It is normal and often a cliché for people to address their fathers as mentors, role models and a source of inspiration. This sometimes is not always true especially when the values and philosophies of a father are not reflected in the son who claims is a protégé. The Igbo tribe call it different names- Enyinnaya (a friend of his father), Omekannaya (a true reflection of his father), Obinnaya( the heart of his father) and many others.
For me I have actually been mentored, pampered, scolded, molded, instructed, cared for by this man whom I have grown to love and admire.
- A man would have me sleep on him all through the night.
- One who would always come to pick me up in nursery and primary despite the schedule of a father.
- One who would help me suck out the mucus in my nostrils
- This same man has taken the pain of sending me to the best schools anyone would ask for.
- This man has brought himself so low at one point that my siblings and I would have the best in life.
- A man who would allow me sit with him on the driver’s on our way to the village.
- One who shouts on me and comes back the following morning to apologize to a 5-year-old.
- Who carries me to bed each time I doze off in the sitting room.
- This same man made out time to teach me how to tell the time with our wall clock.
- Interestingly the signature I append today on documents, this same man drafted it for me.
- A man who took me to secondary school and tertiary institutions on my first day in school, stayed with me until I was finally registered.
- He still came all the way from Eastern Nigeria to the capital city of Abuja for my visiting days.
- It is because of this same man that I have been privileged to be who I am today.
- The lessons and values I learnt from him are now what drive and I instill same in my three lovely sisters.
- To crown it all this same man is still the same and has not changed one bit.
- This same man made out time to teach me how to drive, what a man?
- In fact, he has taken the pain of trying to find a help meet for me, please don’t laugh if you grab… *straight face
Irrespective of all these I am not irresponsible, spoilt, or without focus either, so he is indeed a mentor, a friend, confidant and a father, who never laid a finger on me. As he marks another year of his birth, please join me and celebrate this man of integrity, love, care, a leader of people, an indefatigable fighter, an ever-loving husband (my mum has never bought a phone and she is not a housewife ooh, just a tip), and an inspiration to myself and siblings.
Do me a favour and reach him on these lines and tell him how much we (Mum, Nneoma, Ifeoma, Chiamaka) love him-08037239195, 09037457961, 08084344505,08050274844 or on [email protected].
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO Chief Nicholas Ej. Azubuike Osuagwu
This piece was first was published on www.leadershipwithcda.com and on the Nation Newspaper on the 15th of April 2013