By Ikechukwu Gilbert

"Nobody talks about you when you are nobody," says Tu-Face Idibia in one of his hit songs. Listening to one of Nigeria's best in the entertainment industry will live no one in doubt that the song as simple as it filters the ear, it also has such a philosophical undertone. It can always make one begin to re-evaluate the meaning and the essence of gossip. True, it has two sides of the coin. The good and the bad.

It takes only those who understand the above philosophy to reamain traditionally very slow to talk. They are painstaking and patience to sifting out, feeling and touching what must be talked about. The saying: “My people perish for lack of knowledge”, is a word of wisdom extracted from the bible; it implies that what you don't know remains a mystery to you, and what you know prepares a path for you; how much more those who keep talking about what they know nothing about like as if they know. Most times disguising a motive founded on demand or blackmail to propagate what they don't know or care to know (investigative journalism). To some, laziness to dig deep inspires the reason behind propaganda, image-tarnishing and negative criticism.

Fast becoming a practice in Nigeria is for its leaders to suffer unjust persecutions in the hands of negative critics, sometimes justifiable if the leader is found wanting, not all of them though! As the likes of Prince Eze Madumere exudes a redefined leadership attitude garnished with an unfeigned characteristic simplicity (being himself and not trying to be any other person) cum undiluted sincerity; Humble disposition of self to truly serve his fatherland, an opportunity enabled by his boss and mentor, the executive Governor of Imo state, His Excellency Owelle Rochas Okorocha.

The openness of this unique leadership maestro, gone viral, has attracted for him, Prince Eze Madumere, open criticisms, both good and bad, everybody wants a feel of him. As his popularity expands, threatened, some want his position, others his attention! Strategies are devised to achieve this, most popular of them, a stricture that only meets a steel-clad absorbant that form or make up his personality yet he remains accommodating in an ever lively demeanor that welcomes all with open hands, both enemies and friends. Hate or like him, he is loved by so many; which continues to see the unprecedented spread of his popularity.

Lending an advisory voice of wisdom to the activities of those (opposition or unfriendly friends) that prefer to mould an idea of what they feel of Prince Eze Madumere from a distance; sacrifice the distance, come close and feel the reality of what true leadership can be: harmless, precise, God-fearing and humble. It would not be too much to attempt to truly know him rather than concoct imaginary knowledge that misleads true representation. The self-styled Deputy Governor holds a self-willed opinion on diverse issues, which has continued to determine his success on this exalted path that fate has placed him.

It is a free world, talk is free, watching is free (spectatorship), but playing is restricted to a set of determined players (participatorship), they control and regulate the collective affairs of a people. For spectators, standing as side-umpires, and seeing what the participators don't see, through constructive criticism can make a case presentation for remedy. It shows true support for development and not a show of envy or pessimism.

Sound leaders like the Deputy Governor of Imo state, His Excellency Prince Eze Madumere, don't deserve some of the negative hits they get (though it's just a few). It is easily assumed to be politics anyway, forgetting quickly the affront it poses to a peoples much desired quest for the best leadership. Eze Madumere depicts this true leadership. His easy accessibility, regardless his position as Deputy Governor, enshrines a heart to heart leadership proximity that should offer inquisitive minds answers from the horse's mouth. In clear terms, a most significant feature of leadership is closeness to the people; it breeds sensitivity which in turn expedites action in resolving the people's plight.

Each day and time, man dreams, prays and desires the best of leadership. But times have shown that having the best of leadership may not be the problem. Response to the best leadership may have undoubtedly become the irresolvable issue bedeviling development especially in this part of the world. Regardless Owelle's great achievements like never seen before in Imo state, some still find it hard coming to terms with the ongoing massive change, a change they must have someday wished for!

Ideologies may differ but development is same; sharing a different idea with today's Government in Imo does not mean that development is not in progress. All hands need to be on deck; at this point Imo needs everyone. Thank God for the re-defined people-oriented leadership spearheaded by Owelle and his most reliable assistant Prince Eze Madumere, thank God for today's Imo!

IKechukwu Gilbert

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