Military Officer, Medical Doctor
Davidson Imimo David Otiotio was a fine Army Officer, Medical Doctor and a Poet par excellence. In the Nigeria civil war of 1967 to 1969, he fought in the war Frontlines for the Federal Government alongside with the dreaded Brigadier-General Benjamin Adekunkle to defeat the Biafra side.
Who Was Davidson Imimo David Otiotio?
Davidson Imimo David Otiotio was from Bassambiri community in Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa state. In 1968, he was a soldier boy who fought for the federal side during the Nigeria/Biafra civil war. He saw it all in the civil war from 1968 to 1969 as he was in the Frontlines. The likes of late Colonel David Akono, and late Navy Captain Ekeopre Beredugo were his contemporaries. He gallantly fought alongside with top brass army officers to liberate Imo, Aba, Port Harcourt and many other cities for the Nigeria side.
After the civil war, brilliant David Otiotio bagged a Medical degree from the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, Zaria .
He worked tirelessly for the development of the Medical profession and civil service of old Rivers and Bayelsa state.
Subsequently, He retired meritoriously in 2011. In the 80s. he also published some awesome poems for the Nigerian Tide Newspaper of old Rivers state and many other local tabloids. He was a man of principle, and contentment.
In his last days, he became a staunched member of the Anglican faith but not a religious bigot. Army Captain (Dr.) Davidson Imimo David Otiotio (Rtd) passed on 26th June, 2020 after a brief illness at the age of 69.
Birth and Parents
David Otiotiowas born on the 22 September, 1951 in Nembe-bassambiri to predeceased father Elder Inabuoselekuma David Otiotio and mother was late Madam Mabel Fawarinengigha Muna all from Nembe-Bassambiri in Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa state.
According to family narrations, Davidson Otiotio proved to be a very precocious child early in life. He was full of questions, and quick to volunteer solutions to every day challenges.
Not surprisingly, he obtained his first School Leaving Certificate Examination with credit in 1963, pass out form the first country Council School of its kind in Bassambiri, Nembe.
His brilliance was noticeable even at that impressionable age. Rather than exhaust the eight years required to finish school, Davidson covered the syllabus in a space of six years.
He traversed five classes in three years between 1961 and 1963.
At Nigerian Military School
At the teenage age of 14, he was fascinated about the Nigeria military.
1966, the year of the first military coup in Nigeria, he enrolled at the Nigerian Military School, NMS, Zaria sometime in January 1966.
Following the Military coup d’état of July 1966, he was moved to Government Secondary School, GSS, Afikpo (now in Ebonyi State), by the Eastern Command of the Nigerian Army. At the new school, he was selected for an accelerated four-year WASC programme, having done exceptionally well in the Class 1 end of year examination.
After the Nigeria civil war in 1969, he returned to Nigerian Military School, NMS, Zaria and concluded his secondary education in 1971. Nonetheless, he won outstanding academic prizes in 1969 and 1970.
Unassuming Davidson Imimo David Otiotio, passed the West Africa School Certificate examination with a Division One distinction.
At Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria
With his feat in the WASC, in 1972 he was selected by the Nigerian Army as one of the Six (6) pioneer students from the NMS to earn a placement at the Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, Zaria, to study Medicine.
He was an enigma, while still at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Davidson Otiotio successfully combined his academic work as a Medical student from semester to semester, alongside his Army Officer-Cadet Training at the Nigerian Defense Academy, NDA.
Successfully, he graduated as a qualified Medical Doctor in 1978, and was duly deployed to serve in the Military hospital, First at Yaba, Lagos, and later in Port Harcourt. He voluntarily retired from the army as a Captain in 1980.
Subsequently, as a medical physician Dr. Davidson Otiotio earned a certificate in Health Planning and Management from the University of Ilorin, 1988, and also in 2004 undertook a short course in Advanced Management at ASCON, Badagry.
The highlights of Dr. Davidson Otiotio life was in the military. In 1968, as a boy soldier, he followed the Nigerian federal troops around strategic bases.
At age 16, he was in the war frontlines. Even so, he trained recruits for the 19 Battalion, Nigerian Army, at Twon Brass, with two of his contemporaries from the Nigerian Military School, Zaria, were namely Colonel David Akono of blessed memory, and retired Navy Captain Ekeopre Beredugo.
Davidosn Otiotio was such an exceptional young soldier that, before long, he became the official orderly to one of the civil war’s most notorious combatants on the federal side, Brigadier-General Benjamin Adekunle, popularly known as Black Scorpion.
In that capacity, he saw action at the war front, and was a primary witness to the capture of Aba and surrounding towns on September 4, 1968 by the Nigerian federal troops. In this war he remains a reliable source of information. Though, his assertions about the war were not documented for reference, but he did due diligence in telling the whole truth of what happened to his medical colleagues and others who cared to listen. Indeed, he was an un-celebrated war historian.
As told earlier, he was a dutiful medical physician of repute. After his retirement as a non-combatant officers in 1980, he had a stint in private medical clinics till 1988 in Rivers state.
Thereafter, on 1 July, 1989 he joined the Rivers State Civil Service as a Senior Medical Officer I (Rivers state Health Management Board). He worked at several medical outfits in the old Rivers state and then transferred his service to Bayelsa state in 1996 as his home-state was created.
Davidson Imimio David Otiotio grew through the ranks in the medical cadre of Bayelsa state.
In 2011 thereabout he retired meritoriously as a Chief Medical Officer at grade level 17 but he was not fulfilled. He so desired, to be appointed Permanent Secretary in the civil service of Bayelsa state as he was qualified and good in the job administratively but the government at the time never did.
Besides, this disappointment, he still offered post retirement services to the Bayelsa state government. He worked at the Diete Koki Memorial Hospital Opolo and the Niger Delta Teaching Hospital Okolobiri til his death in 2020.
It’s worthy to state herein, he was singled out for honorable recognition in the Commissioner for Health’s highest merit award series, 1998-1999, for his remarkable dedication to duty.
Davidson Otiotio was obsessed with history books and had a long-standing passion for creative literature. His medium for self-expression was poetry, and his interest was encouraged when some of his poems were published in the Mariner, journal of the Association of Nigerian Authors, ANA, Bayelsa State chapter. He has also published a few other poems in local newspapers.
The school uniform That stand along the road And collecting the Nigeria images Into the offering bags and Said ‘it’s my head muster that Authorized’ But it’s for the colours in their lives And for their trees and said ‘it’s my turn, it’s my turn’ ‘I must collect it, I must collect it’ The school uniform That stands along the road Are you a tax collector? Sun and moon, you are On the track. The school uniform I saw the Nigerian Images open their mouth For evil and it’s for you. Their eyes are full of waters And is gone to the sky, the cloud Like the Israelite were in Egypt, And that has become a Stone for you.
Davidson Imimio David Otiotio was a polygamist. He had two wives and four children in his lifetime. He was a practical Christian with the Anglican faith but sometimes he did feature with the Baptist Church activities. In totality, he was benevolence in the things of God with truth.
- 142 Circular Road Elekahia Housing Estate, Port Harcourt Rivers state (His personal property}
When He Died?
Davidson Imimio David Otiotio took ill briefly during when the world was ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. He was admitted at Tobis Hospital Agudama-Yenagoa Bayelsa State and sadly died on the 26th June 2020 due to natural causes but not COVID-19. On 12 September, 2020 he was interred at his hometown Bassambiri-Nembe.
Late Captain Davidson Imimio David Otiotio (MD) shall be greatly missed for his unending histories/narrations of the civil war and most especially his uncanny kindness to meet peoples’ needs.