By A.I.C. Akwarandu
It is noteworthy that since after the recent Iriji Mbaise festival, Governor Rochas Okorocha and his band of apologists have not recovered from the shock of the reality of Hon. Emeka Ihedioha’s increasing popularity across Imo State.
The fact that Okorocha was booed while Ihedioha was hailed and glorified at the festival is a rude reality check for the governor. One wonders why a group of people have been misinforming the public about how the governor enjoyed the Iri ji festival and have been issuing and re-issuing press statements since then just in a desperate bid to hoodwink the public.
They have gone to the extent of hiring some Mbaise young men whom the governor failed to empower, to organise what they called an ‘apology rally’ for him. The question therefore is, how many times will Governor Okorocha be apologised to by communities across Imo State? He was ‘apologised’ to by the people of Uguta, the people of Owerri ‘apologised’ to him, the people of Mbaitolu who revolted against their own son Prince Eze Madumere, also ‘apologised’ to the “unapologetic government” of rescue mission.
And now, Mbaise people are ‘apologising’. This festival of apologies reminds me of the saying that “Ihe agba na aka, ana eji oku ele ya”. This means that a ring on your hand does not need light to be seen. If at all Governor Okorocha has been doing well, I do not think that there will be need for the serial embarrassments he suffers across the state.
The governor should do serious introspection and find out where he has failed the people of Imo state and possibly make amends by apologising to them. But I fear that even such a step is now too late as Imo people appear fed up.
I feel Gov. Okorocha should go and look for the root of his misfortunes and leave a man blessed by God to continue rendering service to humanity. Rt. Hon. Ihedioha is not the only aspirant in Imo state.
He is not the only PDP man in Imo. He is not the only Mbaise man. Rt. Hon. Ihedioha has made his mark in his journey as a legislator. I am not here to emphasis on the much talked about Owerri/Elele road of which he facilitated the ongoing dualisation, neither am I here to talk about the Onitcha Uboma road which links to Okigwe, under construction through the instrumentality of the Deputy speaker.
The issue under discussion is not the massive Mbaise ring road which has encouraged economic activities for the good people of Mbaise or the fully completed Jetty at Imo river, Ngor Okpala, both federal projects he facilitated. This write up is not to talk about Ihedioha’s various empowerment programmes and even the latest distribution of scientific equipment to secondary schools in Imo state.
If that happens to be the reason, I would have taken much time to talk about the various water projects, health centres, solar electric lights situated both in Ngor Okpala and Aboh Mbaise and Indeed other parts of the state. I would have taken time to lay emphasis on the waste recycling plant located in Ilile Ohaji Egbema which the deputy speaker facilitated.
I would have needed no body to remind me that the deputy speaker facilitated the rehabilitation of Owerri/Umuahia road and Owerri/Okigwe road. Even the road linking from Mbutu, Chokoneze, Logora and Umuohiagu are all projects linked to the tireless efforts of the deputy speaker which I don’t wish to talk about.
But, the reason for this write-up is to advise Governor Okorocha’s aides to focus on mending the image of their boss which has gone into oblivion. For a man who had goodwill before becoming governor, to at this point be hiring youths to chant his praise shows that he has lost it. His aides should therefore concentrate on explaining to Imo people the reason why the roads shown on television are without potholes, while in Imo, potholes are inseparable from Gov. Okorocha’s road projects.
They should explain to the people why there is no job creation and why local government elections are still not conducted since he got to office till today. They should explain the financial status of Imo state and tell us why a huge debt of over 130 billion Naira hangs over the state. They should tell us why the once cleanest city of Owerri is now filthy.
Let them inform that where pensioners are only paid on television and even NYSC members posted to Imo state only receive their salary from the state on television. Let them not forget to tell us why the purported ‘Youth Must Work’ members were given “engagement letters” instead of appointment letters.
They can go further to tell us why a man who takes pride in talking about rule of law has been disobeying rule of law since inception into office.
Finally, it is necessary to state that Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha is like a golden fish which has no hiding place. He is a man whose time has come and no human being can pull him down.
He is a man with a large heart; a man full of wisdom and administrative decorum. He is a man loved by the youth, the old, women and even children. Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha cannot be stopped no matter the amount of pull- him- down strategies which the antagonists adopt. Ihedioha thinks; Ihedioha listens; and above all, Ihedioha delivers without telling stories.
Imo Ga Adi Mma Ozo. Akwarandu writes from Owerri