The Mayor of London borough of Enfield, Chief Dr. Kate Anolue has revealed the secret of her upbringing and how it assisted her in the fight against COVID-19 in her constituent here in the United Kingdom (UK).
Anolue in an exclusive interview with the Golden Star Magazine, noted that her life during the Nigerian civil war impacted positively on her present life which enabled her weather the storm of COVID-19.
She noted that the early days of the virus affected her psyche having crossed 70 years, the age group seriously affected by the pandemic, but that she overcame due to the experiences of her youth.
The Nigerian-born Mayor said: “COVID-19 took everybody unawares; nobody prepared for the outcome, however, something has to be done.
“I was disappointed that when it happened, there was an announcement that people over 70 should stay indoors, and regrettably I am one of them; it made me think of how to help my constituency.
“In the first one week, I was stuck indoors and upset with myself. Upset that I was strong and fit and prefer doing activities outdoors rather than indoors.
“However, I still had the opportunity after one week to meet with the leader energetic of the council planning on how to help the community, and I said to myself, I can be part of this.
“The first thing I did was to make a ‘small cake pillow’ which I sent out to my constituency as well as other nearby communities.
“I also sent out messages to my constituents that we have food bank and medications, so I was announcing and sending links on how to contact the taskforce for volunteer who helped us to distribute food and medication.”
According to her, coming from a large family and also being a single mum contributed to her success in life.
“During the Nigeria civil war I had to help my parents look after my siblings; we operated food vendor business popularly known as ‘mamaput’ and I usually take it to the market to make some money.
“I noticed that what I was doing was helping my parents, so it helped me to cope with early widowhood after my husband left me with four kids. I struggled and God helped me to see them through the university.
“So, I think the result of the Nigeria-Biafra civil war was one of the forces that made me to know that I can do it after surviving the civil war with my parents amidst the kwashiorkor, and I said to myself why won’t I survive here where I know I won’t lack food or water and with good friends around me.
“It is usually extremely had for a single mother with four children to cope but I said to myself I don’t want to fail or my children to say because there is no daddy around that is why they didn’t get the right education.
“I also didn’t want it to add to the statistics and look as if single parent cannot bring up their children,” Anorue said.
She urged parents and youths to always believe in themselves, have trust and be positive about themselves and also don’t be followers.
“You can believe in yourself but if you are not positive about yourself, then believing in yourself will not work. I always say ‘yes I can’. Before Obama said ‘yes I can’, I have already said it, and it helped me to achieve what I have achieved,” She added.