Former Governor of Cross River State, Senator Liyel Imoke, on Saturday revealed why Brigadier General Solomon Giwa-Amu quit his job as Aide de Camp (ADC) to former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
Speaking at the 10th Year Anniversary of Giwa-Amu’s death in a fatal motor accident, Imoke who was a special assistant to President Obasanjo disclosed that the former ADC said he wanted to return to his core duty as a military professional.
He said the late former ADC was concerned about his career and consequently decided to leave Obasanjo at the end of his first term as president in 2003.
Imoke, who was chairman of the occasion, was speaking on Giwa-Amu’s attributes as someone who wanted to do his best for the country, noting that even though he lived a short life, Giwa-Amu was being remembered for his good deeds to humanity.
The former governor said: “I believe that even though his life was short, that zeal, that energy, that commitment to delivering a better country, is something that still remains with us.
“And so, for an event like this, what exactly do we want to take away from here? What are the things that we ought to remember?
“If Solo was alive today, he probably would have been a frustrated Nigerian. He would be so concerned, so obsessed, so dejected because he would have been giving his all as he always does. Maybe that his all that he would have given may just not have been good enough.
“I remember a discussion I had with him just before he left the office of ADC to the president. Now, here’s a guy who is ADC to the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. One day, he told me ‘am quitting this job.’ He said after the president’s first tenure.
“I was like, ‘are you kidding me? How can you quit as ADC? Did Obj say you cannot continue to work with him?” He said no.
“I said ‘you are leaving? Why? He said ‘am a professional. My career goes beyond this appointment. I believe that having committed four years in the service of the president as ADC, the time has come for me to move on.”
“I don’t know how many people will take that decision.”
Imoke said even though being an ADC to the president required a lot of work, it also creates a lot of opportunities for the occupant, wondering why anyone would want to leave that job.
According to the former governor, Giwa-Amu was not just the ADC to the former president, he was also a close adviser to him.
Imoke noted that Giwa-Amu’s life was worth celebrating and Saturday’s event was an apt demonstration of that.
He said the anniversary was an opportunity to celebrate and reflect on the life of Giwa-Amu who later became Nigeria’s Defence Attache to New York as well as the Director of Army Public Relations.
He added: “This event gives us an opportunity not just to reflect on the life of this great Nigerian, this exceptional officer and gentleman, this exceptional patriot, it also gives us an opportunity to really reflect on 10 years since Solo passed on.
“In 2006, I resigned as minister of Power and Steel to contest for the office of governor in Cross River state and I said to Solomon, we had started the NIPP project, if someone had told me that 12 years later we will still be where we were in 2006 with a population that continued to grow, it is difficult to imagine.
“If Solo was alive today, I don’t know what the discussion will be with all the frustration.”
Imoke called for the sharing of the best thoughts about the nation as people celebrated the life of the former ADC.
Also speaking at the ceremony, the Chief of Army Staff, General Tukur Buratai, noted the philanthropism of the Giwa-Amu Foundation led by the former ADC’s wife, Judith, promising that the Nigerian Army would cooperate more closely with it this year.
Represented by Major General Nuhu Angbazo, the Army boss revealed that Giwa-Amu’s has become a reference point for officers during leadership training.
“He has lived a complete life and the Nigerian Army is very appreciative the service that he has given us,” he stated, pledging that the Army will continue to support the family.