By Kenneth Uwadi
Preparation for the 2023 General Elections is picking up pace, In a few weeks’ time, candidates of the different political parties lined up for the next year’s general election will be known. Public places all over Nigeria are inundated with political meetings and calculations. Unarguably the people of Imo State, South East Nigeria have the biggest decisions of their lives to make in 2023. The people of the State will elect those to represent them at the House of Assembly, House of Reps and at the Senate. Already newspaper reports which have not been denied have it that over eighty persons have picked the forms of various political parties. But in all these calculations, one name is of interest to me and that name is that of Rt Hon Goodluck Nanah Opiah. He is a Politician, Businessman, a Former Member of the Imo State House of Assembly, Former Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly, Former member of the House of Representatives , Former Special Adviser to the Governor of Imo State, Imo State Coordinator of Oil and Gas Matters and the Imo State Commissioner for Petroleum Resources.
Opiah is counted among men who have occupied leadership positions with genuine intentions to serve their fatherland, with loads of enviable and unmatched credentials. This man has indicated interest to run for the Orlu Zone Senatorial seat under the APC and has since submitted his expression of interest and nomination forms. A quintessential gentleman who came clean into the political firmament complete with intelligence, candor, charm, allure and fragrance without painting himself black. For instance we remember his days in the Federal House of Reps from 2015 – 2019 were he not only gave a good account of himself as a legislator but had more bills and motions of national significance attached to his name.
As Imo State Commissioner for Petroleum Resources he has been assisting the Governor of the State smartly in the Oil affairs of the state. He has been able to prove to cynics that the office of the Commissioner of Petroleum is not about propaganda, not about ranting, not about defending bad policies and not about shouting hoarse to win the ears of the Governor rather he has been contributing in moderating the policies of government, ensuring at least such policies were un-hurting and friendly to the people of the State. Opiah is a good man. Honestly we have good men in all walks of life. Opiah is one of such men. He has integrity. He is cool-headed, principled. . If he is for you, then someone is for you. If he is against you, then you are in trouble. As a politician, he has proved his mettle. He has made the people of the oil kingdom proud. Since he joined politics he has transformed the oil areas of the state from neglect to recognition, from instability to peaceful co-existence and from indignity to human dignity and respect. This transformation would not have been possible without political will, vision, mission, foresight and fear of God in leadership.
He was in the Imo House of Assembly firstly from 2003-2007 during which period, he founded the Imo State Oil Producing Area Development Commission ( ISOPADEC ) through a private-member bill. Many of his admirers watched him become Speaker of the House in 2007. As Speaker, he made Late Eze SN Uzor Chairman of ISOPADEC and through ISOPADEC several roads were done in Ohaji/Egbema, and Oguta. As Speaker he gave instructions and ISOPADEC offered scholarships to students. He gave orders for countless markets to be built in the communities of Ohaji/Egbema and Oguta . He gave so many people jobs and scholarships. ISOPADEC also paid NEPA bills for the people of the oil areas for years through his efforts. He also promoted the law that created the present Imo State Polytechnic. Through him so many persons from the oil kingdom received political appointments. He believes that the way to help youths is empowerment and has given a lot of people the unique opportunities to be useful to the society through career jobs. When he was at the federal House of Reps he attracted several government projects, road projects, decent jobs, water and other essential services to his constituency.
Now that he wants to be the Senator for Imo West, a senatorial zone in Imo State, comprising of the entire geographical areas of: Ideato North Local Government Area, Ideato South Local Government Area, Isu Local Government Area, Njaba Local Government Area, Nwangele Local Government Area, Nkwerre Local Government Area, Oguta Local Government Area, Ohaji/Egbema Local Government Area, Orlu Local Government Area, Orsu Local Government Area,Oru East Local Government Area and Oru West Local Government Area, may he find favour before God and Man. May he be successful.
Why is his profile rising so steadily in a distasteful Nigerian political waters, the answer is simple, he comes across as a great visionary leader with an unusual capacity to think ahead of issues and events. His postulations have often unfolded with scientific precision making him not only the man with prophetic political statements but one who stands out in the crowd as a man who means well to his society, but the naked truth about him is that while other politicians in Nigeria are busy enjoying their wealth and flaunting it before the poor masses, the likes of Opiah are daily brainstorming over the state political problems and proffering solutions without going to the media and the governor to show off as one who is patriotic and one who is in support of the administration. Without doubt therefore observers say he is viewed as a great political personality coming from the Oil region of Imo State. He will indeed restore hope to the Orlu Zone. He will put a smile on the faces of the masses of the Zone.He has our support. We need not say more.
–Kenneth Uwadi lives in Mmahu-Egbema, Imo State, Nigeria