It is pretty difficult to eulogise a man with humble background, a man relatively unknown in the political and economic circles, a man whose parents were not born with either golden or silver spoon. But for a man who spends most of his time and money attending to other peoples problems, a man with passion to serve his people, a man full of compassion for the less-priviledged ones, such person deserves to be honoured by the society.
The legendary Rabindranath Tagore, once wrote: “You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water. And for our personality today, Tagore’s epistle is instructive, apt and most appropriate for a man with burning desire to better the lot of his people.
Kings, they say, are born not made. The likes of HRH Eze Michael Eleto the Ebe IV of Iriebe community in Obio/Akpor is one in the list of such dynamic leaders who have the interest of the common man at heart.
Born on 27th October, 1975 to the family, of late Job Eleto of Rumuoda family Iriebe in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State, young Eze Mike Eleto had his primary education at Community Primary School, Iriebe and Ojims College Rumuji, Rivers State (1988-1993) where he obtained his senior secondary certificate in flying colours.
In 2003 Eze Mike Eleto proceeded to the Rivers State University of Science and Technology, Port Harcourt where he bagged his Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree in Business Management and an Honorary Doctorate degree in the humanities from the Christian University, Ikeja, Lagos.
On community development Eze (Dr) Mike Eleto was the Vice President, Iriebe youths 1998-2001, Vice President Iriebe Youth Movement (2001 to 2003) during which Iriebe community witnessed unprecedented peace and development.
A peace-loving monarch, a father of eight children, this urbane and suave philanthropist is an open minded and open hearted person, who forgives easily and has never been known to keep malice, rather he sees everybody as a friend.
Upon completion of his secondary career in 1993, Eze (Dr) Mike Eleto took appointment in Arizona Oil Limited as a marketer. He later resigned and joined Deutag (Nig) Ltd, an oil servicing company based in Port Harcourt.
As the desire for Golden Fleece was burning in him, Eze (Dr) Mike Chiwuikpe Eleto resigned and joined Saipem (AGG project in Iriebe and later retired to private business life.
Currently, Eze (Dr) Mike Eleto is the CEO/Director of E.E. Nigeria Limited, Akaso, Iriebe with a branch office at Ikot Etiti, Cross Rivers State, Director, Dazzle Bar, a hospitality outfit also based in Iriebe, Port Harcourt and managed by his aimable wife, Lolo Francisca Eleto. He is also the Director, Dazzle Plaza both located opposite Okro market Iriebe.
Lately, Eze (Dr) Mike Eleto’s profile rose rapidly making political bookmakers and kingmakers in his community and indeed Obio/Akpor Local Government Area consider a possible higher traditional office for the man full of human kindness.
Eze Inyeaka (meaning helper of the poor) as he is fondly called has also received several awards and titles to his credit. He is Dike Egimatu 1 of Ahiazu Mbaise, President Akwa/Cross Association 2006 till date and Patron, Cacus Trust Members of Port Harcourt, 2004 till date.
The rotational principle in Iriebe between Rumuoda and Okoroshi villages saw the emergence of Eze Mike Eleto as the most favoured in Rumuoda village after a rigorous selection process through unanimous decision following the demise of late Eze Francis Amadi, the Ebe III of Iriebe.
An opinion leader in the community Chief Charles Eleto and former councilor representing Ward II, Iriebe in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, Hon Francis Eleto in their separate speeches eulogised the sterling qualities of Eze Mike Eleto describing him as an indigene of the community whose pedigree has spoken for him.
They used the occasion to call on the people to rally round him having assessed him as Late Eze Francis Amadi’s deputy where he exhibited high sense of commitment to peace and progress of the community.
They called on him to bring his wealth of experience gathered over the years as member, Eze-in-Council, Vice Chairman, Iriebe Council of Traditional Rulers, and member, Iriebe ruling council for over 20 years to bear in taking Iriebe to the next level.
The ability to advance the course of humanity and display ingenuity does not come through a run-on-mill approach to governance. It has to do with pragmatism, mixed with solid leadership quality in Iriebe community. Eze (Dr) Mike Eleto displays all the characteristics of a philosopher King, Plato. No wonder during his acceptance speech, he paid tribute to Late Eze Francis Amadi whom he described as an icon and visionary leader.
He passionately appealed to all the people in Iriebe to come together, work in synergy with him and that with their collective effort, and by the grace God, he will transform Iriebe community.
Eze (Dr) Mike Eleto also carries his philosophy beyond abstract ideas by implementing concrete socio economic policies and projects for the good of his people as he rolled out his four cardinal objectives aimed at bringing Iriebe community closer to government, to synergies with relevant authorities viz a viz Shell, NDDC and Rivers State Government in areas of good road net work, good drinking water, transformers, standard market, a government secondary school and to unite Iriebe with its neighbouring communities.
When Iriebe community rolled not their drums last Thursday 18th August 2011 both indigenes and non indigenes pledged their loyalty and unalloyed support to their king as he mounts the leadership of one of the oil bearing communities in Rivers State.