MY SECONDARY SCHOOL GOVERNMENT TEACHER MR CHRISTOPHER EHONU Played A CRUCIAL ROLE IN MY POLITICAL JOURNEY —-FRIDAY ITULAH.
The role of good Teachers in influencing the choice of career and life endeavours cannot be over emphasized.
A lot of good Teachers come to mind when I think of Teachers whom I recall with fond memories, and have come in contact with during my formative years.
One of such exceptional and pragmatic Teacher who stands out distinctively as my most favourite is Mr. Christopher Michael I. Ebhonu, from Ebelle, in Igueben Government Arrea of Edo State.
Mr. Ebhonu was my Government Teacher in Class Three during my Secondary School Education in Esan Grammar School Uromi, Edo State, Nigeria.
Mr. C. M. I. Ebhonu was an exceptional Teacher gifted with the ability to impart knowledge and shape destinies in positive dimensions.
Admirably tall and handsome, ebony black with a baritone voice and speaks Queens English and was in his late thirties at that time. Beyond that, what particularly endeared me to him was his vast knowledge of the subject (Government) which he was exceptionally good at. In imparting the knowledge of Government to his students, he takes pains to give his best and every student was able to understand the concept of his narratives. He tells you about all types of government; the Presidential, Parliamentary and the Monachichal. He will explore the entire universe, down to Africa relating the various power struggles, the rise and fall of world empires, colonialism in Africa and the rise of African great Nationalists like Kwame Nkrumah, Herbert Macaulay, Kenneth Kaunda, Anthony Enahoro, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Tafawa Balewa and a host of others.
His methodology of taking classes was a lot different from that of his Colleagues, as he related a lot with the current happenings and had a great sense of humor. This made his classes interactive, flexible and pragmatic.
His teachings stirred the fire in me and acted as the catalyst which spurred me up to venture into politics.
When I t told him of my intention to run for elective position in the country after my graduation from the University, he was so excited and gave me, all the encouragement and pieces of advice. Amongst what he said, which I can remember, while quoting the former President Winston Churchill of the United States of America was : “In war, you can be killed once, but in politics many times“,
Ebhonu believed that politics is the only means where the cries of the masses are heard! According to him, in politics, you will meet many catastrophes and all sorts of beasts in the field. But the enthusiasm to focus on what you are there for, matters a lot. Your goal should be your main aim; your objective should be people’s oriented. Don’t think of yourself but think of the masses, the jobless, the poor, the women the children and the next generation.
As Mr Ebhonu’s advice and encouragement fell on good ground in me. After the completion of my Secondary School education where I made a B grade in Government and the University graduation, nothing could hold me back after just a year of working in the Presidency under the then DSM (MAMSER). I lunched out my political sojourn with the local government legislative Arm under the Zero Party where I was overwhelmingly elected as Councillor in my ward 7 Esan North, Uromi and rose from there to become the Speaker, Edo State House of Assembly, and also two times Member of the House of Representatives, and today, I am still contributing my quota to the development of Esan land, Edo State and Nigeria in general through refined and people oriented politics. I am looking up to God and the good people of my Senatorial District of Esan Land for their gracious imprimatur to represent them as their Obedient Servant at the Upper House of the National Assembly.