Eze John Nwosu is the traditional ruler of Isiokwu , Ihioma network in the Orlu neighborhood authorities vicinity of Imo state, and a former Resident Electoral Commissioner. He tells about his career
Nigeria ’ s electoral device has been a motive for difficulty to many Nigerians . What would you are saying are the fundamental issues ?
The troubles include illiteracy , clannishness, tribalism, lack of patriotism , pursuit of lucre , the excessive economic weight of political office , abuse of the voter registration workout and vote casting by means of underage youngsters . Our electoral gadget is also challenged by means of dishonesty with the aid of most players , compilation of fictitious names of citizens , unlawful printing of voter cards and end result sheets, the display of and use of risky guns and bribery of party retailers . Humans should be honest in each experience from the leaders to the led .
Had been you involved in partisan politics earlier than you became a traditional ruler , thinking about that you have held exclusive positions as a public officer ?
I did not grow to be a politician. The political positions I held have been appointive by way of purpose of my schooling and exposure . Manner lower back in 1963 , on the college of Ibadan, I ran for the post of students’ Union Secretary after the tenure of Mr Jim Nwobodo ( a former Governor of old Anambra country) and misplaced . But Kuti hall of residence at UI back me because the first member of the hall in the students ’ parliament. I took up appointments in the schooling zone after the warfare , first on secondment to Benue and Plateau states as an education officer and later to Kano kingdom because the main of Bagauda government Secondary college. I also served because the main of Gaya authorities Secondary faculty, Kano . I was the only Igbo guy to be so appointed . Those gave me political exposure .
When i was de- seconded to Imo nation in the early 80 ’s , i was once more appointed secretary of the training board, all politically laced . I labored with politicians . I attended personnel university of Nigeria for a postgraduate diploma in public administration. I earned the first-rate all- round pupil award in direction four of that most important institute . Upon my go back to Imo , i used to be appointed chairman and administrator of old Orlu Municipal , underneath the government of standard Ibrahim Babangida ( retd. ) . At that point , technocrats of the rank of permanent secretaries or deputy permanent secretaries or their equivalent had been selected to steer neighborhood governments , preparatory to the return to civilian authorities . We blended administrative obligations with political headship of neighborhood or municipal governments. In different phrases, the position encapsulated each political and administrative features . That was my first complete publicity to political obligations and maneuverings . At the end of that tenure , the governors appointed me sole administrator of nearby governments, after which i was recommended to go back to my career service or opt for politics . I preferred to remain inside the carrier till I reached retirement age in 1999.
What did you do after your retirement?
Upon retirement, i was appointed as a civil carrier commissioner for Imo nation, representing Orlu quarter . I was still a commissioner while the authorities of Imo kingdom, below leader Achike Udenwa , nominated me and i used to be appointed as a federal resident electoral commissioner – first , for Anambra country and sooner or later for Ekiti, Delta and Osun states . What's extraordinary approximately my career , as a resident electoral commissioner , is that none of my election outcomes was ever contested in court docket and i left all my responsibility positions without any dent or hazard to my private protection . In fact, I acquired the NANs Election remark Award as pleasant Resident Electoral Commissioner within the South. So , my political participation is , via cause of appointment , training and publicity, not to political party club.
How old are you presently ?
I am eighty one years of age .
How did you already know your age ?
I used to be extraordinarily a lucky man or woman . At birth, i used to be taken to a Catholic medical institution at Emekuku, near Owerri. It was founded in 1937, where i was baptised. It was the missionaries that unfolded the Catholic Holy Rosary clinic , Emekuku. Attributable to the reality that my dad and mom lost the kid earlier than me , my father did now not want to take probabilities . This become why he availed himself of the contemporary scientific facilities to be had at the missionary clinic at the instance of someone named chief Paul Obioha from my village, who become then a dispenser inside the native authority management.
What form of youth did you have got?
I had a happy formative years , however a rural one. My father became basically a farmer and a petty provider in wood . That gave him a few enlightenment and he become very determined about contemporary matters. That accounted for why he insisted on my receiving Western training at all fee . I used to be privileged because it become not all people within the village at that time that had that type of disposition. He became very hurt that he couldn't signal his call any time he attended the Ihioma city Union meeting , wherein he represented my village .
You witnessed the Civil war . What do you consider approximately the enjoy?
I remember a lot . The Biafran warfare broke out exactly years once I left the university of Ibadan . I watched all the tendencies earlier than , at some stage in and after the conflict. It changed into an revel in i might no longer want for my enemy . This turned into as it very well fragmented my world imaginative and prescient and career expectation. I saw the suffering and that i worked with overseas and local volunteers and have become the director of a refugee centre and , in a while, Director of Caritas global alleviation and meals Distribution Centre then on the heart of Biafra , at Ihioma .
Did you combat throughout the battle ?
I did now not fight as a gun- carrying player. As I stated , I had just left the college and i used to be located to be more beneficial in other areas of the struggle apart from carrying a gun . I was a member of leaders of notion, stakeholders ’ meetings, and provincial caucuses , because of my exposure as an early graduate inside the vintage Orlu department .
When you look lower back, these days , what was the maximum painful part of the struggle ?
The most painful part of the war turned into the pals and former colleagues shooting to kill each other and, on occasion , changing banter at the war front as colleagues and pals . I was in consistent touch for the duration of the battle with a bosom pal, Prof Peter Bodunrin, who later have become the primary chancellor of Ekiti kingdom university, recruited from the university of Ibadan, where he become the deputy vice chancellor .
You have been a instructor. Turned into it your desire to emerge as one?
I became a teacher because, as quickly as I passed general Six and located second, i was automatically appointed a scholar teacher, a missionary praise for being bright at Akata in gift - day Oru East local authorities area of Imo kingdom. It's far vital to word that i used to be only thirteen . The Marist Brothers noticed me and shared all of us ’s notion that i was not reduce out for teaching , that i was teaching pupils older than myself. The next year , encouraged through such fantastic minds as the past due Sir Paulinus Odidika, ( Iduu Ikemba I of Ihiala ) , who stated I need to no longer tread the difficult route to training which he trod , and sponsored by using an uncle, the late chief Laz Obioha ( a former conventional prime minister of Ihioma) , then an training assistant in Orlu county council , I took an entrance exam into the Christ the King college , Onitsha, and Bishop Shanahan university , Orlu . I used to be admitted to each establishments . My father preferred me to visit BSC, Orlu , at the instance of the overdue Prof F.C . Obioha . That changed my career imaginative and prescient . But upon graduation with a degree in English, secondary colleges had been desperately in want of English Language instructors and the only secondary faculties in Ihioma had no Nigerian graduate teacher . The then Catholic Bishop of Owerri, Bishop J . B. Whelan , who was working with community leaders , advised me to simply accept a expert coaching appointment as an English Language instructor.
How did you become a traditional ruler ?
Of all matters, I in no way dreamt of being a traditional ruler. I have served my network because the president- fashionable through an electoral system . However , while independent communities have been being reviewed , i used to be in far flung Asaba , Delta country, whilst a delegation of my network human beings , comprising all sun shades of opinion and persuasion , came to inform me that i used to be going to be their conventional ruler . I protested stoutly but they instructed me that if the community fell into chaos , that i'd take responsibility . I promised all types of guide to whoever become elected because I looked ahead to a quiet retirement . They instructed me they might do their exceptional . They finally returned two weeks later to tell me that 97 in keeping with cent of the electors voted for me in absentia and others withdrew after they heard my name . The simplest person who did not withdraw voted for himself . My circle of relatives resisted it, knowing the risks of the workplace . My spouse , children and instantaneous own family have been uncomfortable, but have had to take delivery of the network wish . However the relaxation of the network confident them of their overall aid and that they had been actual to their phrases. The throne has not been challenged or harassed .
What have the challenges of being a traditional ruler been ?
There are numerous . I have not been capable of meet all the desires of every member or organization inside the network . Feuding businesses are not without difficulty persuaded to accept judgments made towards them . Acquisition of land for network improvement has now not been clean at all. We've got had to increase money to buy land for community initiatives. Hopes of short development get dim by the day and expectations maintain rising via the day too . In contrast to while i was unfastened to specific my views, i can not deliver my opinion on problems inside the nation as one is fast reminded to discuss the same with the governor first . Traveling abroad has grow to be rare. Several possibilities for private improvement are lost .
Do you suspect you will were fulfilled if you had no longer come to be a traditional ruler ?
Truly, before becoming a traditional ruler, I had reached the apex of my calling in life and there was nothing extra left to attain than to help others improve themselves , that's the opportunity the stool gives me .
Reviews of lack of confidence and kidnapping were at the growth. How scared are you about being a target for kidnappers as many conventional rulers had been abducted within the usa?
He that is down fears no fall . I haven't any purpose to worry . I am now not a wealthy man and i am now not struggling for any public workplace . In reality, I don't have any kidnap fee. So , the worry of being abducted has by no means crossed my thoughts
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