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Pastor Umo Eno: A man of humility and peace, why he is the best for Akwa Ibom people, By James Akpan

One of the defining and endearing features of the newly unveiled successor to Governor Udom Emmanuel, the Honourable Commissioner for Lands and Water Resources, Pastor Umo Eno, is his humility and peaceful disposition.

Long before he came into the public square, those who had encountered him have always been pleasantly shocked and astounded by the level of humility he often displays.

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“About 11 years ago, I had an encounter with Pastor Umo Eno, which established an enduring sprit of attachment to him and his philosophy of life” Chief Ndaeyo Ekpe, a businessman, had started

Speaking further, he said; “I have never met him and I was not sure of the manner of a person I would meet. Would he snarl at me or treat me condescendingly, given the fact that I needed help from him? I was pleasantly surprised when his secretary came and ushered me into his office less than five minutes after I had arrived. He relaxed me, and listened attentively to my request.

“He looked at me, smiling, and went on to tell the story of his life and assured me that if he overcame, I, too, will, and went ahead to grant me my prayers.

“I was shocked at the level of his humility, his Christian values and virtues and the humanity in him. I mean, here was a very successful man, who given the way most people of his success level behave, I had thought would treat me haughtily and with condescension.

“That day, I left his office, praying that someday, God should lift him even further to a larger platform where he would utilize such, to affect and affect lasting impact on a generality of the people. I am glad today, God has answered my prayers, Pastor Umo Eno would be a fantastic Governor, and he will continue the Christ-centric governance of the current Governor, Udom Emmanuel.”

The sentiments above are recurrent narratives about Pastor Eno, his humility, which brings to point the picture of the consultation he made to Governor Emmanuel, which a section of the opposition media have latched onto, to weave a narrative which, essentially advertises their ignorance and paucity of morals. It is very sad and bewildering that rather than celebrate humility, which the picture represents, they have pilloried the picture with disapproving narratives to suit a narrow purpose.

All over the world, powerful people, even past Presidents of the United States, have bowed or knelt down before small and powerful people as a sign of humility. Such show of humility does not remove from what they stand for; neither does it affect the core of their beliefs.

Early in the life of Barack Obama’s Presidency, while on a visit to Saudi Arabia, he bowed before the Saudi King. He didn’t mind that he occupied the most powerful office in the world. He said, he did so, based on tradition and of his spirit of humility. Same thing has been done by the current President, Joe Biden who knelt down before late George Floyd’s daughter whose father was shot and killed by the police, last year.

Humility is a required ingredient for success and it speaks to the kind of a leader the opposition elements have in mind. From the negative narratives they have woven about the highly commendable show of humility by Pastor Umo Eno, akwa ibom people should be alarmed by the type of a leader they want to foist on the people.

They are essentially saying they are looking for a governor who would play God, who would act like a king, a proud and haughty leader who would broke no dissent and thus return us to the fearful days, we had since left behind. Pastor Umo Eno should be commended and not be pilloried for displaying humility and the peaceful and God- fearing disposition.

James Akpan wrote from Uyo

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