By Eze Amaeshi
Shortly after the Supreme Court had settled all matters relating to the Imo State governorship election of 2019, the state governor, Senator Hope Uzodimma promptly announced to Imolites that his administration’s, policy trust would be based on rehabilitation, recovery and reconstruction of the state. This was in recognition of the fact that so much of the active life of the state had gone comatose or even dead. It was also a recognition of the fact that the life blood of the state and the vital organs had ceased to function, leading to the present situation of confusion, abject poverty in the land, social vices, poor health of the people, massive army of unemployed and underemployed youths, etc. The 3R policy trust also means a conscious programme of re-building our values system without which nothing tangible would be achieved. Though the present administration of Governor Hope Uzodimma is already making progress in many sectors of the life of the state, the most profound of all is the achievement being made in the promotion of the health of Imolites which is being championed through the consumer protection council, Imo State Chapter and has the potentials of increasing the life span of people. It was never like this in the state since the consumer protection council started operations. However, everything rises and falls on leadership. We cannot be doing the same thing all the time but expecting a different result. This probably led Governor Uzodimma to appoint Mrs. Obioma Okafor- a tested and tried leader with a distinguished background of excellence in administration. Her main assignment was to recover and rehabilitate the Imo Consumer Protection Council (CPC) and reposition it for its mandate fulfillment. This has been achieved within such a short time.
The recovery, rehabilitation and re-positioning of Imo CPC poses a challenge to all the parastatals in the state and even the country at large. Apart from political sentiments, leadership position should be given to people with both character and capability which are the two components of credibility. If Governor Uzodimma had considered only political sentiments as Mrs. Obioma Okafor has been his long time, dependable political ally, any other person could have been considered for the CPC top position. But he also needed a capable person. Consumer protection Council (CPC) is a parastatal like no other. It is not a place money flows in. it has nothing material to attract anyone to serve as its Director General. All that is there to attract anyone to serve as Director General is an opportunity to save lives. It is an opportunity to stand in the gap for ordinary citizens who live at the mercy of unscrupulous business practitioners driven only by their mundane and insatiable thirst for material things. The position can only be handled by a person like Mrs. Obioma Okafor who saw the spiritual angle of being the helmsman of the CPC. Like the trained teacher and practicing Christian she is, she knew and still knows that her reward for coming to give a voice to the voiceless masses, hope for a better life to the masses who have been treated as insignificant pawns on the stage of life, could only be in heaven. The Director General displayed no fear of any kind, but rather went to work. I believe God has been directing her on every step she has taken so far, otherwise the result delivery seen today could not have been possible.
Like a soul winner, the CPC Acting Director General has been winning over different categories of producers and service providers to her cause of saving lives of Imo residents. She has gotten the pledges of several associations and groups to do the right thing and ensure their members abide by the ethics as provided by law. Mrs. Okafor has also warned them that if necessary, she would wield the big stick against any erring producers of goods and service providers. She has promised them it would never be business as usual, hence the need for all stakeholders to sit up and do the right thing.
In all these, Imolites are the winners! With the process of eliminating all fake, expired and adulterated products from the streets and shops of the state still on going, there is hope that soon all diseases and health challenges that have their roots in these bad products, will become things of the past. All the loss of money due to unscrupulous service providers will be over. And these have multiplier effects! The real income of Imolites will increase as money spent on drugs and hospitals will now be channeled into other productive ventures, improving living and feeding and higher quality education for the children. The loss of money to unscrupulous service providers will also end and the recovered cash channeled into more productive ventures. What more? A healthier society means a more productive society and a happier one too.
Governor Uzodimma should seek out more technocrats, leaders and godly people and put them in positions of services to the people. Leaders like Mrs. Obioma Okafor see every appointment or position in life as a divine calling to render selfless service to the benefit of the society at large. God will always reward labourers in his vineyard.