Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Illegitimacy of Udom’s gubernatorial ambition

Illegitimacy of Udom’s gubernatorial ambition


Mr. Udom Gabriel Emmanuel should not delude himself that his is a legitimate quest to govern Akwa Ibom State.  He lost legitimacy right from when his political party, People Democratic Party, PDP, erroneously fielded him as its governorship flag bearer despite clear indictment of the dishonest primaries that produced him.  

Consequently, even though promoters of  ‘udomification’ attempt to make people believe they have a man of the moment, they cannot lay claim to popular acceptance.  Even if the entire machinery and resource of state is squandered on manifesting their wish, every vote cast to oppose his success will be worthwhile.  

Udom at every opportunity tries to show he could be assertive but one finds this hard to believe considering his inability to put his foot down by telling those desperately pushing him against the will of the people through fraudulent, corrupt and undemocratic means to stop. 

All contestants in the governorship race, have  intimidating track record. In Udom’s case, his over 17 years in the finance sector, ranging from serving as Audit Manager of Price Water Coopers to heading the Zenith Bank, as its Executive Director, is something to remember. Except for politics, Udom remains a priceless asset to Akwa Ibom State and Nigeria. His experience and contacts could come in handy in developing our state yet, good as he sounds, he cannot do us any good getting into power through the back door. 

Ultimately, isn’t he a victim, too? Isn’t he held under siege by controlling forces working on his crave for power to push and pull him towards the hilltop as their proxy? Our people say, “isobo ke bre ye inyang nte idi benke”. Let’s hope our Deacon’s quest for power does not regrettably lead him into the sadistic grip of the three witches. 

With due respect to Mr. Udom, his spectacular curriculum vitae, sharply contrasts how he is perceived in reality. Yes, he has had an excellent career life in the financial industry but sorry to say, all these years in dealing with high brow corporations appear not enough to have instilled in him integrity, the very character paramount in leadership. 

Consequently, as good as his dossier reads, it fails to impress anyone. The only convincing way Udom can assert himself is to apologize to Akwa Ibom people for following through the audacious venture to impose him on us and step aside for true democratic process to take place. 

The question is, given his displayed cluelessness, since he was discovered by the Governor’s wife, can he dare stand up against the imposition plot and risk being emasculated and dumped by his taskmasters? 

Like a drug addict, who may have tasted a little too much of heroin, Udom got himself hooked such that a once respectable technocrat sinks deeper everyday into the murky suds of dirty politics. 

Has Udom ever taken time to reconsider the implication of his actions against his people? Could it be that he is thinking that the end will justify the means? Such a lame excuse for an atrocious rape of democracy is to say the least offensive. One cannot build a structure on falsehood and expects it to be sustained thus even if he is rigged into power he cannot honestly tell himself that he has the mandate of the people. 

So, Udom keep your economic blueprints, business contacts, celestial development programmes to yourself until you have fulfilled the simple procedure of contesting and winning fellow aspirants in an open, free and fair delegate election before going ahead into the general election. Otherwise, we in our hundreds of thousands, will vote against you. We will instead vote for Obong Umana Okon Umana, the APC governorship candidate, or consider Bishop Samuel Akpan, the Accord governorship flag bearer, who both foresaw the resident evil much earlier and left to give us an option to rampaging PDP.
We may not be violent like the Arab Spring or disorderly as the Umbrella Revolution of Hong Kong nevertheless we will act in accordance with democratic principle to vote against surfacing of a bad government. Like the Chairman of G22, Obong Nsima Ekere, rightly charged, “it is time to move on to restoration of the dignity of Akwa Ibom State that has been so savagely raped and plundered”. 

Forcing a finance expert to govern a state cannot cover up for eight years of ceaseless pilfering of our sub-treasury nor will it restore paradise lost by a visionless and wasteful government. Placed before us therefore is the choice between slavery and freedom. It is our constitutional right as responsible citizens to oppose tyranny and choose freedom. If freedom is our choice then let’s fight for it! 

Barrister Effiong Abia, a member of the G22, in explaining his reason for holding on against imposition, said he is certain that ideals of democracy are not abstract, they are practicable. Democracy protects individual rights and keeps political power evenly distributed. It is possible to have a truly representative government, where the wishes of the people are respected and implemented. Putting it succinctly, we are not supposed to be victims of democracy, but its beneficiaries. 

Anything that is contrary to our expectations or falls short of what true democracy offers is not acceptable. Therefore, we must all rise to vote out a sinister system that intends to corrupt our experience of democracy. Until we realize our enormous responsibility as electorate to exercise the sacred franchise, the power to decide through the ballot our destiny, we may remain in bondage for many years to come. 

Those who want to keep us down lie to us that the seat of government has granted them license to decide for us but at February’s Election we will demonstrate that we know who really owns the power to choose.

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