Elder MBATA,Sam Azuta(Late)

Born January 1, 1931

Eneka, Rivers, Nigeria



Sam Mbata was born in Eneka, one of the major towns in Rivers State, Nigeria. He was the second child and first male of Pa Gabriel and Hannah Mbata; his elder sister is Adeline. He had three younger sisters - Mary, Sunday and Comfort. At the time of his birth, his parents, like most other members of the community were crop farmers. The date of his birth is uncertain since he was born by illiterate parents who didn’t keep any written record at the time of his birth but based on oral history of farm locations and other local incidents, as he grew up, he adopted January 1, 1931 as his birthday. He believes that it could be much earlier than that. At the time of his birth, Nigeria was under the colonial government which had established a school in the community. When he was old enough to enter school, his mother took him there but was told that he needed an English name. Mama Hannah was quite a smart and intelligent woman. She quickly thought of a name for her son, she was Hannah and she had heard somewhere that the name of Hannah’s son in the Bible is Samuel, so she announced to the white men that his son’s baptismal name would be Samuel and from that day, he became Samuel Azuta Mbata and with that, young Samuel was baptised and admitted into the local primary school then known as Eneka Infant School, Eneka. The School had only standards 1- 4 after which any pupil that wanted to continue must transfer to another school that had standard 5.While in the school, Mbata was a member of the school choir. In fact, he led the choir. He also took part in a number of sporting activities. After his standard 4, at the school in Eneka, Mbata was transferred to a school in Port-Harcourt where he completed his primary school education. At the completion of his primary school education, he was admitted at Enitona High School in Port-Harcourt for his secondary school education. This was in 1945. Enitona High School then was a prestigious school that attracted children from all over Nigeria. While at Enitona, the leadership qualities in the young Samuel began to manifest. He was a brilliant student. He worked hard and studied hard and soon began to attract the attention of his principal and teachers who started assigning him small leadership responsibilities which he executed well to their satisfaction. He found himself in leadership positions without his actually working for them. Those leadership roles attracted many students to him. He became quite popular and had many friends. It did not surprise any of his mates and teachers that, at the completion of his secondary school programme in 1950, and obtaining the Cambridge School Certificate, the Principal of the school invited him to teach in the same school. The principal advised him to join the school until he secured a better job. He accepted the offer and became a teacher at Enitona High School, his alma mater. He taught there for about three years and left to join the Bank of British West Africa (BBWA) now known as First Bank of Nigeria Plc in 1953. While in the bank, he met and married Appolonia and God blessed the marriage with eight children. He also worked briefly with Shell Petroleum before starting his own business in 1970 soon after the Nigerian civil war. Because of his leadership skills, love for peace and humanity together with an uncommon integrity, he was often invited to serve in different leadership positions by the Rivers State Government. He was Chairman, Governing Council of the Rivers State College of Science and Technology (now Rufus Ada GeorgePolytechnic); Chairman, Rivers State Judicial Commission etc. He met Christ in 1955, through a beggar and that marked the beginning of a beautiful new phase in his life. He joined the Assemblies of God Church soon after that experience and later, the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International (FGBMFI). He rose very quickly in the Fellowship from Chapter President to National President within barely two years and later became its International Vice Presiden. He was later appointed Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Fellowship in Nigeria. He occupied that position until he went to be with the Lord on Tuesday, July 21, 2020 at the ripe age of 89. Until he went to glory, he was also a very committed member of the Redeemed Christian Church of God and a personal friend of Pastor E.A. Adeboye among many other men of God. As the National President, Mbata grew the Fellowship and took it to all parts of Nigeria and Africa. He made so much remarkable impact that his name became synonymous with the Fellowship. He is regarded by many as the father of the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International - Nigeria. Mbata was also an uncommon philanthropist. He had thousands of widows on his payroll and gave scholarships to countless orphans and indigents. He also deployed his immense resources to develop his community. In the words of His Royal Majesty, Professor Roland Woko, the traditional ruler of Eneka, “Mbata is a man that any community would pray to have. Any community that has an Mbata has somebody”.
Gender: Male
Name of Spouse Appolonia
State of Origin: Rivers State
Father's Name Pa Gabriel Mbata
Mother's Name Hannah Mbata

8 Children

Working Experience Teacher at Enitona High School, , Bank of British West Africa (BBWA) now known as First Bank of Nigeria Plc , Shell Petroleum , Chairman, Governing Council of the Rivers State College of Science and Technology (now Rufus Ada GeorgePolytechnic); , Chairman, Rivers State Judicial Commission etc.
Eneka Infant School, Eneka..Enitona High School in Port-Harcourt..
July 21, 2020
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