Off-the-Turf

 

A member of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, representing Yenegoa, Alfred Egba says scrabble is more than just a game for him, it helps to decompress him too. Segun James writes 
Alfred Egba is better described as a child of destiny. He was for some time a security detail attached to a former governor of Bayelsa State. He had also been detailed at different times by the department of State Security (DSS) to protect eminent and prominent persons in the society such as the former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon; former Speaker of the Hoouse of Representatives, Alhaji Ghali Umar Na’Aba; former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Chibudom Nwuche; former Deputy Governor of Ebonyi State, Dr, Chigozie Ogbu and former Governor of Rivers State, Dr. Peter Odili without knowing he had also been destined to become a lawmaker himself.
Just as it is usual with life, Egba spent over seven years between 2000 and 2007 protecting dignitaries without knowing that he would soon become one of them as a legislator as he was in 2007 elected to represent Yenagoa in the state House of Assembly.
For Egba, however, everything revolves round the waters. He is a fisherman, fish farmer and swims very well too. A visit to his home just behind the infamous Tower Hotel in Yenagoa reveals a man at home with nature. But that is not all that is with this Graduate of Mass Communication from the Rivers State University of Science and Technology (RSUST), who made security and protection of life and property his primary forth.
Today, he is also a graduate of law at the Delta State University, Abraka and wants to specialise in conflict resolution. This is understandable given his antecedents. Apart from fishing, the other thing that gives Egba a sense of understanding in his new calling is the game of Scrabble. Egba believes that politics can be likened to Scrabble, a game that surprises with unexpected word combinations, and when you think you have a perfect word, the move from your opponent can destabilise your every plan.
It was such move that propelled Egba to become a two term member of the Bayelsa Assembly, one of the few persons to have such a privilege, given the intricate political system of the state.
Born some 40 years ago in Nembe, the native of Famgbe in Yenagoa, Egba attended the Nembe National Grammar School before proceeding to the UST to study Mass Communications, after which he joined the DSS. 
The other thing that gives Egba satisfaction is Education and the love of learning. It was this love for education that encouraged him to attend the Business School of the University of Oxford as well as The Management School, London.
He was the head of the Bayelsa State delegation to the Netherlands on the Dutch government collaboration with the state government on development efforts. Aside this, he also attended several Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Conferences between 2007 and 2015, as a member of the state legislature.
Today, Egba is a member of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bayelsa State, having moved from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) along with is political leader, Chief Timipre Sylva in 2014. Even as Egba continues to calculate and plot against the opposition in his political Scrabble, there is no doubting the fact that he knows the game.