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Sam Daddy & Sam Mbakwe.

The birth of Samuel in the Holy Bible was a fulfillment of the promise by God and it heralded unquantifiable joy in the life of Hannah and Elkanah. SAMUEL was a PRAYER answered. He represented a promise made and kept. Hannah asked God for a child and vowed to dedicate him to the service of God. Hannah’s prayer was answered with the birth of  Samuel. Hannah didn’t renege on her promise to dedicate Samuel to God while Samuel himself embraced God’s with joy.

The name SAMUEL stands for prayer answered and promise kept, IMO STATE is undoubtedly in dire need of a SAMUEL in this critical moment of her chequered history. The last time Imo State had a Samuel was between 1979 to 1983 when SAMUEL Mbakwe reigned as Governor of old Imo State. Dee Sam, as he was fondly called was elected on the platform of Nigerian People’s Party (NPP). During electioneering campaigns, Dee Sam made promises to Imo people and kept them. Dee Sam Mbakwe massively transformed Imo State by providing motorable and durable roads, industries, pipe borne water, built schools, provided electricity, etc that are still standing across the entire (old) Imo State till date. 

The legacy projects of Dee SAM Mbakwe include:

1. Imo State University (now Abia State University, Uturu).

2. College of Technology Nekede (now Federal Polytechnic, Nekede 

3. College of Agriculture, Umuagwo, (now University of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, Umuagwo)

4.The Aluminum Extrusion Industry,  Ikeduru.

5. Paper Packaging Industry located at Owerre-Ebiri, Orlu;

6. Sacs Hercules Motorcycle Plant located at Naze in Owerri North;

7. Clay Industries located at Ezinnachi and Amuro, Okigwe;

8. Nsu Tiles and Ceramics Industry loacted at Ezeoke, Ehime Mbano. 

9. Concorde Hotel, Owerri.

10. Aluminum Smelter Plant in Inyishi.

11. International Glass Industry Aba. 

12. Modern Standard Shoe Industry Owerri.

13. Imo Modern Poultry Avutu, Obowo.

14. Golden Chicken Poultry farm, Ukwa.

15. Begedoff Beer Umuahia.

16. Imo Hotels.

17. Aluminum Extrusion Industry Ikeduru. 

18. Resin Paint Factory Mbaise.

19. Mega power stations at Amaraku and Izombe.

20. Progress Bank.

21. IBC Television Channel59 now Orient FM & TV. 

22. Oguta Lake Motels.

23. Abadaba Lake Resorts.

24. Central Stadium Owerri (Dan Anyiam). 

25. International Glass Industry Aba.

26. Imo modern Sulo Waste Management System.

27. Developed the New Owerri Capital territory and built major roads that are still use in present Imo, Abia and Ebonyi. 

28. The Osisioma Industrial Estate,

29. World Bank Housing Estate Osisioma, 

30. Ariaria Market Aba, 

31. Eziukwu Market,

32. Ekeoha Shopping Complex,

33. Enyimba Hotel Complex,

34. Metallurgical Complex 

These and more projects of Dee Sam really put smiles on the face of the people and employed numerous youths across the state . Sam Mbakwe was a prayer answered because his coming was at a time when the pains of military dictatorship was almost unbearable. Dee Sam Mbakwe came as a redeemer and wiped the tears from Imo people’s eyes. He took the whole Imo State as his own constituency. It is in the light of his outstanding performance that he carved a niche for himself in the history books of Imo State. Although, he is no more, his sterling legacies lives on in the hearts of Imo people and left his footprints on the sands of time. Imo State will ever remain grateful to him. Even generations yet unborn will sing his praises for the great and selfless services he rendered to Imolites. His memory will remain evergreen in the hearts of Imolites.

Since Dee Sam Mbakwe left the stage, Imo State has been struggling to get another SAMUEL, a man who will serve selflessly and keep to his words. Virtually all the governors that reigned after Dee Sam did not meet the expectations of the people. They merely massaged the sufferings of Imolites instead of alleviating them. Imolites have been praying for the “reincarnation” of Dee Sam Mbakwe to continue with his laudable projects. Imolites have been praying for a man who can step into the huge shoes Dee Sam left behind. As the search continues, many well-meaning sons of Imo State have been pointing towards Senator SAMUEL Anyanwu, popularly called Samdaddy as another Samuel in the “order” of Sam Mbakwe.  Many surveys have projected him as a good man with overflowing integrity capable of defeating the incumbent governor. They also see him as a man who has the capacity to wipe the tears of Imolites as Dee Sam Mbakwe did. This survey might not be unconnected with his leadership qualities and numerous landmark achievements when he was Executive Chairman of Ikeduru LGA, two term member of Imo State House of Assembly and Distinguished Senator for Owerri Zone. As Chairman of Ikeduru, Samdaddy transformed the LGA and made his people proud that earned him the sobriquet, “ACTION CHAIRMAN”. His commitmen to good governance is legendary and this earned him a PROMOTION by Ikeduru people to the Imo State House of Assembly where he made his marks in people oriented legislations, representation and oversight. He made sound contributions on the floor of the House which kept the government of the day on its toes. 

The election of Samdaddy to the Senate in 2015 did not come to the people by surprise because of his outstanding performance as a member of Imo State House of Assembly. Infact, Samdaddy’s elevation from House of Assembly to the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria apart from being the first time by any Imo born politician,  is also a testimony that good work pays. As a Senator Samuel Anyanwu attracted many road projects and jobs to his constituency. He sponsored many bills and motions which helped to checkmate the executive. Samdaddy was a legislator per excellence. A man who moved a motion for the impeachment of President Buhari at a time his other colleagues hardly aired  their views on national issues.

Out of his desire to clean the rot of bad leadership in Imo State, Samdaddy contested the 2019 governorship primary election of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) but enemies of Imo frustrated his plans by foisting an unpopular candidate by crooked means on the party. This sabotage led to the enthronement of the current APC government in the state. It wouldn’t have been so if Senator Samuel Anyanwu was not rigged out in the 2019 primary election of PDP.

As a staunch member of Imo PDP, he helped to keep the party alive and strong despite the machinations of his political enemies to ostracize him. Senator Samuel Anyanwu is a man who every member of PDP knows his capacity and can relate with him. His uncommon humility and integrity endeared him to members of PDP in Imo State, Southeast and Nigeria when they unanimously elected National Secretary during the last National Convention of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. This is sign that the party acknowledges the  leadership qualities of Samdaddy. As National Secretary of PDP, Samdaddy has shown capacity by putting machinery in motion to revive the party at all levels for electoral victory.  He has brought back disgruntled members to the party in Imo State and beyond. 

There have been speculations that Senator Samdaddy will contest the governorship seat of Imo in the next election. Although, he hasn’t declared formally but there is a general feeling that Imolites are anticipating his entry into the race with calls from different quarters  for Samuel Anyanwu to throw his hat into the goveenorship ring. This might not be unconnected to his sterling qualities and achievements as Council Chairman, State Legislator, Senator and currently, National Scribe of his party. Samuel Mbakwe and Samuel Anyanwu have striking resemblance, characteristics and personality. It’s beyond being namesakes.  Both of them represent what “SAMUEL” stands for; which is a prayer answered and promise kept based on their antecedents.

As Imolites waits with bated breath, we pray God to touch Senator SAMUEL Anyanwu to declare officially for the governorship seat of Imo to enable him step into the shoes of the late SAMUEL Mbakwe and continue with his leadership of sincerity and development. Imolites will never rest until another SAMUEL is born in Imo State. Until men like Senator Samuel Anyanwu who represents good governance and credibility ascends the throne, Imolites will continue to cry for the return of SAM MBAKWE. May another Samuel rise “in the order of Mbakwe” and massively transform Imo as Mbakwe did. History beckons as Imolites continue to pray for Senator Samuel Anyanwu (Samdaddy) to bow to the yearnings of Imolites.

May Imo’s new SAMUEL arise soon and deliver his people.

The time is NOW!

Ik Ogbonna, fcai, anipr, is an Owerri based Journalist and PR Practitioner. 



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