“To a brave man, good and bad luck are like his left and right hand. He uses both”.
This quote from St. Catherine of Siena encapsulates the stuff the man Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah is made of. Soft, kind tender hearted with the innocence of a child and the gentility of a dove. Yet, behind these uncommon attributes lies a man green with bravery, boldness, fearlessness and unbridled effontery.
Like the Biblical Sampson, Dr. Uche Sampson Ogah is an exceptionally strong man, a giant difficult to beat. He never needed to bargain. Like Sampson whose greatest weapon was the jawbone of an ass with which he fought many battles and conquered nations, Dr. Ogah’s weapon in his series of battle for the soul of Abia are the people themselves.
Who would have believed that after losing the prolonged battle to reclaim his 2015 mandate, a matter that got to the highest court in the land, Dr. Ogah would still throw his hat in the ring again to lead Abia? Who would have imagined that after losing fortunes of his personal savings, he would still mustered the courage to harken unto the call by his people to lead them? Who would have imagined that after the chains of attack, series of darts hauled at him after his last attempt, he would have given it a thought to take up the number one job in Abia?
As a keen observer of his political trajectory over the years, Dr. Ogah’s victory in the just concluded gubernatorial primary of APC never came to me as a surprise. It could at best be described as the price for a race well ran. This is not in anyway an attempt to downplay the resilience and gallantry of his co-contestants in the race.
Dr. Ogah took the pain of touring round the 17 local governments of the state, meandering through the bad road networks across the state. Dr. Ogah risked his personal security to reach out to places known as dark spots for insecurity, including kidnapping and arm robbery. Dr. Ogah never gave much consideration to his personal health when he leaves home at sunrise, just to return home shortly before the rise of another sun. I have personally witnessed a number of occasions where he will be on the strong hold of nature, still struggles hard to deliver his message across to the people. Who wouldn’t doze off? Who wouldn’t be exhausted after over 19 hours of community to community advocacy?
Dr. Ogah saw opportunity where others saw obstacle. He saw a way where others a barricade. He saw a direction where others saw a barrier. He used the leeway the under development of Abia provided him to preach his gospel. He would have found a potent excuse in the lack of access roads. He would have found a potent excuse in the lack of power supply in the communities. He would have found excuse in the mind boggling insecurity in the state, he would have found excuse in the complexity of Abia backwardness, yet he surmounted all odds, took up the challenge, crossed the deserts and met the people who are the source of his bravery. It wouldn’t be too much to ask if I say let’s clap for this young man.
While it must be clearly stated that this is not an attempt to promote the candidacy of Dr. Ogah, it must be noted that in a society where no one dares to be different, a society where everyone is intimidated by the size of the bull’s horn, where everyone is sitting in the comfort of his home waiting for the nation of our dream to fall from the sky, where everyone is engaged in armchair criticism, where some see obstacle in opportunity, one man has shown the way. One man has shown that it takes a brave heart to effect a visible change in the society, even at the risk of his personal safety, his family, his establishments, his finances and everything that makes him what he is.
God recognizes and rewards hard-work. Hear Him in the book of Colossians 3:23-24 “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. Remember that the Lord will give you an inheritance as your reward, and that the Master you are serving is Christ”. If God can speak so glowingly on the importance of hardwork, who is man not to speak good when he sees one? Even employers of labour recognize hard work with promotion. Recognizing people who have shown gallantry and uncommon zeal spurs them to achieve greater feats.
“All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty . The wealth of the wise is their crown, but the folly of fools yields folly” Proverbs 14:23-24. The profit which Dr. Ogah is currently reaping is not the type that came through brazen cheating and manipulation but through an open and transparent process. It is the kind of profit that earnestly seeks to give the people a reason to live. The kind of profit that seeks to bring hope to the hopeless, relief to the oppressed and succour to the heartbroken.
It is not a profit for self aggrandisement, mindless acquisition of wealth and ostentatious lifestyle. It is not a profit for profiteering and plundering but a profit for the overall development of Abia.
I’m convinced beyond every reasonable doubt that such bravery would be translated into taking our dearly beloved state to a greater height. As a man who brought life into oil and gas business in Nigeria and redefined private sector, there is no iota of doubt that he is sufficiently qualified and fully ready to redefine governance in Abia. The onus behoves on the people of Abia to make a decision come 2019.
As I bring this article to a close please read with me 2 Timothy 4:7-8a “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day. It could be said that Apostle Paul had Dr. Ogah in mind while making this statement. It fully applies to him today. He has fought the fight of bravery. He has shattered the ice. Only Abians have the key to unlock the crown that will change the narrative of our dear state. Who does the crown fit?
Ifeanyi O. writes from Abuja
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