Hon. Maria Ude Nwachi, popularly known as Afikpo Chic, Best Chic Ever Liveth, is the honourable member representing Afikpo North East Constituency in Ebonyi state house of Assembly. She won her election under PPA and is the the only minority in her house of assembly, the rest are in PDP. Hon. Nwachi, We meet again. I interviewed you when you were about to debut Afikpo Chic Blog, on June 1 2014, then you were not yet an honourable member and I never even envisioned the scenario as you have never mentioned any interest in politics since I have been interacting with you for many years now. In all, congratulations for achieving such a feat. Then in 2016, I interviewed you when there was a smear on you piloted by some at Radio Biafra. It’s dejavu again, it seems they have intensified their efforts this time around, in making sure they spread as much smear on your person as possible.
Q: I first heard about Nnamdi Kanu of Radio Biafra through your wall, and Ndi Igbo page, in fact, many I know became his fan because the manner you promoted him. What went wrong?
A: I started Igbo and Biafra awareness and consciousness in FB Nigeria in 2009, as Nigerians were just discovering FB. Many of his followers heard about him through me. In those days, the only place all Igbos gathered was on Ndi Igbo page, a page I own, and that was were many of his followers heard of him via. JOK and many others were in Igboville the day Nnamdi Kanu showed up in FB through Igboville (A closed Igbo FB Group). Then Igbovile was the home of every Igbo power-brain on net. It was the first time almost all of us were seeing him. He spoke very crudely but there was something about him that made me know that what is in him is GREAT. In in the hey days of Igboville, everyone conducted themselves with utmost civility, anything short of that will earn you outright disdain and dismissal. Others dismissed him but I did not, then I used flirtatious and love talks to calm him down and got him to argue intelligently without abusive words and from there we became 5 and 6. I am the person that told him to use his current name NNAMDI KANU, as it was much simpler and more igbotic, he became Nnamdi Kanu the same day I made the suggestion. I am the one that gave him his major promos when he just started Radio Biafra. A powerful orator, a radio god, if he were in the USA, where they appreciate talk radio, where his Disc Jokey radio talent is invaluable, he would be one of the highest paid entertainers on earth, that is how good he is. His oratoy skills is not in doupt. I promoted Nnamdi and Radio Biafra passionately and endless using my many FB platforms and paying heavily to boost any post on him and his outfits.
But something happened, verbal abuses his followers where applying was just too much for me to bear, no matter how tiny the disagreement, they will call you names that I cannot even say here please, unprintable names. I made this known to Nnamdi that I do not like the excessive insults and verbal abominations they are practisim in Radio Biafra, when nothing changed but rather escalated, I withrew to myself. I never attacked them. I just was no longer promoting them.
When the insults just got too much, I made a post advsing they tone down insults and tread a bit more carefully. All hell broke loose and I was being attacked left and right, called every name in book. Lambasted, defamed, maligned, verbally lashed to stupor by Radio Biafrans.
This is an example of what the manner they abuse people:
[Dennis Ade Nwokeoma Ugwuzor … (Name removed) people like you will face death sentence when Biafra comes ewu Hausa].
[Donsmart Unah Strive: We Need Sanity In Biafra-land! We Will Soon Pull Afikpo Chic Down!]
[Peter Amadi: Chimalu, You are a wasted sperm, a he goat, if only your parents used condom, you would not be here, but when we get Biafra all you Igbo bastard sons of Fulanis men will be killed off]
Q: There are people attacking the style of Radio Biafra and Nnamdi Kanu, they do hardly go after them, I have yet to know your exact offence to them and none of them has given me a definite answer, the question now is why you?
A: Well, they see me as an easy target, someone they know will never bandy words with them. Those that attack them head on, they run from. If you ask any of them what my offense is, they can’t give you a definite answer because there is none. Their major beef with me is Igboist group. Igboist is the largest Igbo only group online in the world, It is very influential, active and popular. I am the founder and funder. Verbally abusing others which is their major trademark is not allowed there. No matter who you are, you will be banned, if you insult and verbally humiliate others there. I do not give them the breathing space to practice that art there and so I must be anti Biafra in their mind. You know, I am not seeking cheap popularity. And In the process of being honest and not chasing popularity, you are at times going to be at odds with your audience, and they will both hate you and love you for it. I will not exchange my dignity and personal integrity for popularity. If popularity is my goal, if being loved by Radio Biafrans is my goal, I will simply pretend I love the insults they dish out to people, and then they will be hailing me and going gaga over me. I DO NOT NEED THAT. My spirit will not even me allow me to pretend in such manner.
Q: During the 2016 smear against you, they went back to your time in the USA to dig out things on you, this time they are spreading a video, and they are have made fresh allegations, one of which that you arrange girls for politicians and other prominent men.
A: You see, I call these people ANTI IGBO TOUTS. Why would any one who truly loves Igbo make up lies against another Igbo, just to see that person pulled down. This is the height of anti Igbo activity. Then tomorrow you want me to believe in your brand of Biafra which is hate-filled. They have gone beyond releasing my past and now bearing false witness against my person. Everything they claim I am doing in Nigeria is FALSE. My happiness is that whatever one does is not with spirits. If there is anything I am doing illegally or wrong in this country, I am doing them with someone, some people, and it’s those persons that would even expose me, not my enemies, those I am doing it with.
Since I returned to Nigeria, all I have done is media related and my image making, which leaves me no room for much. In my image making, photography takes 40 % of the packaging, I take the photos myself, edit the photos myself and, manage their Facebook and other social media accounts, do every other duties necessary for to give my clients good results. Where on earth will I even get the energy and time for clandestine activities? Is that thing even gonna pay me more than my media work, which pays quite okay? Plus the fact that it is also a passion. The type of image making I do is practiced only by me in this whole country. Today, I do a lot of training for social media aides on how to handle their principals’ image online, and and I also offer training on Image making centered photography, all over the country. Mind you I am managing Facebook walls for individuals and companies too, not to talk of all the online groups I manage, with the help of workers. No time for rubbish, my brother, no time.
My clients are Governors, and other prominent men, but my brother, I do not interact with them outside the duty I am doing which is to take their photographs; manage their Facebook walls and do other image packaging for them. When you see me working, I am working, not there for fancy, not there for show, I am doing my job and that is that. I take anything I do seriously and will work like a horse to make sure I achieve great results for a client. My communications with them is purely for the purpose of what I do for them. I have been in the image making profession since 2010 here in Nigeria.
As for girls, I do not know any girls here in Nigeria. I am always working and hardly socialize. And quite frankly do not even have a single girlfriend here. The people I know are on Facebook and I don’t chat at all. We meet on my wall and on Igboist and I catch my fun. I do not chat, as it distracts me from work. Even if I gift you with mula or some other gift, man or woman, if you inbox me a thank you, i will simply, thank you back and end the conversation. As anything less will distract me from my many duties online.
On the video from USA they are bringing out. Any video you see of me from the USA is either a radio or TV show. It was not made as some kind of secret thing. If the smear merchants are not adding anything to the video, then what you are seeing is a very young me, a juvenile talking trash and funning, in the days of yore. Everything in my past was by design. Without my past errors, goods, mistakes, youthful indiscretions and what have you, I would not be the Maria Ude I am today. My past is a total sum of me. It is what has grown me to the person I am so proud of today. I know right from wrong in clear form. My consciousness has expanded beyond belief thanks to my vast experiences in life. It has built me to the resolute, consistent person of unshakable integrity that I am today. And because I have seen high life, luxury, too much mula and decadence, I do not attach meaning to materialism of any type. As it is all pure vanity to me now. My mission in life now is to serve, serve humanity selflessly. That is my major aim on this earth today. I am 47, I have done enough excess guy, worn enough couture clothes and shoes, done this, done that; wrote the book. Now I just wanna be a vessel that will bring smiles and succor to others. That is it.
Q: How about the financial allegations they claim happened here in Nigeria?
A: Pure false. Anti-Igbo touts, Igbo haters, bearing false witness against their own. That is all.
Q: They claimed you were deported from the USA, please tell the whole world, where you ever deported from the USA?
A: I was never deported from the USA. Anything that has to do with the civilized world is a matter of public record. Lying about such is of no use. So I can never lie about something that even a 2 year old can easily confirm is a lie. I do not even know why anyone should be mocked for being deported, if they are deported to their own country does that also mean deported from earth? If one is deported to their land, let them make something of themselves in their land, it is not a curse.
And I will always be grateful to AMERICA. While there, I learned photography, online news dissemination, I owned a news site, Image making, started it with a Governor in Florida,USA in 2002, Fashion designing, owned a high end fashion store, in Worth Ave, FL, Photo editing, I was editing images for major fashion magazines. I was in to music, had an album. I learned so many skills that today no matter where I am I will never go hungry or get bored in life, I will always have something to offer that is unique, something no one else would know how to do except me. America laid those foundations for me.
Q: You a quite political heavy weight in your state, that cannot be ignored, you are planning on going higher now, don’t you think the attacks also have political under tones?
A: LOL Well these attacks by Radio Biafrans started before I went into politics, but it is just natural for those that feel threatened by me politically to be enjoying the attacks and even fueling it if they know how. But the deal is this; politics is a huge burden for me, it is a call to service. Going by my today, I will be much richer if I was not if I am not in politics. And I will have my freedom back. I spend every penny I make doing projects in my town of Afikpo every penny, literary. I have always done things for my town and beyond, but being elected now makes me feel like I must bend over backwards and do what must be done to make life easier for my people and others. I am not having a jamboree, if for any reason I am not in politics, I will have more freedom back which I have lost in many ways. I will also have less of burden, financially and otherwise. I am practicing pure selfless politics where I put others before myself. The higher I even go, the more extreme it will get. Since my aim is not to enrich myself, grab power, oppress others, to dress rich and gallivant, then what exactly will be my loss if I am not in politics?
Q: Being a minority in your Assembly, how do you deal with the situation?
A: Things could have even been worse for me in the state of assembly being that I am the only minority in the house, but luckily my Governor, Engr. David Nweze Umahi, carries me along, to the dismay of many. He is a man that appreciates talents and wants to even help improve the talent. He loves hard work, dedication and talent, and he sees that in me. He has been very supportive of me, in all ramifications. My speaker also does his best t indulge me, though he yells at me a lot lol. My colleagues are doing their best to tolerate me, it’s not easy for them, but they are trying haha.
Q: What do you mean by losing your freedom as a politician?
A: My brother, I have lost a lot of my freedom. Even my main job and passion which is photography is threatened as my colleagues feels I am insulting them when I am doing my photography work. I can no longer do most things I love, I am living a much more guided life now, the fear of my manager calling me on the phone is the start of wisdom, I do not wanna do anything he will scream at me for. I do not want to offend my speaker, my Governor, my colleagues. I am childlike by nature and loves to be free to catch as much fun as I want. I am a loner, a chronic one, I work all the time, but whenever I am out and not working, I wanna raise hell, laugh hard, dance hard and do fun crazy stuff with people around me. But now I have to curtail much of my enthusiasm so I don’t break the rule of my state house of Assembly. I am trying my best to conform hahaha, my damnedest, every day. It is not easy. I have thought of quitting politics at times, but when I think of how I came in politics, I will just tell my self to sacrifice whatever comfort I have to, and serve, and serve and serve and maybe I will one day make an impact that will be go beyond the ordinary and change lives above and beyond. Afikpo people started a silent revolution in this nation by electing em masse, I, a person that had zero political structure, no god father, no nothing. There is a reason the universe allowed such to happen and that reason must be fulfilled. I must sacrifice all self-gratifications for that fulfillment.
Q: You have been attacked heavily by Anti Rochas elements who feel you should have not be associating with Governor Owelle Rochas, I am wondering if they are not also fueling the heavy smear on you.
A: You know, obodo adighi mma bu uru ndi nze. Again it is natural that when a target is under an attack, it does not matter who starts it, others who do not like that target or feels threatened by that target, will naturally join and fuel it. That is as natural as breathing. That is human nature. And so I am okay with it. I must keep on keeping. My own part is to always do what is right and leave the rest to master of the universe.
Q: What do you have to say to those who love and appreciate you, your fans that care about you?
A: I cannot thank you enough, I see your messages of encouragement, one day I will post many of them for all to gather strength from. Your powerful encouraging words are some of the reasons I can never give up, never. And I tell you all this, I will continue playing my brand of politics which is others before self. I will never disappoint you all. I must tell you this IGBOS love themselves. We support and love each other. Do you know an Igbo man I have never met, a member of Ndi Igbo page, in its heydays, wired 5 million Naira to me as a thank you for a post I made pleading with Igbos to come home and develop our land. He left his base in Maidugiri after reading that post, and a few months later, Boko hit and devastated many Igbo families and businesses. In appreciation, he inboxed admins and sent us the heavy mula. And now, most of our programs on Igboist are sponsored by fellow Igbos. I cannot scream for help and not find an Igboist come rushing to my aide, be it financially or otherwise. Do not use what a few of my misguided brothers and sisters doing in this case to form judgement. Igbos love one another. Minority cannot form majority; no matter how loud they are. Love will always win.
Below are just a few of them:
Chioma Amaefu (www.facebook.com/camaefu1)
If I open my Facebook is your picture ,write ups or talks about you, why hide ma, come out and be the saviour NIGERIA Need. This is the change I want, a woman president will not fit you any less ma. Empower women and let them have ground too in politics ma. Teach them how to give to others too not only collecting Maria Ude Nwachi (respect) admire your kind wish to see more of your kind ma,it will sure be a better place.
Chinwe Nwokeke [www.facebook.com/chinwe.nwokeke] Dear Ma, I appreciate your humility and sincerity, even with how far you have come yet you are so humble and generous. May the good you have done to people speak for your son Okochi Brandon now and in the future. May he find favor with God and Men, may you never see his end and may genuine love find and stay with you always. I am not popular in Igboist but love to comment on posts when I can. I admire you so much especially because of your tenacity. Keep been kind and may peace and fulfilment be yours always . Please ma, can you try to ignore hurtful posts by enemies that is intended to make you sad ? We all have our pasts and whatever we have done right or wrong is the wealth of experience that has guided us to our true calling today. Hold your head high and move on, you come first. God who is the supreme Judge, did not give up on us, so who is man?
Chioma Cornelia [https://web.facebook.com/chiomyasbefore]
Oh! Do I love this woman? I’m so in love with you. I’ve been a silent follower of your posts and I’ve always admired your courage and kindness. But what I’ve read about you in the past few days have made me to completely fall in love with you. Anyone who thinks digging up such news would tarnish your image must be a fool. In fact, if I’m asked to choose, I’ll choose that young lady I saw in that video. My God! You’re just a natural. No atom of crookedness in you. Only looking at you, one could see everything there is to you. No pretence whatsoever. I really wish to meet you one day and give you a very big hug. Please don’t ever be discouraged. Keep fighting the good fight. Ndi nonyere gi kariri ndi n’emegide gi. I love you and I love you
Chinwe Oranefo [web.facebook.com/MamaOBINNAYA]
I never heard about you Maria but after reading a post and watching a YouTube video meant to use to blackmail you, I fell in love. Wow!!!?????? if he only knows that the post would make some strangers love you???
Eburu Michael [https://web.facebook.com/eburu.michael]
Mama! I just want you to know that I love you and same with thousands and millions of people out there! Whom even without blood or physical contact you have become an inspiration and a reason for survival Mummy am pretty sure that right now you will be mentally or psychologically drained, seriously I don’t have words that will suit the current reality but I urge you to reflect back on some, if not all, the inspirational speeches you have always given and maybe reflect on them. Apply them the same way you would want us to. If not for anything else! Ma! Your the only Nigerian politician with absolute, true fans! We’re looking up to you, please don’t let this situation weigh you down more than it should. God bless your vision, mission and sincerity of purpose!. Amen.
Kozzy Chizzy [www.facebook.com/nwokedi.kosisochukwu1]
Ignore all the lies they are cooking up against u OK. May God continue to make u a shining star. Happy new week Afikpo Chic
JP Aguinam [www.facebook.com/papalexcel]
Don’t worry yourself over Nothing. Every disappointment is a blessing. I never fancy your things but after watching the Video on Elombah. I fall in love with your things the more. Look at young pretty Orphan in her 20’s without much formal education. Made her way to the USA. Look at how smart and intelligent she was. Be it for Good or Bad, NY times carried your news. Now you decided to channel the smartness into politics, It is a blessing to Igboland. We Igbos are proud of you too. Dont be discouraged. Dont even try to make yourself clear. It is a blessing to you. WE GOOD IGBOS ARE PROUD TO HAVE A SMART LADY LIKE YOU AS DAUGHTER. But no be today you begin see money. No wonder money never move you rather you channel them to helping people.
Florence Fly-flow Emmanuel [www.facebook.com/florence.emmanuel]
Good evening ma’am. Iam from kogi state. I really admire your humility and humanitarian gestures. This is something I really want to do. God bless you. And I know this too shall pass away. Keep being yourself, don’t let anybody deter you. My love for you is enormous
Henry Okolie [www.facebook.com/henry.ook]
Please my sister don’t mind who ever that want to paint you black ,they are not better than you ,as far am concern your the best thing that happened to ndigbo, your group ad unite ndigbo and give them voice to talk ,unite family that got missing for the pass 10yrs ,till they meet on ndigbo group ,you have done a great work and put smile to the face of so many families ,I pray the good lord give you strength and bless you the more ,I also pray and cover you with the blood of lord Jesus Christ ,please don’t stop your good work oh I beg you in the name of God.
Uzodinma Madubuike [www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100010250382001]
My dear,I used to like you before. But after seeing people’s effort to bring you down and after reading what you said,my likeness for you graduated in love.I LOVE YOU.keep waxing strong cos no one can pull you down.
Q: What do you say to those smearing you?
A: A billion of you cannot succeed in in pulling me down. Only I can pull myself down. You can try every trick in the book and it can never work. You have now graduated to bearing false witness against me and cooking up pure lies to bring me down. A lie may take care of the present, but it has no future. And: Neither shall thou bear false witness against thy neighbor. That is all I have to say to you.
Q: How do you do it? How do you handle the smear jobs?
A: Hahaha. I have been leading Igbos online since 2009. Anyone that can successfully lead Igbos and bring them under one roof and lead them successfully can even run a country, any country. Because we are republicans by nature. Today, I am directing the largest Igbo gathering online on earth and doing it effortlessly and successfully, with the help of the workers. If I can do this, my dear, I am ready for any task. I am ready for challenges. How do I do handle the smear jobs? I cannot afford to allow anything distract me. I cannot afford NOT to have a strong skin, I must; as I have no other option. I am an orphan; also a political orphan, no godfather, ETC. If I had an option, it might be a different story lol. So I must be strong and just keep on doing the right thing and trucking on.
I will end with my this:
A CREED: I will continue to serve myself last. My comfort will always take a backseat for the comfort of the whole. I will prove to the world that a Nigerian politician can put the interest of others above her own. So help me, God!
Ugwu: Thank you, Hon. Afikpo Chic, for the interview.
Nwachi: My pleasure, thank you, sir.
BY By Michael Ugwu.