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Interrogating the Godwin Maduka Factor in Anambra Politics
Tony Amadi highlights the achievements of Dr. Godwin Maduka, one of the leading aspirants for the governorship ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party in Anambra State
In recent times, public discourse in Anambra expectedly centre on the potential replacement for Anambra Governor Willie Obiano. One of the names on every slip is a front runner in the race, Dr. Godwin Maduka, who is the Medical Director of Las Vegas Pain Institute, a vast array of six frontline hospitals in the USA state of Texas who has entered the race for Anambra 2021 gubernatorial election.
At this juncture, it is important to beam the search light on the likely candidates, particularly Maduka to help Nigerians in general understand and make the right leadership choices. Obviously there are quite a good number of people contesting the gubernatorial polls in Anambra and while the media may not keep complete tab on the number of contestants, there are key candidates you cannot keep out of any analysis.
The antecedents of Godwin Maduka is already well known as the poor lad who left Nigeria some 40 years ago in search of education, fame, fortune and the American dream. After obtaining three doctorate degrees including Medicine, Pharmacy and others established the Pain Institute, he began to develop his hometown of Umuchukwu in Orumba South Local Government Area of Anambra State in a manner never witnessed before in Nigeria.
In the past 20 years, he poured out his own hard earned resources to erect infrastructure in the small town. First ,was a standard hospital he handed to the Catholic Church to enable adequate health service reach his beloved people. This was followed by two churches for Catholic and protestants, houses for about 100 widows, a magistrate and high courts for the quick dispensation of justice, primary and secondary schools, a monastery and then a police facility for easy dispensation of justice and law enforcement.
It was when he started road infrastructure around the town that the government of former Governor Peter Obi came in to help with the asphalting of the roads which combined to make Umuchukwu a complete city in its own right. I could not believe what I saw when I went to the town to verify what I had read in newspapers, television, conventional and social media as well. I was stunned to disbelief on the weekend that I came to see the wonderful town.
The idea of politics was never in his mind when he was performing the infrastructural magic upon his home town. The development he had wrought on Umuchukwu began to blossom across the state and people were wondering what was happening and he began to visualize the possibility of his vision spreading state wide across Anambra. He concluded that it will be a beautiful thing for Anambra to get the same development that his hometown was witnessing. The only way this could work was to seek political power for the benefit of the state and by extension, the country Nigeria.
This son of a native doctor has arrived. He used to accompany his father to the bush to pick up roots and leaves for medical treatment of his people and augmented his school fees by climbing palm trees to pluck the fruits. He recalled falling down the trees on eight different occasions. This was the genesis of his quest to study medicine in the first place. For the past 20 years after his Harvard Medical School graduation and the setting up of his hospitals in Nevada, another part of his nature began to crystalize: philanthropism.
Of course Nigeria can boast of top flight philanthropists, but I am yet to meet one that can surpass the depth of Dr. Godwin Maduka’s philanthropism. To complete this level of philanthropy, the Nigerian American medical doctor has just completed the building of a 17 storey medical research center in Umuchukwu for the study and research of not only tropical medicine but a medical institution that will help end medical tourism in Nigeria and halt the billions of dollars our country spends in search of medical treatment abroad.
Dr. Maduka has spent the past two months acquainting himself with the rudiments of political engineering, political campaigning and essentially contacting the power players of the state and country, explaining his ambition and mission to fasten the pace of economic, political and technological development of South-east’s flagship state and take it to another height that has so far not been reached since the days of Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Dr. Michael Okpara, Jim Nwobodo and others.
He has in the process shown his people the pedigree he is bringing into the fray and how he intends to purify the muddied waters of Anambra politics and steer its economic fortunes to prosperity.
I joined his entourage in 11 of the 21 local government areas where he addressed members of his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) delegates to the convention which will decide who of the large number of gubernatorial contestants that will fly the party’s flag for the November 2021 elections.
Dr. Godwin Maduka, may appreciate the various nicknames he has already become known for, such as Lion of Africa, Okosisi Orumba, even the Philanthropist of the Millennium as well as the various awards he has been picking up in the course of his political quest, but he knows that it is not going to be easy if he makes it to Agu Awka, the power centre or government house of the state,
Maduka’s soapbox oratory was simply outstanding and is not only classy in the tradition of Nnamdi Azikiwe but has molded himself into the man to beat in the forthcoming contest.
The enduring message he gives out at each stop in the rigorous political tours is that the delegates at the primaries and the larger voters at the election should find out from each aspirant courting for their votes to tell them what they have done for their various people and community before seeking to take on governing the state as a whole. That seems a reasonable starting point that will help to separate the men from the boys.
In a state where virtually every town has produced billionaires and politics has become a very serious business, Dr Maduka has made sure that politics was no longer business as usual and whoever wants to lead the state should have impacted his community in a manner that his performance was no longer going to be in doubt.