PRESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan has tasked political office holders to be paying greater attention to leading a public service that would earn the people’s support and honour beyond their tenure in office just as Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers state shocked his political opponents as he was at the airport Thursday to receive the President who was in the state for the funeral of his foster mother inlaw, late Madam Charity Oba.
Before the President arrived Port Harcourt that Thursday, speculations were rife in several circles that Governor Amaechi would not be around to receive him. His opponents were apparently shocked when they saw him at the airport among others to welcome President Goodluck Jonathan .
Before the President arrived Port Harcourt that Thursday, speculations were that the governor was not going to be part of the funeral programme and he might not also be at the airport to receive the President.
Their conviction was further strengthened by the fact that the governor was not even in the state that morning. So, the conclusion was that he deliberately travelled out of the state to avoid being part of the funeral program.
Hundreds of supporters of the Supervising Minister for Education, Mr Nyesom Wike were mobilised to the airport as early as 8am to wait for President Jonathan who also did not attend the service of songs. People were in groups discussing the absence of governor Amaechi in the state when suddenly his plane landed at the airport. And he headed straight to the VIP lounge.
What looked like another shocker was when governor Amaechi, his Bayelsa counterpart, Dickson and President Jonathan boarded the same helicopter to Okrika, hometown of the first lady, Dame Patience Jonathan.
While remarking on the life and times of the Late Madam Oba, President Jonathan likened political officeholders exit from office to physical death, adding that the way the people judge a departed soul is the same way they judge a man who has vacated public office in reflection of his deeds while alive or while in office. Jonathan maintained: “We all must die one day.
So, we should do all we can do to contribute to the good and happiness of mankind. We are here to celebrate my mother-in-law today because she stood for my wife and today, my wife is a product of the good deeds of Charity Oba. “And for me, the politics of holding political office is almost like death. What challenges me most is what I will be remembered for when I leave the State House. ”I harbour no ill feelings against criticisms.
I will do what is just, right and necessary because I am more concerned about what posterity will say about me and my efforts in transforming Nigeria.” In-between sobs in her funeral eulogy on her late Stepmother, the nation’s First Lady, Dame Patience said, “You raised me from a tender age, until I was able to stand on the world’s stage.
You taught me the right from wrong, and made me virtuous and strong. You put in my heart God’s own song. But now that you are gone, you are with your creator who loves you more”.
“Although the pain is still deep and raw, I will forever cherish all your memories and celebrate your life, for you were a mother in a million, who laboured in love to make me what I am today. Fare thee well Mama Sisi as the angels watch over you in heaven”.
In a loud happy mood believing his raging celebrated friction with the President and Nyesom Wike, Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, one of the earliest arrived dignitaries at the funeral was full of energy, dancing, singing and clapping to praise worship tunes rendered by an array of Nigerian Gospel stars.
Roll call of the personalities converged at the funeral include Vice President, Namadi Sambo; Senate President, David Mark; Senate Leader, Senator William Odoma-Egba among other scores of Senators. Others in attendance were all the South-South governors – Governors Ameachi of Rivers; Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa; Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta; Liyel Imoke of Cross River; Godspower Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State and Adams Oshiomole of Edo State.