By Chuks Nwokeji (08034082725)
One of the good things about the celebrating World Humanitarian Day is the golden opportunity it gives to celebrate and honour humanitarian aid workers who committed their lives in selfless service to humanity. It has also presented a golden opportunity for the public to honour and celebrate outstanding philanthropists in society. For those who may not know, World Humanitarian Day is a day designated in memory of August 29th 2003 bomb attack on the Canal Hotel in Baghdad Iraq that killed 22 people, including the Chief Humanitarian Officer, Sergio Viera De Mellon. In 2009 United Nations General Assembly formalized the day as World Humanitarian Day and set it aside as a special day to commemorate the humanitarian workers killed in the course of carrying out humanitarian services to mankind. The day also honours aid workers who continued to provide life support services and protection to people in need.
Aside from the priceless opportunities presented by World Humanitarian Day to celebrate Humanitarian Workers, it is impressive to note that the people have seized the opportunity to also celebrate impactful and outstanding philanthropists in society. Some philanthropists have been noticed and celebrated maybe because their activities have political undertone or they have created enough awareness about the activities of their Humanitarian Foundation. While some philanthropists have not been noticed or celebrated maybe for the simple reason that their foundation has no political undertone and they are not ready to blow their trumpet for the world to see.
Activities of some Non-Governmental Organization and their founder have been noticed and celebrated maybe because of the level of media hype it has received, however; there are a lot of impactful, powerful but salient philanthropists in the society doing superlatively well in rendering quality selfless services to the society without blowing their trumpet.
This year 2020 World Humanitarian Day may have come and gone with celebrations and honours for some humanitarian aid workers and philanthropists in the society, but the celebration and record will not be complete without the name of Barrister Pastor Princewill Odikanwa, the founder of Platform of Comfort Ministries, Also Known As Comfort Assembly who has been into humanitarian services for decades without blowing his trumpet. He has been selflessly donating food items to the poorest of the poor so as to save them from torments of hunger. He has also regularly carried out a series of serious empowerment programs for the youths with a view to teach them how to fish instead of giving them fish to eat. He has carried out all these humanitarian gestures and many acts of human kindness to mention before he came into full-time Ministry. To the glory of God, as a minister of the gospel, he has used his ministerial capacity to expand the scope of his humanitarian gestures to all the 27 Local Governments Areas in Imo State and some states in South-East and South-South Geopolitical Zones of the Country.
The empowerment program carried out by his Foundation first week of January every year has been described by observers and analysts as the mother of all empowerment programs in Imo State. From his hard-earned money, he has been dolling out foodstuff to families. He has also made payment of hospital bills and school fees to many families in need. His lifestyle of consistent donation of food and empowerment materials to the poor without blowing his trumpet portrays him as a man who believes in the biblical injunction that says ‘when you are doing good don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing’ For decades this humble, dedicated and obedient servant of the most high God has been consistent and committed to carrying out what could be described as heavily loaded empowerment programs yet to be seen by any cleric or church in Imo State.
How he offloads trucks of food items, ranging from Rice, beans, Garri, Tomatoes, Groundnut oil, Indomie noodles, Salts, Wrappers for women, tubers of yam and others too numerous to mention is better seen than explained. It is impressive to see how beneficiaries are heavily loaded with foodstuffs during the program. Aside from his regular style of donating foodstuff to the poorest of the poor within and outside Imo State, he has also given out cash to foot hospital bills of some people in need as well as carried out some life-transforming empowerment programs for the youths in order to establish them with meaningful skills for the betterment of their lives.
Indeed Pastor Odikanwa belongs to the class of Humanitarians that deserve all the honour, pomp and pageantry that go with World Humanitarian Day of celebration because he is touching human lives in a salient but powerful unique manner. He has contributed immensely to remove a bitter life experience in people’s life and replace it with a better experience. As humanist par excellence, he has given hope to many in a hopeless situation as well as given help to many in a helpless condition.
Awareness is what makes the difference between well-known activities of a humanitarian worker or philanthropist and unknown activities of a humanist. The humanitarian activities of Pastor Odikanwa, may not have been published by many newspapers both local and national, or aired by popular Radio and Television Stations but the truth remains that it has been published and documented in the minds of millions of the beneficiaries and it has remained permanently in their hearts and members of their family. Show me a leader with milk of human kindness, I will show you a leader living in the hearts of many that will not be forgotten by posterity.
According to a popular Christian Maxim ‘by their fruits, we shall know them’ the numerous beneficiaries of good works of Pastor Princewill Odikanwa in humanitarian services are living proofs of his impactful and fruitful services to mankind. Indeed, he is are ideal humanist par excellence, an exemplary leader who will always value people no matter their social class or the low level of their condition, he is ever ready to uplift and help people to succeed.
Timeless observations have shown that the Senior Pastor of Platform of Comfort Ministry Also Known As Comfort Assembly Pastor Barrister Princewill Odikanwa belongs to the class of silent but powerful philanthropists in the society who are dynamically and dramatically touching lives to the glory of God without blowing his trumpet. Indeed, time and season have proved that the heart of this gentle kindhearted cleric is flowing with the milk of human kindness. Without mincing words; he has written his name in gold in the hearts of many through his acts of human kindness, posterity will always remember him for those he put smiles on their faces when poverty, lack and want were tormenting them, posterity will always remember him for those helpless and jobless youths he discovered their talents and helped them to develop it. As an exemplary leader who is saliently impacting lives in humanitarian services, you are one of the reasons World Humanitarian day should be celebrated, keep on with your lifestyle of silent but powerful impacts, it worthy of emulation and commendation.
Chuks Nwokeji is the Coordinator Imo Media Observers Forum, IMOF