Fidelity bank banner Camano banner
To my friend, my mentor and leader; Dr. Kalu Idika Kalu (KIK), as he turns a year older

By Emeka Ugwuonye on 15/10/2014

Views: 5,302


Kalu Idika Kalu’s birthday is actually October 14. I have been trying to get this message across since yesterday, but MTN disappointed at the critical moment, as usual.

I admit it sounds quite imprudent of me to see myself as the friend of KIK. You can understand that point when you realise that KIK was already a Minister of the Nigerian Federation before I finished secondary school. In fact, he was Senior World Bank Economist around the time I was entering secondary school and a Professor of Economics in America even earlier. He went on to become a Minister in four different ministries or departments, including finance, transport, planning, and one more.

It is therefore truly egotistical of me to call myself his friend. But do not assume that KIK is an old man based on the huge age and status gap between him and me. He just happened to have become accomplished very early in his life. He was marked for a unique mission and purpose in life and was a public figure even while he was in his 20s. Also, I would explain the gap a bit differently by reminding you that most of my friends here actually believe I am 15 years older than I really am, which was why I stirred up some confusion last year when I announced that my mother just turned 65.

Apart from being my friend, KIK occupies multiple positions in my life. He is also my mentor and my leader. By mentor, I mean that I am constantly learning from him. Indeed, in my adult life, there are about four scholars or intellectuals who have had direct influence on my intellectual development. They are: (1) Professor David Smith, a former Dean of Harvard Law School, (2) Professor Roberto Unger, Professor of Jurisprudence at Harvard, regarded as the father of the Critical Legal Studies Movement (the “Crit”), a school of jurisprudence to which I belong. These two men supervised my academic work and research as a post-graduate student. Then you have Professor Jeffery Sachs, Professor of Economics at Harvard and one-time Executive Director of the Harvard Institute for International Development (HIID). He took me on Economics electives and later became my boss when I joined the HIID as legal and policy advisor. And finally, but not the least, comes (4) Dr. Kalu Idika Kalu.

While I may refer now to the first three a bit in the past tense, I refer to KIK in the present continuous tense. It is not to my credit that I associate closely with KIK. Rather, it is to KIK’s generosity, nobility and humility that he and I are friends. He is a Nigerian leader that I can trust and vouch for. He is well principled and highly disciplined, and would not allow personal or pecuniary interests to compromise his values. He is a courageous person too and would not hesitate to offend you if hearing the truth offends you. He has, to my knowledge, given up or passed on many opportunities for financial rewards just in order to protect his integrity and sense of justice and fairness.

KIK’s accomplishments involve a long list of credentials. But I just focused on those that affect me personally in this present context. As a testimony to the humility and simplicity of this man, he frequently joins us on Facebook to discuss issues and to comment on our posts and even entertain arguments from anyone who bothers to argue. Yet, I wonder if some of those who argue with him on this medium were really aware of the rare opportunity they have to exchange views directly with such a man. You will not find any other Nigerian with KIK’s standing who would readily make himself available to argue with high school certificate holders without showing any air of superiority. I try to learn this quality from him and I hope God will help me succeed in that.

If you spend an hour with KIK on any subject, you will leave visibly uplifted intellectually and spiritually. He has an inexhaustible list of precedents and best practices he can readily draw from to address whatever the challenge you present to him. He is also a sweet person to socialise with. Just don’t bring in your end-of time argument or some bizarre beliefs in human beings turning into birds. He may not be as patient with you as I have been. He doesn’t suffer fools gladly, I know.

Please join me in wishing my dear friend, mentor and leader a happy birthday, albeit one day in arrears.

•Emeka Ugwuonye, Lawyer and Activist, Group Founder/Principal Administrator of Due Process Advocates (DPA), writes from Lagos. Photo shows Prof. Kalu Idika Kalu.

Source News Express

Posted 15/10/2014 10:18:59 PM

 


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

You may also like...
Tragedy at PDP rally; canon shots kill Deputy...

Special Forces flush out Boko Haram terrorists from...

NAPTIP to adopt whistle-blowing policy to combat human...

7 more PDP governors to join APC

UN to relocate humanitarian coordination centre to Maiduguri...

Buhari warns illegal miners

Girl, 15, flogs 7-year-old brother to death over...

How Seyi Makinde finished off Adelabu, others to...

Delta Guber: PDP, INEC fault APC candidate over...

Benue Govt. flags off international cargo airport

Amnesty boss makes case for repentant militants •Tasks...

Passengers stranded as airlines delay flights due to...

 

Latest News Boko Haram fighters kill 23 soldiers: Security sources Catholic Priest stabbed during mass BREAKING: Bauchi State Finance Commissioner resigns Nigeria deports 4 Ghanaians At least 60 killed in bus collision INEC lists condition to issue Okorocha senator's return certificate Bayelsa Judicial Commission of Inquiry invites Sylva, Lokpobiri, NDDC Boss, other APC chieftains 47,000 applications received for 1,000 teaching positions in Delta State Adeleke’s triumph at Osun Guber Tribunal a victory for democracy — PDP Bauchi Poll: Why election will not hold in Tafawa Balewa LGA — INEC Supplementary Elections: Police restrict vehicular movement in FCT Edo Govt. warns against stigmatisation of Lassa fever survivours

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (461,158 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (410,528 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (346,537 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (297,354 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (261,655 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (236,554 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (222,675 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (204,387 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (192,731 views) 10 cars more expensive than Jets (177,652 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (176,950 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (175,829 views)

 

NLNG call for entries

CBN banner

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (81) Business & Economy (4,095) Business Verdict (60) Columnists (1,007) Complaints & Requests (95) Enterprise & Opportunities (208) Entertainment (598) Features (725) Global Business Monitor (327) ICT Monitor (27) International (3,205) Interview (174) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (153) Maggie's Blog (194) News (44,125) Opinion (1,205) Pidgin (17) Politics (10,303) Religion (961) Sports (1,926) Stock Watch (39) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

 

 

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera