The attached letter came from Imo State Government, through the office of the number two citizen of the State, Prince Eze Madumere. He personally took his time to write to the MIN team, in validation to this year’s edition. It didn’t make it to the final work, as it came after press time. We had done our planning, added to the template as you can see for printing, but due to His Excellency’s busy schedule, it became impossible for it to be on the final work.
I remember the readiness in his face to partner with our team when we ran into each other at the Sam Mbakwe airport. This happened around this same time last year, when we had one of our meetings with the Head of MIN’s Editorial Board at the Aso Villa. While meeting at the airport, he told me of how interested the State government would be in getting involved with the work. He asked for the manuscript, saw the meticulous materials that were contributed by our writers, he said he would want to write the endorsement note himself.
While he hoped on doing it by himself without the help of some aides in his office, engagement from State functions occupied his time. Not until when we got a call from his media aide that the validation note was ready to be mailed. Then, it became too late. Not just his own, it also affected some other validation notes that were sent in by notable Nigerians, alongside the one from Bill Price, in South Africa.
Upon the fact that he sent a validation note, he asked if there was a way the State Government could support the brand. We checked through, there was none. We felt it could sound too deliberate, but we wrote to him about the fund needed for the finishing; this was when we had cleared the first set of order that ran into Six million something. Though the finishing was barely around seven hundred and something thousand; he gladly asked to handle it. But follow up became a challenge for us, as we didn’t have all the time to start preparing documents, plus the fact that we didn’t want external support, especially from government. We didn’t want sponsors to make decisions for us.
Personally, I wish to state that Imo State government was willing to support the building process of MIN, but time was our challenge. There was nothing personal about it. Now that the book is out, it’s never late for them to get involved, especially from the office of the Deputy Governor. That same love can be shown, probably by making this book of influential Nigerians and their success stories to be found in school libraries.
We wouldn’t mind delivering it ourselves on their behalf. Though, this is coming as a suggestion, not as an appeal. Also, we are not trying to impose it on them. As the lead writer of Most Influential Nigerians – MIN, I remember I drew inspiration and motivation from books that represented MIN. It helped in shaping my decision in life. It helped me opt for success. It helped to patiently seek education that we all know is an equalizer between the rich and the poor.
Imo my State can do this. We have started contributing copies to some Foundations that reached us for that. Let it start from the State where I’m from, at least they asked for it. Let this be found in ministries, schools and in the executive office.
As an individual, though I don’t know why the team insisted on tracking Governor Okorocha’s Foundation, after he unveiled Project55555. Due to his philanthropy, though not in politics, I’m sure he may find his way on MIN in the next edition. It’s very likely that he will.
Before I leave you with the validation note written by the Deputy governor of Imo state, Prince Eze Madumere, I wish to thank him most specially for his interest on MIN, even when he slightly suggested that his Boss, Owelle Rochas Okorocha be added to our top twenty Most Influential Nigerians, it’s a sign of sincere loyalty. His request for that was slight, but he was deliberate about seeing him on the chart. Thank you for the show of interest, while we hope that your love for Governor in secret and public would be appreciated by him.
Written by: Ugochukwu Favour-Mayor
Find the below, the validation note:-
Heroism is one ageless attribute that is celebrated all over the world. Nothing excites than witnessing someone do the unthinkable. Looking at the book, Most Influential Nigerians – MIN which is a compendium of stories of those who have distinguished themselves in their differing fields of endeavour, what comes to any patriotic mind is its influence on the younger population.
Going through the book, “Most Influential Nigerians”, and discovering the personalities featured therein, I was really impressed because the backgrounds of the people under study can be properly situated.
Like the Governor of Imo State, Owelle Rochas Okorocha who remains one of the unsung heroes would say, ‘It should be a tradition in the body polity to celebrate those who have positively distinguished themselves in their areas of interest should be celebrated, because such will in no little measure impact positively on the psyche of the young generation and generations yet unborn.’
All over the world, those who are sung are not those who criminally enriched themselves but those who impact their world positively through hard work, creativity and innovations.
I therefore endorse and recommend this book for Nigerians to learn true consistency, creativity and innovations in business and in whatever trade of choice, trying to leave encouraging legacy for those coming after us. And for me this is the missing link if not the elusive tonic in our journey to national development.
Prince Eze Madumere MFR (Fnim, Fsm)
Deputy Governor, Imo State
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