“The Awakening Era: A CHALLENGE TO STATE BUILDING”

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Christopher Anokwu

I’M INVOLVED.
It is now five weeks to 29th of May; swearing in ceremony. It will please me, if you can, to have this post saved today by all citizens of our great Imo state. I watched and observed with great attention how the print media, radio houses and television were awash with the jubilant mood and words of our people following the emergence of Emeka Ihedioha as Governor elect. I had decided as it were, not to join in the celebratory euphoria for some reasons.

“The Awakening Era: A CHALLENGE TO STATE BUILDING”


However, I do not blame our people for celebrating the political demise of Okorocha; a man our people trusted and were even willing to take to the streets to riot and die for during the 2011 polls if the federal government tried to swing votes in favour of then Governor Ikedi Ohakim. In their numbers, Imo citizens; old and young, rich and poor, labourer and master, artisan and industrialist etc. All came to install him. When Ohakim left, the celebratory mood was even way higher than what Ihedioha’s victory has brought. Alas, as high as the celebration and pump and pageantry, so was the abysmal heartbreak experienced by our people especially in the last four years eclipsing the two terms of Okorocha. I do not intend to enumerate the many failings and evils of the man who dubbed himself “emperor” of Imo. The list is inexhaustible.
My message is simple and straight to the point. It is the very truth we must face in the coming years. The heart of the matter remains that Ihedioha will not fare any better. Some people might suggest that my verdict on a man who hasn’t even assumed office is predicated on perhaps dislike for Owerri zone or Mbaise people or for PDP or what other reasons may arise. Well, I’m from Owerri zone, Ngor-Okpala to be precise being same zone as Ihedioha who represented this zone for a record twelve years. Again my grand maternal home is Abor-Mbaise. And I belong to none of the major political parties.
In all sincerity, my opinion is predicated on the fact that Ihedioha spent billions in 2015 and failed. He is yet to recoup his expenses. In 2019 he spent a further two-thirds of 2015 campaign expenses. He will and must do everything in his power to recover these monies spent.
I’m aware, like we do in this part of the world, that many people as myopic as they are, and some with their level of education and exposure do very often legitimize and excuse the excesses of government when especially the individual (s) come from same place. So, I’m ready to be berrated and verbally maligned by the Mbaise clan and even my own Ngor-Okpala and Owerri zone people. I will welcome it. For what is the beauty of democracy if not liberty to speak?
I’ve come of age, chronologically and intellectually. I am convinced without a tear of doubt that zoning is a euphemism for “zoning corruption” under this present arrangement and crop of politicians. Orlu has governed 16 years, it has in no way bettered their lot more than other zones. Did Ohakim single out Okigwe zone people and pay their salaries? Did Rochas give Orlu zone people free or subsidized health care? Did Udenwa? I think not.
It is a pity. I’m not happy about it. I’m not overstating, neither am I trying to be euphemistic. I’m simply saying and it is sad, that by 2023, our people will still realize they’ve not gotten it right. It is not yet Uhuru for us.
The formula for depleting a people’s Commonwealth does not matter. What must concern us is that our Commonwealth must not be depleted. I make bold to register here that Okorocha depleted with family, Ihedioha is coming to do so with PDP chieftains. Like in this administration it never got to the common man, it will not in the incoming administration. Corruption is corruption especially financial and fiscal corruption, the formula is of no significance. If my opinions stated here come as scathing and angering to the politicians and incoming government as well s out going, then I challenge Ihedioha to prove me wrong after four years.


at 31, in many ways I’m a boy. In many ways a young man. In some ways and uncle and senior brother to many people. But, at this age, I can advise our people thus;
The party is insignificant for no party in Nigeria as of now has a road map or clear-cut blueprint to lift our people out of poverty, illiteracy, diseases in the next 25years at least. That is to say, no party has sustainable development plan. They seek immediate power alone.


That the individual is first to be considered. His or her party, zone and or other affiliates are inconsequential. For it is man in charge of his mind and affairs, not the other way around. A serious minded leader can’t be swayed by petty party politics and clanship or zone sympathy.


That money must not be factored when considering aspirants. When money is presented, resist if you can. If you can’t, accept it(afterall it is our money stolen from us) but proceed to vote for the man or woman that will ensure you will not be hungry or jobless again as to still come back after four years to accept paltry sums from politicians.
That your younger sons and daughters are coming of age and we can do this job far far finer, better and easier than the present crooks are.
And lastly for the moment, I encourage every qualified individual in my generation who knows and can handle the art of leadership to desist from praise singing of these criminals. That we’ve come of age. We can challenge this conventional disgraceful act which has characterized our state for decades now. We can challenge and win. But first we must challenge, only in the challenge can we win. The future of our own children is now very much in our hands. I will not gamble or jeopardize that of my unborn children. I do hope we all won’t.It is the awakening age. Wake up. We must be involved. It is not yet Uhuru. Let us advance wisely and forcefully as a United front and reclaim our destiny and take back ours.

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