By Agber Godwin
Great men are rare and are never born with silver spoon, they skein through life in thick and thin to attain great heights. This saying epitomizes the life of Barrister Michael Aunde Agber.
On September 11th 1959, a young damsel by name Mrs. Ahunghul Agber, ended the long awaited anxiety for a child in the family of Agber Amande. She was barely 17years old when the onerous responsibility of motherhood befell her.
She brought relief and joy to her husband Mr. Godson Agber Amande, whose marriage to his first wife was still childless. So his espousal to this 16years old teenage girl was a break in the yoke of fruitlessness in the family.. The glorious arrival of her new born brought blessings of fertility to the family as the first wife also conceived thereafter and brought forth a baby girl. The father translated the blessing by crystallizing it in the name called AUNDE, which he gave his first son to signify upward climb to success.
The young lad realized the significance of his name with a clear vision and maintained a resolute, determined and focused mind to justify its potentials right from childhood.
He grew up as a dynamic, disciplined and zealous chap. The father who lived in the Republic of Cameroon, then, saw the distinctive qualities of his son and quickly sent him to Nigeria at a tender age to avoid been pampered as the first son and also to allow him grow an independent mind that would sustain his future.
To help cultivate these qualities was under the watchful and no nonsense eyes of his uncle Akase Kenge and industrious hands of Auntie Avenda who did all they could under the prevailing circumstance to raise the young Michael He obeyed them in every respect of life and became a referral beacon of discipline to other children of his age. As a pupil at St. Anns Primary School Adikpo, the young Michael after running errands and helping out in domestic shores, would run to Adikpo market and engage in petty trading, manual work and interpretation to illiterate old Tiv traders who never comprehended English Language to prevent them from been cheated in their businesses
His Aunt Mrs. Avende later relocated to Keffi and she picked the dependable lad along, to assist her in her business over there. The focused young Michael remained as resolute and determined in his desire for Whiteman’s education, and his auntie gave him all her support. He completed his primary education and performed brilliantly in his First School Leaving Certificate (FSLC) in 1972.
By 1973, his zeal to become a priest took him to St. James Junior Seminary Keffii for his secondary education. The school was later moved to Makurdi where he graduated, coming top of the class in WAEC in 19977 in a highly brilliant set that comprised Dr. David Orjime, Prof. Godwin Yina, Rev, Fr. Titus Ashwe, Late Rev Fr. Edwin Oyihi of Oturkpo Diocese and others.
He then proceeded to MUCAST, later called School of Basic Studies Makurdi, where he scored very high grades, and was offered immediate admission at University of Lagos (UNILAG) to study English Language which he turned down.
The following year 1981, he applied for Law at University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID) and was offered admission, the challenge he gallantly took up with zeal and determination. The intellectual colossus he was, he graduated with flying colours with LLB (Hons) in 1983. He proceeded to Nigerian Law School Lagos, and was called to BAR in 1984.
The mandatory NYSC took him to the office of the then Chief of General Staff Maj. Gen. Tunde Idiagbon at Dudan Barracks Lagos, between 1984 and 1985.
After his meritorious service to the fatherland, he returned to Gboko where he practiced at Dooshima Chambers, a legal firm owned by the famous Barrister S. Orkuma.
He later took over the management of the Chambers of S. A. Agenor & Company before joining the services of Benue State Government.
He worked in the office of Civil Litigation where he handled high profile cases on behalf of the state government up to the Supreme Court and won many of them. He worked hard and rose to the rank of a Director of Civil Litigation, and has attained the mandatory retirement age of 60 this September. Retired but not tired, Barrister Michael Aunde Agber has established his own legal firm at High Level Makurdi.
As we roll out drums to celebrate this iconic legal practitioner, let us all wish Barrister Michael Aunde Agber Amande Anger Mansoo a successful career as he joins his colleagues in private legal practice once again.
HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY SIR. AND CONGRATULATIONS TO YOU MY ELDEST BROTHER.
Agber is an Educationist based in Abuja