SOON, Abia State governor, Chief Theodore Ahamuefula Orji (Ochendo) would declare his intent for a second term in office on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The declaration is much desired and challenging for many reasons, taking into consideration the unfolding political developments in the State in the last few months that Orji dumped PPA for PDP.
The most challenging task is for the people to ensure that all the needed support will be given to Orji not only for him to win the party ticket, but to win the election proper. If for nothing, it will be good to give him a pat on the back for summoning courage to dismantle the cabal that had held the state down in the last 10 years.
Already, the signal is there that the cabal having been conquered is not relenting as they have started regrouping under the guise of resurrected PPA and have found solace in one of their stooges, Stanley Ohajuruka, to fly the party governorship ticket in the election. With this, it is clear who they are and where the common enemies of state are coming from. So it is left for the people of the State to remain vigilant and alert now for the wounded lions are prowling around looking for whom to devour again. Even with wounds on them, they are tired, but seem to have refused to retire from the scene.
But the good thing is that they and their agents are already known and good strategies must be devised by the people to deal with them once and for all in next year’s elections. I believe that Governor Orji should be the rallying point to achieve these objectives, because apart from knowing them well, he initiated and led the onslaught against them for the liberation of the people and will stop at nothing in putting a permanent full stop to their antics against the state.
But the question is: Can Orji achieve this alone? It is very simple and clear that he cannot do it without the massive support of the people. That is why he has carried majority of the people along in all the political moves and decisions he has made in recent times for the repositioning and betterment of the state, unlike in the past when the godfather gagged everything. So whatever were the mistakes of the past should be forgiven and forgotten in order to chart a new course for the future of the State. That is the only way the mistakes of the past, if there is any, would be addressed or corrected.
In days ahead, the cabal will come up with all sorts of political tricks, including name-calling and blackmail to know whether they will deceive the people to believe them again. But they have forgotten that nothing is hidden under the sun and Abians are wiser now.
Besides, it will be shameful, regrettable and sad if the people allow this golden opportunity provided by Governor Orji in liberating the State to pass them by again. The PDP stakeholders in the State who were chased away from the State and government by previous administration, but were brought back by Orji recently have major roles to play in the task ahead to ensure that they did not fall back to their past.
The likes of Onyema Ugochukwu, Enyinnaya Abaribe, Nkechi Nworgu, Chief Vincent Ogbulafor, Prince Benjamin Apugo, Ojo Madueke, Adolphous Wabara, Uche Chukwumerije, Senator Ike Nwachukwu, Mao Ohabunwa and others are being watched by Nigerians and Abia people in particular to know how they would utilise this golden opportunity in collaborating with Orji and the people to salvage the state and her resources from the prowling and hungry cabal.
Their support for Orji should not end in the party primaries, rather they should work with him as a team to ensure the success of the party at the polls. That is the only way the State’s recent return to mainstream politics could be guaranteed for the good of the people. It is by doing so that their commitment and readiness to work for development of the State should be measured and determined.
They have to take the crusade of total liberation of the State to the grass root to intimate the people on the need to do away with their common enemies and embrace their liberator (Orji).
They should convince all Nigerians that their support and attendance during Orji’s defection to PDP on August 28 in Umuahia was real and for good of the state. Nothing short of that is expected from them. For those who were kicking or opposing Orji’s return to PDP, they are entitled to their opinion. But the beauty of it all is that they are in the minority and the majority will always have their way in a democratic process. I still believe that the likes of Ikechi Emenike and Reagan Ufomba will realise the need to have a rethink to their approach in the whole political developments in the State and take a wise decision to go with the people by supporting Orji’s re-election bid.
Those who have been criticising Orji for non-performance are not sincere with themselves and the true situation in the State.
With meager State resources and huge debt inherited from his predecessor, Orji has been able to prove that he has what it takes to reposition the state in the last three years.
His wise decision to subdue the cabal and damn the consequence has brought in new opportunities in the state that must not only be consolidated but strengthened for posterity. I think Orji’s second term bid is not all about him, but about the State and people. I wonder what the situation will be like now, if he has not taken the bold step of liberating the State. As can be witness now, there is easy calm in the State and the people are happy about it.
In a bid to improve the security situation, the State government had recently spent huge sums of money in procuring security equipments for the security agencies in the state. Also, permanent camp for repentant kidnappers is underway to ensure that they are rehabilitated for better and meaningful impacts in the society.
For now, the ball is in the court of the people of the State, If they know how to play, they must score goals to Orji’s advantage. If they don’t know how to play, they should go and learn quickly ahead of the next year elections, so that their common enemies (cabal) would not delude them under any guise for the consequences will be devastating. It is a decision time for the liberated Abians.
Adagbu, public affair analyst writes from Owerri Imo State