this assertion against the background that the older generation of leaders had failed the youths, and unless the youths take the initiative to reposition for a purpose driven leadership that will usher in a new dawn in the South East and Nigeria in general, they may still be marking time in the same environment that the leaders had quartered them.
The highly cerebral culture enthusiast took time to narrate her birth, upbringing and calling into the Omu Institution as the students listened with rapt attention.
Having given them a good dose of how she went to school in England and America and at the end, rather than stay back to work and get the Green Card, she took her bag and returned to Nigeria to create her own environment for the betterment of the Nigerian society.
Omu told the Igbo students to rediscover themselves and start life afresh on a new canvass if they were truly determined to experience change, adding that the Igbos are a people lost midstream.
She affirmed that she had severally advised the Igbos on what to do to regain their lost glory in the Nigerian project rather than seeking an individual or ethnic group to lay blame on.
According to her, “The Igbos are blessed mentally and in strength. They need to apply their natural intelligence rightly by retreating to focus their energy and resources in the development of the South East. Enough of being slavishly industrious.
“The Igbo man must begin to build bridges and negotiate constructively within the Nigerian polity. Nobody can hand over leadership to you if they don’t trust you. You must build your home, speak in one voice and then approach others to reach a compromise and alliance.
“You can’t be a President of Nigeria when the only political party identifiable with the Igbo man – APGA is in tatters, cannot hold the entire South Eastern States and struggling to even hold only Anambra State. So where is the Igboness in you? Your business empires are situated in other places and even population to prosecute an honest election, you don’t have.
“The only people that can possibly salvage the situation are the youths. The youths must be ready to acquire education, become incisive, have broad mind, help each other and be ready to dare beyond the ordinary.
“The truth is light and an antenna; however, the lie has a short life span. I represent the forces of light and so I must tell you nothing less than the truth. When the Igbos crowned me Nneoha (Mother To All and Mother Without Borders) in Enugu State, it was as a result of the confidence reposed in me to speak the truth, especially to our Igbo people at all times.
“I am also a Public Relations Expert who looks at things critically in order to proffer solutions. In PR, we analyse trends, predict their consequences, proffer solutions and implement the solutions.
“The Igbos must begin to educate their young ones. They must educate the woman; I call it training and retraining the trainer. The woman looks at issues holistically and broadly, and must not be treated trivially. The solution we need for proper mentoring, sane society and transparent leadership lies with women to help achieve the breakthrough.
“So education is the universal key that opens all doors. Sarah Jubril, a former presidential candidate said that, ‘Education of the heart is the heart of education’. The Chinese went indoors and locked themselves for over a decade, educating themselves for the future they desired. Today, it’s a new song for China. The education I am advocating is both formal and informal. What we need at this time is no longer reorientation; we need indoctrination. It’s a serious matter my dear, if we must get out of the woods”, Omu Anioma posited.
Meanwhile, earlier after introducing the executive members of the Association of Faculty of Arts Students, Unizik, the President, Mr. Emmanuel Nnamani had appreciated Omu Anioma for opening her Palace to receive them and broaden their horizon on issues of life and leadership.
Nnamani had asked Omu series of questions for the article they are working on to be featured in the Faculty’s magazine, which borders on the life of the Omu as a Queen Mother, her perspective on leadership with special focus on Igbo leadership and the institution of the Omu.
The Predident went further to extend their invitation for her to speak at the Faculty’s Day, adding that there was no other motivational speaker so expected to speak to the students the way that she thrills her audiences.