Nebo’s Moment Of Glory
Although it was not the first time a distinguished award was being conferred on him, Nebo however fancied this one from the Business World newspaper very much as, according to him, “this is the first time a newspaper is honouring us for our services”.
He said it was more fascinating because, “I am being honoured as a private citizen, when I am no longer in charge of any Ministry or
Publisher of the newspaper, Mr Ray Echebiri had told guests at the occasion including former Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Prof Mrs Adaku Onwuliri that it was the third time in nine years that the establishment was given such honour.
“We have followed you right from the period you assumed office as the Minister of Power to continue from where others stopped. The manner in which you midwifed the privatization of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), the handling of the issue of workers’ benefits affected by the unbundling of the sector, your efforts to ensure stable power supply in the country among others”, he said.
According to Echebiri, the organization had also looked into records from Nebo’s days as Vice Chancellor of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) as well as Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye-Ekiti, “ to discover you distinguished yourself”.
“It is a rare feat ladies and gentlemen. It is something we would not have wished away in a hurry and in order to remove this from politics, we decided that it will be a time when you must have been through your assignment”, Echebiri added.
Prof Onwuliri had described Nebo as “a star” bestowed on Nigeria by God, saying that his contributions during the immediate past executive council and his commitment to duty was equal to none. Expressing delight for the award, she said that time had come when hard work and diligence should be the watch word of any person desiring success, stressing that Nigerians would always reward dignity in labour.
Prof Nebo according to her was a good example of hard work, adding, “he buries himself in whatever assignment anybody gives to him”. Chairman, South East Nigeria Economic Commission (SENEC), Engr Chris
Okoye said that Nebo has become an epitome of success. He said he had a successful tenure at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, adding that his performance became the tonic that gave him the job as the foremost
Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti. He said: “In Oye-Ekiti, two communities were quarreling over the location of the university thereby making it difficult for actual construction work to start on the permanent site. Nebo was called upon, he went there was calm.
The two communities embraced peace and agreed to a location for the school. This gave way for actual construction at the permanent site of the school. Today, the school is a success story, the foundation built by Nebo has been sustained and the people who are immediate beneficiaries can attest to this fact”.
Okoye said that the likes of Nebo was needed in every facet of the country’s economic life “ to transform it for the betterment of the people”, while wishing him more years of positive contributions to the growth of the country.
Nebo, who felt “flattered” by the encomiums, had attributed the
success of his endeavours to God, stressing that he had always committed to God any undertaking no matter how little.
“Before I took over as Vice Chancellor of the UNN, I consulted God because cultism was already at an alarming level at the University.
Two years before I became the Vice Chancellor, cultists murdered the Chief Security Officer of the University; a year before I became the Vice Chancellor, cultists also murdered the Dean of Pharmaceutical Sciences within the school premises. I took over and declared zero tolerance to cultism and by the grace of God, throughout my tenure; there were no cultism, no workers strike and no unrests. These things happened because I put God first and I have a supportive wife who will always commit me and my assignments to God. I also have wonderful children who play their role in the family”, he said.
Turning to the power sector, Nebo said that vandalism and gas shortage were the greatest problems facing the power sector in Nigeria, regretting that the immediate past administration could not overcome it despite all its efforts.
He noted that the immediate past administration of Goodluck Jonathan made the greatest investment ever in the power sector, stressing that vandalism and gas shortages thwarted the realization of regular power supply.
He said he was hopeful that the country would overcome her power supply challenges with the huge investment so far made, calling on the President Mohammadu Buhari led government to do all in its ability to confront the problem.
He said: “No administration has done more ever on power sector than the immediate past administration of Jonathan. My greatest regret is that we did not win the war against vandalism and gas shortage. If the Buhari administration can win the war against gas shortage and vandalism today, I assure that Nigeria will have constant supply of power because Jonathan made huge investment in the sector”.
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