No doubt as time rolls by, days break on others and weeks move into months, months into years and years into decades etc, some individuals, especially leaders we grew up to meet or heard about either in our quest for knowledge or moonlight stories, will of course continue to stand tall in our hearts and even in the larger society. This is because, anytime we think about leadership, we no doubt must remember them either for their charming nature and charisma, or for the way they presented themselves.
We also in most cases remember some pertinent conversations they shared with us, speeches they presented, which electrify the crowd with ecstasy, high hopes and laughter. Some of these leaders, if we could recall, picked us up when we were down and they also have faith in us when no one did. I am talking about those highly sacrificial leaders who were so special and unique. They were in all standard great and highly equipped with indomitable abilities to excellently lead their followers to achieve positive and result oriented output.
These kind of men that I am talking about even though some of them are no more, nevertheless, their earthshaking achievements and legacies are still very glaring for everyone to see. I can go on and on. However, for space brevity and inadequate time frame, I pause here to pave way for more vivid descriptive and expository text on a highly full loaded man of vision and an unblemished Nigerian that could best be equal in all standard with those briefly described from the onset of the article.
I am talking about a silent technocrat with a heart of gold who in the past years has been greatly applying his wealth of knowledge, resources, connections and energy to better the lives of every individual that has in one way or the other crossed his path.
He is also a man that has so much interest in the development of the people of Cross River state where he hails from. He is no any other person but a renowned and workaholic down to earth Chief Akin Rickets, the descendant of an African-American missionary who crisscrossed every hamlet in West Africa to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ over a century ago.
Chief Rickets was a commissioner for information in Cross River state, the position he excellently used to redefine leadership in the state Ministry of Information. There is glaring evidence of the positive transformational policies put in place under his watch as commissioner for information to better the lives of every indigene of Cross River state.
In 2019, Akin Rickets also contested for the Cross River Central senatorial election on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). He gallantly lost by a slim margin due to electoral malpractices. One of the sterling qualities of Chief Rickets, which endears him many people that label him as a leader blessed with high empathy, is his love and fear of the Almighty God.
This may be because of his background as a seed of an African-American missionary who about a century ago sacrificed his life to bring development to Nigeria and other parts of Africa. Rickets’ love of God is thrilling to the level that one may think he is Peter, a die-hard disciple of Jesus Christ whom he described as the rock upon which he will build his church and the gate of hell shall not prevail against it!
As an astute leader with clearly defined goals to add great value to human lives, Rickets doesn’t make snap decisions on the ground of hearsay or beer palour talks which are mostly sponsored by disgruntled elements in the society and spread by hired political jobbers and charlatans with no identifiable or traceable office address.
Akin Rickets as a thorough bred technocrat has used his past and present position to greatly improve the quality of lives and infrastructure of his immediate community of Ugep, Cross River Central Senatorial District and the entire Cross River state. Recently, he empowered a number of youths in his senatorial district through the donation of hundreds of motorcycles, farm implement and monetary gifts to enable improve their standard of living.
Some schools of thought opine, since Chief Rickets possesses unmatchable qualities coupled with his landmark achievements which he is tremendously sustaining even till date, that he should take a shot at either the Cross River state governorship position or the Senate, which he once contested for. To say Chief Akin Rickets is eminently competent to vie for even Nigeria’s number one position is more like demanding to know whether Barak Obama, former US president, can run for the president of Kenya.
Indeed and in all ramifications; Chief Rickets has all it takes to govern Cross River state and or represent Cross River Central at the Red Chamber of Nigeria’s National Assembly. This is true because he is a man blessed by God with a heart of gold. He is a quintessential leader that believes in the progress and development of his people and the society at large.
He is easily accessible by everybody especially his people. He is a selfless leader that has the interest of people at heart and deploying his resources to greatly empower those around him especially his people. He also has the spiritual and intellectual prowess to confront any challenge or obstacle that may stand on his way or the development of his people. This is just as his great grandparents did a century ago to ensure better life for the people of Nigeria and some parts of Africa.
Honestly, if I am to highlight the sterling qualities that make many Nigerians across borders and especially Cross River state people to call on him to vie for an elective position come 2023, time will definitely fail me! However, will Chief Akin Rickets hearken to the clarion call of the people of Cross River state to contest for either governorship or senatorial seat come 2023? Time will tell as we eagerly await his opinion as 2023 approaches.
Oche, public affairs analyst and media consultant, writes from Abuja.No tags for this post.