God Bless You Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi By Ibim Semenitari

imageOn a certain Thursday, I left Lagos for Port Harcourt armed with Business Eye magazine, a sample of the performance journal we had done for some other persons and another copy of the proposal for Rivers State. I arrived and was picked up courtesy of my dad( will talk about my awesome parents some other time) and headed straight to Government House, Port Harcourt. At the gate I faced zero delay and was pleasantly surprised. I made a mental note to talk about it in Roving Eye, my weekly column. But more was to come, I was directed to behind the Banquet hall in government house where His Excellency the governor and members of cabinet were in a strategy/ training session. Blessing Nwikina, my old friend and colleague obviously knew a bit more of why I was there than I did. He got Government House photographers to click away. That was unusual but I just thought- vintage Blessing and his penchant for drama- little did I know that the joke was on me. Not one to waste much time, governor Amaechi stepped aside from his meeting to see me. I quickly brought out BE and my letter to hand over. Blessing insisted on a shot of me presenting the magazine to the governor, and he obliged us but then went straight to the point – what would you say if I ask you to serve Rivers people as commissioner of Information, the governor asked? I was taken aback. How, when? I started and the stopped – ” sir I said, I don’t have to be your commissioner of Information to work with you. I admire your passion for Rivers people and zeal and will be willing to do what I can to ensure you succeed from my desk.” The Governor cut in at this point. ” that is not what I asked. I asked would you be willing to be my commissioner of Information?” He repeated. I wasn’t sure I could make such a commitment there and then. I had a lot to worry about, my nine year old son, my new baby., The Business Eye Magazine and my prejudice against Public service especially working with politicians. I needed a clearer head and a different space. Please let me think about it I told the governor and also let me speak with Henry( my husband) and my dad. He agreed but gave me a two weeks deadline. ” I don’t have time. I want to submit your name to the Assembly.” I thanked him and left. This was in the month of August. For believing in my abilities and asking me to serve even in the midst of competing interest asking him not to appoint me, I celebrate my boss, my birthday mate, my big brother and my friend. I am thankful you invited me to join you in service to Rivers people and I know that posterity will count you as a worthy servant and diligent public officer. God bless you Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, Governor, Rivers state.

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