A section of the All Progressives Congress (APC) faction popularly called Ndi Agburu and led by the governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha took to the streets of Owerri Monday to protest the automatic ticket which APC national leadership granted its national legislators. By that exercise some members of Owelle’s kitchen cabinet has been affected from realizing their political dreams having been displaced by those with automatic ticket. For instance, Prof. Nnamdi Obiareri and Kingsley Uju lost out to Senator Ben Uwajumuogu and Goodluck Opiah respectively. Uwajumogu and Opiah are died hard Coalition members.
It is surprising that not until his ‘children’ were affected Okorocha did not bother to complain about this issue if he is sincere and altruistic about it all. It is mind wrecking that Okorocha’s greed would propel him to seek to grab everything without sparing a thought for others. It was reported that the party has tried to harmonize the positions between the two combating groups: Ndi Agburu and Coalition at the ratio of 55-45 in favour of his group, he rejected the proposal. He was also reportedly asked to drop either his senatorial ambition or the governorship ticket for his Son-in-law, to choose one he rejected it as well.
While the party is seeking to find a common ground to broker peace among the warring factions Okorocha would never have it. This is a man whose position entrusted in him the leadership of the party but he chose to split it by creating his Ndi Agburu, indicating that he believes in divide and rule. The party has never known peace ever since. Okorocha has proved himself a bad party man with his unending antics which seeks to propagate only his own interest. Those who label him as despotic, emperor and ‘Eze Onye agwala m’ (a King that never seeks counsel) are not far from that reality. Every inch of the way he fits the labelling.
It was Okorocha who single handed took a position against the erstwhile Chairman of the party, John Odiegie Oyegun when the National Working Committee (NWC) voted for consensus and continuity in office of the various levels of the party’s executives. After the party had agreed on this, President Buhari reversed himself on this following promptings from some quarters which led to the conduct of various levels of the party’s congress. The climax was the emergence of Comrade Adams Oshiohmole as the national chairman at the party’s national convention. It is no longer a secret as was once confessed here in Owerri at the South East for Buhari Rally by Oshiomhole himself that he could not have emerged but for the support he got from Owelle.
Perhaps in reciprocity and even against pending cases in the court Oshiohmole has gone ahead to support Okorocha in regaining the party structure which he once lost and which pushed him dashing from Owerri to Daura and Abuja in search of rescue that did not come until Oshiomhole took the leadership. It is surprising that the governor is moving against the man who helped him stand on his feet just because of the party’s national position to grant automatic tickets to some of its legislators. The party’s position must have been informed by a purpose which must be in the interest of the party.
Could it be said that the governor is not in tandem with his party’s policy? Is it possible that he is ignorant of this even as a high ranking member of APC? What did he seek to gain by launching into anti-party activities? Is it possible that he mobilized this misled group just to pacify his affected faithful and prove the Jagaban they call him. Why is the governor so intolerant of situations when they run counter to his position even when it is clear that his position on an issue runs counter to general public good? Why is the governor so selfish and imposing? Why is the governor so lawless and yet mouths rule of law.
How I wish people will be magnanimous enough to provide answers to these running questions. If Okorocha has been delivering the expectations of people I am convinced that Imo people will mass around him to champion whatever. Very painful is the fact that his government is one that enjoys a pariah status, that has torpedoed the life of Imo people in every way you can think of and yet he has the temerity to continually want to impose his wishes on the people.
Okorocha by his actions have proved himself an emperor, a hypocrite and mere pretender to deceive whoever that cares to get close to him. He is appearing a true democrat as his motley crowd appear to protest. But can he in all sincerity tell us how these men he is fighting for emerged. Did they go through the democratic processes as was enshrined in the party’s constitution or they were handpicked by Okorocha himself as the be all and end all? If Okorocha and his group are protesting against what they call imposition of candidates by the national leadership can he tell us what could be more imposing than his ‘superior wisdom’’ which found Uche Nwosu and others more qualified than those they have displaced.
For sure this is a case of kettle calling pot black. It is equivalent to the case of the man who wields cutlass to cut head and would never allow another with cutlass go behind him. Were we not taught by lawyers that those who come to equity must come with clean hands? How clean is Okorocha’s hand in this case before he could seek equity? It is a fact people have a right to protest but it should be within the limits of reason. Pulling out people to the street to disturb the peace of ordinary citizens for something so senseless and inequitable is simply abuse of the law.
I am in agreement with a recent statement by Chief Chuks Ajaelu, (PHF) a PDP chieftain and National Convener of the Markarfi For President, who recently warned that ‘Okorocha should not mistake the tolerant nature of Imo people for weakness’’. He has personalized this state for the wrong reasons to the extent I think Imolites have ignored him enough. On top of his bad governance which has imposed untold hardship on the people Okorocha’s noise fowls the air. We need a break. We need a breath of fresh air. We deserve it because it is our right.
I make bold to remind that leadership is all about moving and having people following you. I am asking my ‘governor my governor’ who is following him. If we truly have followers and in pursuit of the right thing there is no need compromising people with cash gifts of 1000 0r 5000 as reported in order to move them to the streets. That is our money been spent for the wrong purposes. In dealing with others especially in terms of leadership, we must remind ourselves that every of our action can never go unrequited and we must one day be called to account for it. If we escape the justice of man we cannot escape the justice of God which is the natural laws in creation. Owelle for how long will you revel in these fleeting pleasures which the lucre of power confers. Everything in material life is just ephemeral. Is it not time to give up?
Afam Echi, is a public opinion analyst and a commentator on national issues