Joe C Anatune
Growing up, I was regaled with stories of the exploits of Igbo women by my paternal auntie Mgbeke Uche and mother of my good friends Obiora and Paul. She was active in many of those agitations which were beneficial to the betterment of our society. Particularly, she would recall with nostalgia the 1929 Aba women riot which in my view would have been more appropriately termed Aba women agitation. But the colonial masters used the word ‘riots’ to undermine their patriotic zeal.
I have therefore come to respect the opinions of women in matters of nation building or development. They bear and feel the pains as mothers and home makers. So they know where it pinches the most.
So when recently the women of Orumba in Anambra gathered in large numbers to ask Chukwuma Soludo to run for the office of governor of Anambra State, I felt that the clamour has taken a different dimension. Why?
Women are resolute and even persistent in the pursuit of what they believe in, especially issues of family welfare and wellbeing. And as I watched them sing and dance, it was clear to me that they have made their pick. Their body language behind the facade of singing and dancing was palpable to discerning observers.
Significantly, they went down on their knees to register their demand to underpin the importance and urgency of their request.
They recalled that Soludo did promise in the build up to the 2010 Anambra governorship election which he participated in, to make Anambra the African Dubai-Taiwan. They chorused with relish that they want Dubai in Anambra and the good life that go with it. While commending the good works of Governor Willie Obiano, they ferociously asked him to give them Soludo.
Watching them was ennobling, intriguing and even heart warning because our rural women are no longer left out in the dream and quest for a first world Anambra state – building on the good works of past and current Governors.
Now that the women of Orumba, a major food basket, have spoken and ndi- Anambra are speaking in the north, central and south, we hope Soludo is listening. The voice of the people is the voice of God.