- BY VICTOR IYAMA•
It will almost no longer make an interesting piece to continue in the chronicling of Okorocha’s rape of Imo’s collective patrimony. For example, it is a near stale news that former Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha left a debt base of over 200 billion naira with hope that Uche Nwosu (had he succeeded Okorocha) will raise the debt profile to an unserviceable 400 billion naira to be inherited by whoever will become Imo’s Governor after Nwosu except if such a person turned out to be Aham Okorocha or Nneoma Nkechi Rochas Okorocha any of whom would have been expected by the ‘Rochanoic cabal’ to further cripple what would have been left of the near-dry ailing Imo treasury and retire a domestic debt not far away from the neighborhood of 600Billion naira for any unfortunate successor to inherit as Imo Governor.
Again the intent of this piece is not to further remind of the disappearing of the bail-out funds in several hundreds of Millions of naira under the nose of Okorocha’s son-in-law. Similarly it will not make an interesting piece either, if all it brings to the fore is the 700 Million Naira expended on the economically-repulsive, unnecessary and a lopsided-residual-concoction called the Akachi Tower at a time pensioners were being owed arrears spanning into 27 months and salaries of civil servants was on a payment arbitrariness which left the workers guessing what percentage it would please the Governor to pay them at the end of each of those tortuous months under Okorocha.
This piece is all about the ‘rebuild agenda’, as christened by Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, launched as a slogan upon Imo people and accepted by Senator Ifeanyi Araraume but on condition that in the ‘Rebuild Imo agenda’ no stone should be laid on a faulty foundation, no broken brick should form the ‘corner stone’ and no contractor who did not win the tender rights should be seen in the site supervising any rebuilding project. And like Araraume, non-sycophantic minds, real patriotic and unbiased Imolites have reasoned so too; that in the war to rescue a pathetically enslaved people, that in a battle of common resolve where the betrayed have managed to find a microphone, to deny them of their right to speak out is worst betrayal.
True loyalty of the electorate is derived from a fair process of selection they by themselves truly made. But to force acceptance of a product upon a people by simply coercing them to not check the expiry date before consuming it is malicious, wicked and genocidal. It offers no justice to compel a people to accept an anomaly in lieu of the faulty premise that it will allow for peace to reign. The consequences, unfortunately are as ugly as the manipulated process and in a true ‘rebuild agenda’, this is a far departure from acceptable standard.
Is it not the Bible that admonishes that a new wine should not find its abode in an old sac? If the structure called Imo was truly defaced, pillaged and maimed by a self-styled adversarious emperor, does it not make sense to demand that any rebuilding process should be without mediocrity, manipulations and subjugations? Like Araraume, this is the submission of sane minds, minds that have not been hypnotised with a political appointment to make them congregants in the celebration of a charade.
It is true that Imolites were united in a common resolve to reject the APC in the last general elections. In fact it made all the sense to vote out a Party that had been grossly de-marketed through contemptible anti-people policies, its nomenclature confined to the place of a taboo and its ideologies reconfigured to stand on its head. It is true that former Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha by the process of divide-and-rule caused the fragmentation of Imo APC such that each fragment whether of the ‘Agburu’ or of the ‘Coalition’ was in itself weak, limited and injured without owning up. It is true that in the bid to regain fresh air, Imolites opted for anything and everything not connected to Okorocha.
Interestingly, Imolites did not by this resolve expressly opt for the PDP. It was in fact a clear case of anything or anyone but Okorocha’s stooge. Did Imolites want Araraume? Did they prefer Tony Nwulu? Did Ohakim stand a chance? Was Ihedioha the most desirous? Is it not true that each one of these men had an intimidating followership and clout that threatened the very foundations of the APC-AA imperfect alliance under Okorocha-Nwosu? Subjected to the crucible of electoral provisions, as enshrined in the electoral act (as amended), could it be comfortably declared that in Imo State, the PDP clearly won the 2019 gubernatorial election? Or does it not make sense that in the circumstance, PDP/Ihedioha’s emergence is a clear happenstance, especially when the provision of 25% votes of 2/3rd spread across the entire 27 LGAs has refused to tally in the result collation that declared Rt.Hon. Emeka Ihedioha of the PDP winner of the 2019 Imo guber election? Because these are scenarios that beg for attention from a neutral arbiter, Senator Ifeanyi Araraume expectedly has been at the tribunal with a firm petition which is “I agree that I may not have won the 2019 guber election in Imo, I also agree and support every move to rebuild our tattered and battered Imo, but if we have to subscribe to a genuine move to rebuild Imo, then our corner stone should be without structural architectural defect, let us do a thorough process of selection, let the voices of the majority of the people produce their leader, let the man who did not win, not be declared thereof”. If by this prayer before the Tribunal, Araraume had become synonymous with trouble in the eyes of the less informed and easily compromised minds who have become direct or indirect beneficiaries of a questionable victory, then a reassessment has become imperative.
Secretary to the Government of Imo State, Hon. Uche Onyeaguocha earned his spot in the Ihedioha’s cabinet when he sacrificed his comfort in the police cell after tearing to shreds what was described as an incredibly over-inflated and ridiculously over-bloated result coming from Ideato South in favour of Uche Nwosu. Onyeaguocha contended that the total votes said to have been posted was by far a total departure from the total registered voters from that LGA. There was a near 200 percent inflation by electoral doctoring. If Hon Onyeaguocha, can now be easily hailed as the hero who saved Ihedioha at the most critical time, why then has it been difficult to accept another ‘hero’ who has been courageous to point out a similar circumstance that took place in the three LGAs of Ahiazu-Mbaise, Ezinihitte-Mbaise and Aboh-Mbaise in favour of Rt. Hon Emeka Ihedioha where the total registered voters fell far short of the total votes posted from the areas. Evidences point to a near 150% inflation combined. It is truism that heroism is not a monopoly. If Onyeaguocha could be celebrated for insisting that in the process to ‘rebuild Imo’, adversaries of the people must not be allowed to prevail, then it is injustice, it is unfair, a clear bias to vilify Senator Araraume for insisting on equity, fair play and constitutionality.
- Iyama is a journalist, public affairs analyst and can be reached on 08038546266, firstname.lastname@example.org