By Aic Akwarandu
The feelings in Imo are better felt than imagined. The city is in high spirit, awaiting the arrival of a brand New Governor, a home boy and a Son of the soil. Ihedioha’s coming has indeed reassured hope and ignited the true spirit of an Imo Man.
Before now, Imo People were angry and a little hostile. Not because they want to be that way but because they have been led badly. They lost confidence in leadership and everyone became “to your tent oh Israel”.
What Ihedioha has done differently in the past two days is that He has brought back the confidence level of an Imo Man. He has restored the happiness of ndi Imo. He has shown that one don’t need to have a commissioner for happiness to make people happy. All one need is to appear ready, prepared, sincere and dogged. These Ihedioha has shown to Ndi Imo that Under his watch, Imo shall once again be respected among the comity of States.
The Novelty Match at Dan Anyiam Stadium today will remain indelible in the minds of Ndi Imo. The football match shows what Ihedioha will do differently when He assumes office in the next two days. For the first time in recent history, all major Imo sons in the entertainment industry and sports are returning home to contribute to the development, happiness and the growth of their State.
It is on record that this is the first time in the history of our dear State Imo that the State is witnessing such an inauguration ceremony. One significant thing is that the people are not mobilized, they just want to get the information of where it is happening and they are there. At the Stadium today, the Stands were filled that people had to access the pitch just to have a glimpse at Imo legends.
Another significant thing to note is that we have not had the caliber of old players and football stars who played today in the history of any novelty match played in recent times. Yes, that is “Ihediohanization” for you. The excitement on the faces of Ndi Imo seeing the likes of Kanu Nwankwo, a former Super Eagles Captain and the Captain of the Under 23 Team that won the Atlanta 1996 World Cup, Uche Okechukwu former Super Eagles Captain, Peter Rufai, Kelechi Nwakali, former captain of the Under 17 that won the Under 17 World Cup, and the almighty Etim Esim of the then Iwuanyanwu Nationale, can better be experienced than imagined.
Etim Essian started His football life in Imo. He was one of the greatest players of his generation. It is on record that through the dint of hard-work, He became the first person to drive a 505 evolution in Owerri courtesy of Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu. Coming back to play in the field where He made a name in the past will remain indelible in his sports library.
For Ndi Imo, there are many Etim Essian. Many Imolites have not been to the Stadium for the past 10 years. As Arch Bishop Obinna Said yesterday during the Interdenominational Church service and I quote, “I have not been to this place for the past 10 years. It seems things are beginning to get better with what I’m seeing”.
Imolites are happy to see the Stadium come back to life. They are happy to see the flood lights of the Stadium which serves as major source of sight during the night to those living around the Stadium, shine again. They are happy to see the place habitable once again.
Other players who played at the Novelty Match includes, Mutiu Adepoju, Mobi Oparaku, Ogbonna Kanu, wahidi Akanni, Etim Esim, Peter Rufai, Samson Siasia and Obinna Nwaneri. Other were, Sunny Opara, Ifeanyi Udeze, Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Mike Obi, Benzico Nwosu, Victor Ikpeba and Collins Amadi. Emeka Ike, Tchidi Chikere, Victor Osuagwu, Kanayo O Kanayo, Osita Iheme, amongst others , were among the entertainers that played.
As Ihedioha takes over in the next two days, think Imo, Think Prosperity, Lets Rebuild Imo.