In his second inaugural address to the American nation, Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States of America declared, “With malice towards none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in”.
This statesmanship declaration by this onetime American President underscores the fact that only he who strives his best for the best i.e. to finish the good work which the God Almighty has ordained him with at any point in time is definitely good enough for a higher responsibility. Logically therefore, the best in any circumstance should be the first.
The question now is: in a crowd of Czars, who should be regarded as a high-quality leader: the man, in the abundance of resources, who provides very little or he, who despite some limitations makes underling impact for prosperity?
Indeed, Abraham Lincoln’s declaration aptly summaries Austin Okwudiri Akobundu’s perspective of life. This candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for Abia Central Senatorial District in 2023 poll has over time shown the light for others to thread on with charity for all and malice to none.
He has committed himself to the firmness of the right course, not only for Ikwuano people, but Abians in general. That ultimately makes him to fit into the saddle as the right material for the Red Chamber i.e. the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
His modest achievements, despite the fact that he has not held any governmental position that lasted more three months, speak volumes. In fact, Col Austin Akobundu rtd was only a minister for two months and nine days under the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan. That little opportunity became the key for more service to the people of Ikwuano and others who sumptuously enjoyed the salubrious green card which today served as an unbeaten scorecard.
As Minister of State Defence, Col Austin Akobundu rtd, the Dike Ako N’Mba of Ikwuano, the Ochiagha Ukwu of Ngodo Umunwanwa, Umuahia South provided jobs to many Ikwuano indigenes as well as other citizens of Abia State in federal and states ministries including parastatals. As a minister in the Ministry of Defence, Akobundu facilitated the enlisting of many Ikwuano indigenes and other Abians into the Nigerian military. Today, many of them are officers pursuing their careers as military men and women with the gladness of heart.
As a top official of the PDP at various levels, this PDP candidate showcased a productive and transparent leadership that made Ikwuano people proud. They felt the impact of the party in and outside Abia State as many of them benefited from the PDP’s national assignments outside Abia State. He did not lose sight of the fact that Ikwuano is a microcosm of Abia Central and indeed Abia State, and therefore carried the extension of benevolence to his party men and women in the entire state without discrimination. Actually, as a patriot, he navigated beyond the concept of “Ikwuano First” and anchored on “Abia Central and then Abia State First”.
God willing, in the proposed arrangement, Ikwuano will be the chief beneficiary because their son will, for the first in the history of the LGA, be representing the entire Ikwuano-Umuahia section as well as Umunneato Ngwa axis of Abia State officially designated Abia Central Senatorial District in the Nigerian Parliament unlike the much cited incident in the sixties when one numinous Ukatta from Oloko, Ikwuano reportedly represented the Bende Division in the then Eastern House of Assembly. I will return to this on a later date.
Though, he is an unrepentant lover of his Ikwuano people, Akobundu is a man who cannot be swayed by some primordial convergence. Suffice it to say however that his interest in bringing the best to his people Ikwuano is always on the top agenda.
Then juxtapose it to a situation where one man (locum tenentes) gets some monstrous allotment for Ikwuano people but offers them some miserable mites which are never enough to douse the yearning desires of this famous food producing and greenish land.
Ikwuano Peoples Forum
Uche Nwosu is a two time Shell Petroleum PLC award winner in the year 2000;
He won the Shell Award on Investigative Journalism and Environmental Cleanliness.