Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Oro Nation and Akwa Ibom South 2019 Senate


It is completely counter-productive and nonsensical, the struggle that Oro should be allow to produced the next governor of Akwa Ibom in 2019 so as to complete the eight years handed the Senatorial District.

Oro cannot, I repeat, cannot play the second fiddle as far as the gubernatorial seat of Akwa Ibom is concern. This stand is unequivocal and emphatic. Oro must willy-nilly be given eight years, two terms, as was given to the Ibibios and Annang, This is not negotiable and there is no going back even though the time may not be 2019.The time will definitely tell.

The ill-conceived, ill-considered and miscalculated decision and desire of some Oro people to be given the next four years from 2019 to steer the affairs of Akwa Ibom as governor is more or less settling for the crumbs hence, should be discarded by every well-meaning and right-thinking Oro person. I find it quite difficult to lend my voice to the misconceived decision and struggle basically because l know the desire, as far as 2019 is concern, is unattainable and as a realist, cannot grope to that direction.

Viewed from whichever dimension and perspective, mark my words, the idea shall remain unachievable. When the gods wants to kill a man, as the say, they first make him go mad. I was still  under tutelage though keenly observing the political arena when the former governor of Akwa Ibom State, Obong Victor Attah, towards the last lap of his administration, threw up the idea of ceding power to Annang nationality. Yes,the emphasis was on Annang not Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District.

Obong Attah was not mad, neither was he marked for Hades, for he is even still alive. The Elderstatesman was of good nature. In his wisdom, Attah saw the need for power to be shared across the three ethnic lines of the state. When he held sway, the emphasis was on core Annang Even though some  commentators believed he, as subsequent events showed, had  his son In-law in mind. Sane or insane the idea did introduced some positive development into our political sphere.

The political lights of the day fought Obong Attah’s intention of imposing Dr. Udoma Ekarika on Akwa Ibom but the actual idea of ceding power stood. Former Governor Godswill Akpabio became a beneficiary, by divine will, of that arrangement. Akpabio is from core Annang and Ekarika hailed from there too. This goes a long way to lend credence to the fact that the emphasis was on race  and ethnic divide, not on political divide called Senatorial District.

When the sole beneficiary of that arrangement was departing office, as a man whose palm kernel was cracked for him by a benevolent spirit, Governor Godswill, contrary to his name, proudly refused to be humble. He disrupted the very arrangement, nay foundation which gave him a vast opportunity and pedestal to emerged the governor of Akwa Ibom State. Put subtly, Akpabio ascended a throne created by providence even to his own amazement and at the expiration of his kingship, he demolished the palace, dismantled the throne and set the fortress ablaze! He successfully reintroduced, in the fashion of the late Idi Dada Amin and Mobutu Sese Seko, a condemned or already discarded political arrangement unmindful of posterity and history. The former governor out of sentiments and fraud denied Oron a nice opportunity to produced a governor largely due to hatred. He wholly forgot how an Oron son, Otu Ita Toyo aided his ascension to the Hiltop Mansion.

While leaving office former governor Akpabio hand-picked an Ibibio son whose Local Government Area, by political divide,not  ethnic block, falls into Eket Senatorial District. If Governor Udom Emmanuel an Ibibio man, rules for eight years and while departing hands over to another Ibibio man from Uyo Senatorial District which will inevitably be the situation, at the expiration of the Uyo Senatorial District governor after eight years as the arrangement stands now, if he chooses to toe the footstep of Godswill  Akpabio by hand-picking another Ibibio person from the Ikono/Ini axis of Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District, that clearly means that the Ibibios shall perpetually stay at the Hiltop Mansion probably till Thy Kingdom come.

The poser is, whose fault would it be, that of the Ibibios or the fault of a myopic Annang son ? Indeed there was in Akwa Ibom a governor who equated himself to God. In his utterances, actions and carriage, he was to himself God personified. So introducing an abolished political arrangement made utterly no meaning to him. After all, he had suddenly become the new political leader of Akwa Ibom and his laws were sacrosanct. God- personified- Akpabio equally ignored Oron in the sharing of government financed projects still, that did not make any meaning to him!

Godswill Akpabio did not only ostensibly installed a governor  of Ibibio extraction or origin, politically from Eket Senatorial District, he ensured the Deputy Governor emerged from Annang race, the House of Assembly speaker emerged from Ibibio, the Head of Service and the State Chief Judge were shared amongst them. Even the only Ministerial slot to Abuja still went,God knows how, to Ibibios leaving Oron with nothing. Well, Oron case had since been taken to the Foot of the Cross and is already receiving hearing at the Throne of Grace.

That said, let’s go back to Eket 2019 Senate. Of the three Senatorial Districts in Akwa Ibom,Eket otherwise known as Akwa Ibom South Senatorial District has more Local Government Areas than the other two,Ikot Ekpene and Uyo Senatorial Districts, seen individually. While Eket has twelve Local Government Areas with three Federal Constituencies, Ikot  Ekpene has ten  And Uyo has only nine Local Government Areas. Oron Federal Constituency with five Local Government Areas clearly remains the largest Federal Constituency in Eket Senatorial District, not numerically but by political divide called Local Government Areas .At the dawn of democracy in 1999,Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency was the first to produced a Senator, in the person of Senator Udoma Udo Udoma,now a Federal Minister. Thereafter, Eket Federal Constituency produced Senators Eme Ufot Ekaette and Helen Esuene respectively. Oron Federal Constituency produced the present Senator Nelson Effiong.

Ordinarily, Oron would not have anything to do with the Senate in 2019 if the clime were allowed to produced its governor in 2015 which would have been extended in 2019,going by the present tradition of two terms.By virtue of that egregious denial and subsequent denials of other key positions in the state, the only office naturally opened to the marginalized and cheated Federal Constituency, nay nation is the Senate and it behoves the entire Senatorial District and the powers that be to support the clime hook, line and sinker in their aspiration.

It appears from all indications that God’s fingers touched Akwa Ibom former Governor –cum-God personified, Godswill Akpabio and under hypnosis, he ceded the Eket Senatorial Seat to Oron and the unfolding scenario shows that his hand-picked governor wants to sustain the tempo, who knows! That the Governor want the status-quo to stand clearly intimates the Oron people that Governor Udom Emmanuel wants a second term and should not be opposed. That’s the subtle message. The Governor appears perhaps, to be an ardent believer in the philosophy of “give and take” during electioneering and actual elections but tight fisted with public funds after elections. Whatever the case, Oron has no good reason to begrudged governor Udom Emmanuel or worse still be envious of him. 

He did not make himself governor. He did not deny the race of her chance of producing a governor. He had no political structure of his own before the last elections. He was not even a party man or to say in an unambiguous language, he was not even a politician let alone a steadfast party man. Somebody brought him from his duty posts while still in active service. Who wouldn’t accept that?

Let me not digress. They have been offered the Senatorial platform, nay ticket and Oron must aggressively remained focused on what development the senate can attract to them. From the Oron nationality at the moment are some politicians warming up for the job in 2019 including the incumbent Senator who is now in the All Progressives Congress (APC).  From partisan politicians to charlatans and self centered individuals, core professionals and the like. Some have made their mark in their chosen field of endeavour. Some Federal Ministers, yet there is nothing tangible to show that Oron did produced these kind of leaders. 

Others have been the ruling party leaders who met at night to claim their own Ghana-must-go bags loaded with our collective toil but passed a different message to us at dawn, according to God –personified-Akpabio. Some are in the State Executive Council actively conniving with the foes of  Oron nationality to deny Oron their God given right to lead Akwa Ibom as their compatriots. Others carry the biggest and very expensive cars but go about throwing spanner into the works as the people try to achieve their collective goal of producing a governor.

If the governor is indeed a professional and he sincerely wants men of his kind to come join him build Akwa Ibom, he must not and cannot afford to ignore the world-class intellectual in the race. The governor knows him, no pretense. The Oron people knows him. When his name is mentioned, every read Akwa Ibom person knows him. Even those eying the Senatorial seat will salute him, if at all, they are quality conscious.

We cannot ignore this brain. He is a voice in his chosen field of endeavour to reckoned with on a national scale. You cannot mentioned his area of specialization in Africa and not think about him. He squares up with his counterparts at the global arena. His name is as intimidating as his academic credential. His professional exploits is enviable. His exposure, second to none. He owns and run a world class company even though to my mind, not very partisan.

But like the governor who, prior to his emergence, was not partisan, this intellectual giant has a burden to serve his people. He has been serving the people on a private capacity but now wants a larger pedestal to render conscientious service to Eket Senatorial District people. Of all the contenders he alone can happily present his credential and leave the arena smiling.

His presence in the Senate will command ineffable respect from co-senators. His voice shall be hearkened to and taken seriously and his contributions on the Senate floor, quite cerebral. I leave the governor to decipher who I am talking about for himself. He perhaps already knows him. The gladiators will fidget at the mention of his name.

We now want the best and nothing but the best. He is the best man for the job. Forget the usual tugs carrying politicians. Forget the conventional partisan politicians. Forget the what I can get from the system  politicians. Forget those who will even pay in kind to have their way. Check the records and the credentials. Check the exposure and the drive. Consider the impact they will be able to make when  given the ticket. Consider the respect they will be able to command as Akwa Ibom Senators. These and more should be your yardstick. He is the leader in his specialty and his field presently rules the world.

The truth be told I have never met this intellectual titan. But whenever I pore through my authorities and make some revelations about him either on the net or in national dailies, I used to be exhilarated and taken aback. His exploits, contributions, analogies, parallels, philosophies, worldview usually sweeps me off my feet. Give him the ticket and he will make Akwa Ibom proud. 

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