Most times, when we hear about stories of great men… We just exclaim “Oh! That man is so lucky”… Yes! He or She may be lucky but they didn’t just fold their arms and wait for luck to locate them… We have roles to play!- Marilyn Anona. I have enjoyed the comments on this page especially the use of the quote from my favorite author Chinua Achebe, the benevolent Chi has indeed broken my palm kernel……but it required me to pluck the palm kernels first. During Asuu strikes in the early 90s I worked for the Guardian as a business reporter of course with no salary….I got transport allowance only. How did I get the job? Walked into the Guardian office and waited for the Managing Director, Lade Bonuola, who was surprised at the strange request of a reporter job without pay from a Student whose major is not Mass Communication. After the first strike I was offered a permanent vacation job by The Guardian, that’s where I made lasting friendships till today amongst the business and political elite…..plucking the palm kernel. I came to serve in Abuja and did not miss COMMNUNITY DEVELOPMENT for one day for one whole year. I started a personal community development initiative called EXAM E and we staged dramas in schools and had a conference for WAEC , JAMB AND TEACHERS sponsored by Sheraton hotel and NOA. I used my allowance to pay my fellow corp members taxi fare to remote schools and I was rewarded with an NYSC Award and automatically employed by the FCDA. As a level 8 officer I was asked to take notes, due to passable writing skills I had developed at The Guardian, at a meeting and from there I was appointed secretary of the Committee on the visit of Pope John Paul, a defining moment for me as the Holy See personally commended me for the organization of the visit which included my ensuring that the Pope mobile was used at 3 locations in 2 days! Plucking the palm kernel…. I became the personal Assistant to the minister of state ministry of works chief Okete in 1997, returned to the FCT as Protocol Officer to Gen Useni the FCT Minister and Assistant Secretary of the 1999 military to civilian Handover committee under General Y Nom, the committee commended me for ” exceptional dedication and courage in the face of daunting difficulties” plucking the palm kernel….. In 2000 I became Personal Assistant to the Minister of Transport chief Ojo Maduekwe, who requested for me from the FCT. He has been my senior friend since his days as a columnist. During my time with him I went to National University of Singapore for a graduate diploma on maritime and Port management sponsored by the Singaporean Government due to my performance, Nigeria got sponsorship for three consecutive years against the original plan of spreading it amongst developing nations….plucking the palm kernel.. Just a small information to avoid the young readers from waiting for a benevolent Chi….you will need to pluck the Palm Kernels first…. – Osita Chidoka (Minister for Aviation). Be Enlightened! Be Inspired!! Be Motivated!!!
OSITA CHIDOKA writes : The benevolent Chi has indeed broken my palm kernel……but it required me to pluck the palm kernels first.