By Emma Nyema Wonodi
On the evening of 21st Feb, 2019, i received with great awe and surprise, the unpleasant news of the death of Elder Gentle Ibekwe Aaron, who fathered my esteemed friends - Hon Chukwuemeka Aaron, current PDP chairman of Obio/Akpor Lga and Dr Friday Aaron, present CMD of RSUTH.
The strong feelers I got from the deceased's Rukpokwu community and beyond, have left me with lasting memories of the late man as a highly impressionable personage, who was quite witty, friendly, avuncular and fatherly.
It was further revealed that the deceased was a notable political figure, particularly within the Obalga Elder's Circle. For instance, in the build up to the 2015 and 2019 General Elections in Nigeria, papa showed more than a passive interest in politics and in the affairs of his people. He epitomized the very best of political doggedness, steadfastness and gallantry as he, with great enthusiasm, showed avowed commitment to the activities of the PDP political party, counselling many who came in contact with him on the political plane, to remain fearless, resolute and firm in the onerous quest to win the said elections, despite innumerable odds lined up on PDP's political pathway.
This great man of mgbuchi community of Rukpokwu clan, fervently believed that PDP in Rivers State, under the indefatigable leadership of Gov Nyesom Wike, was the proper political vehicle for Rivers people to follow, in order to actualize their dream of a massively transformed State, filled with torrents of people- centered infrastructure.
Of course, papa's vision in this dimension was realized, as Gov Nyesom Wike made Rivers State to become not only the envy of other States but also that of the Nigerian Federal Government.
Aside from the foregoing, papa was a good family man and community leader, who exhibited an extraordinary gentilty, (in synchronism with his English name- Gentle), and also portrayed simplicity of manners, high integrity, honesty and morality anchored on deep Christian values. No wonder the late man was able to raise a wonderful family made up of seasoned personalities with sufficiently radiating candour, integrity and moral rectitude, such as the said Hon Chukwuemeka Aaron, former banker extraordinaire and current PDP chairman Obio/ Akpor, and chairman of all Lga chairmen of PDP in Rivers State, Dr Friday Aaron, distinguished medical consultant, Chief Medical Director, Rivers State University Teaching Hospital, as well as Barr( Miss) Aaron, Dr Precious Aaron, Deacon Aaron, and other accomplished personalities of the Aaron's family.
Though Elder Gentle died before the eventual re- election of our populist Gov Wike in the 2019 Governorship Election, the unalloyed commitment of the deceased to PDP and to the general well- being of his clan never quivered, and palpably " reinvigorates the agonizing memories of many other political heroes/ heroines who stood firm in defence of our dear Rivers State, and in the process, even paid the supreme price during the just concluded 2019 Elections in the State"
The greatest monument that could be erected in memory of Elder Gentle Ibekwe Akador Aaron, is that members of his household in particular, and those he has positively impacted in general, should see to it that the deceased's desires for the unity and rapid development of Rivers State under Gov Nyesom Wike, and his deep Christian values continue to resonate within his family, community, Rivers State, Nigeria and the society at large
Members of Aaron's family should please take solace in the fact that your departed father and scion of your family, shall continue to live on wherever men and women of good will are gathered; his words remain certainly alive and his good deeds shall survive him.
Adieu, our Elder and father as you walk triumphantly into eternity.