MY MISSION TO THE SENATE – SAM NGWU
Sam Ngwu is a fellow of American College of physicians but he yearns to return and bring his experience to bear on the politics of his home sate, Enugu. He now aspires to represent one of the zones at the senate. In this brief chat he explains his reasons for the venture. Excerpts
Can we get to know you better
I am Dr. Sam Ngwu, am from Ogui Nike in Enugu East Local Government Area, I went to College of Immaculate Conception Enugu, went to the United States of America went to the University of North Texas and then went to Medical School at University of Texas Health Science Centre in Saint Anthonio and then did my residency at South West Medical Centre in Dallas, Texas in St. Paul where I remained on staff as an internal Medicine specialist/consultant till date. I owned my own medical clinic in United States and have Doctors and Nurses working for me and am also internal consultant in other hospitals, including vibrant hospitals, life care health specialty hospitals of Dallas and specialty hospital of Dallas.
How qualified are you to represent enugu senatorial east zone
As far as qualification goes am a very well qualified for the job, after being a doctor of medicine then am a fellow America College of Physicians, am also a humanitarian and I have been involved in the African Health Care crisis since 2002, so am very qualified to serve my people of Enugu East Senatorial Zone.
By declaring your intention to contest, it is assumed that you are convinced that the incumbent senator has not done enough to deserve another term in office.
Ah! That is correct, like I said I am qualified to serve my people, this country needs a new kind of leadership, the leadership with a sense of vision, leadership with selfless service, selfless intent, leadership with conscious so that we can start delivery to the public, being a legislature has its functions you have to know the functions of a legislature to be able to deliver to the people.
This is important you have been away from the country for some time and you may not know the political terrain
That is not quite correct, I have maintain a home here in Enugu which is my home town for the past five years, so I lived here and also live in United States and I come home quite often to do medical mission work, I come home to do business and cultural issues with regards to my community and my people, so am not a stranger to Nigerian politics and to Nigerian community.
Do you share the views of many nigerians that since 1999 the impact of democracy is yet to be felt by majority of nigerians as far as their standard of living is concerned
That's correct and that was why I said that this country needs a new kind of leadership, leadership with a sense of vision, leadership with selfless intent so that the impact of democracy, the dividend of democracy can start impacting the public, the population and the people
What specific areas of governance do you intend to make your priorities
Health! Health! Health! As a medical doctor and being involved in the African Health Care Crisis especially here in Nigeria for many years now for about 10 years I feel our health care in this country needs to be standardized, I feel that credential process needs to be done not somebody bringing a certificate from India as a medical doctor and he comes here and start working, practicing without any body checking his background and can you imagine based on my profession, being a member of the senate committee on health then we can start standardizing Health care crisis in this country, we can start credentialing process, things that impact the people's well being.
In your opinion, has there been any improvement since 1999 in the quality of our politics especially in respect of contest for political offices.
I think this is the first time in the history of this country that democracy would actually be actualized and practiced the way it should be and am quite convinced that the country is ready for a change, the leadership of this country the president and the chairman of the political parties especially my party PDP are ready for a change, they are ready for the new generation of leadership that would take this country to the next century or to the quality of what it ought to pact in the 21st century.
You just talked about PDP, now i want to ask you do you prescribe or subscribe to the politics of god fatherism and if so who are those behind you, any god father
I don't subscribe to the politics of god fatherism , I strongly believe is anti democracy, it is anti selfless service, it is actually dictatorial because you are not allowed to serve, you are not allowed to be your own person, am here to serve the people, I have a background history of public selfless service to the people of Enugu State and am sure I believe that goodwill will take me to this seat as a senator to continue to serve our people.
You are a physician in the united states of america but often time you come home from your perspective having lived abroad and in nigeria how would you describe a healthy life of a nigerian.
The short life of a Nigerian is sub standard, you know the life span of Nigeria is 49 years and that is below Ghana and Cameroon and that is because there are no preventive health care initiatives, there are no comprehensive public health Education, there is too much taboo here in this place, take for instance, hypertension is rampant in this country and people go around they don't watch their diet, they don't take medicine, they don't even know they have high blood pressure and as a result we are catching kidney disease at stage three and at stage three it is reversible and if you catch hypertension earlier you can start the person on medication, teach them what to eat and what not to eat, what to drink and what not to drink and that is where life starts modification comes into preventive health crisis, another rampant thing here in our country is prostate cancer, from age 40 any black man needs to have a yearly check up of prostate specific enzyme and if you have a family history of prostate cancer like your father or your uncle then you need to start checking it earlier on like age 35, prostate Cancer is curable if you can catch it on time but here in this country before you catch it, is spread beyond the capsule and that is where there is not much you can do about it.
In your community what have you done for the village man or woman that made you think you will be acceptable and appreciated amongst them.
There is no family here in Nike that am not taking care of one or two family members and is not taking one medicine, is chronic like diabetes, high blood pressure, they have to take the medicine for the rest of their lives. I have taken a young girl of 22 years from this country with brain turmoil to the United States actually from this my village Nike for a brain surgery; I also have a seven years old from udi with a hole in the heart which is schedule to have surgery in November 2 of this year. I have also supported my community events hence I have supported my local church the 22 passenger bus that they drive today I provided it to them, then I maintain the bus for them, I have given scholarships, all the young widows in my community in Ogui, Nike I pay them a stipend monthly, they have young to eat and their husbands died for one reason or the other and I feel it is humane for me to at least make sure that these children should have something to eat and we worry about education as they grow up.
What would want to be remembered for when you win as the senator of the federal republic of nigeria.
I want to be remembered as a public servant, as a humane servant, as somebody who cares for the poor, as somebody who has compassion and if God gives me the senate seat, I will use it to do nothing but to serve, serve the people, serve the heartland am in it just because of the poor there is nothing I want in that place that God has given to me. Each time I cross my village market I am crying when I see the people living condition, when I see the slums when I see unavoidable death, the disease process going unchecked and I say God use me to truncate my people.