I am not a card-carrying member of the All-Progressives Congress, but I am a supporter of the APC nationally and in Rivers State. Because I know that the APC holds a better bargain for the rivers’ citizen. As a lecturer, I teach with analysis, I compare likes. I am Ogoni but I am not blinded by quick fix demands, I believe that the institution of the turn-by-turn principle at the federal and state level is the gives a sense of belonging to all. So, if you hear me talk about the governorship and feel that I am not sounding like the average Ogoni, its am looking at the big picture.
Ogoni is upland we know. When our leader and hero, late Ken Saro-Wiwa and late Obi Wali felt marginalized in the scheme of things, they claimed it was riverine oppression on the upland. They started that political agitation, so I will be a hypocritic to today claim that there is no upland or riverine. Yes, there are rivers everywhere and there is land everywhere, yet, the lifestyle in Kula and Bonny are different from what it is in Bori and Isiokpo. That was why I supported Amaechi’s selection of Dakuku over Magnus.
I also supported Amaechi’s stance that the riverine be supported to produce the next governor after Odili and himself. However, my support for the leader of the APC in Rivers State, Hon Rotimi Amaechi is now requiring a review. I had long noticed that Amaechi has a great deal of admiration for Alhaji Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the lion of Lagos politics. Which politician wouldn’t you may say? A man who has conquered his environment and rides on the heads of men like a colossus. Amongst the 36 governors elected in 1999, he remains the most relevant and powerful. From being the godfather of a state like Lagos, he moved on to overrun the South-west and is today the national leader of the ruling party!
Even President Buhari knows that Asiwaju has the tallest political stature in the country, followed by Atiku before Buhari. However, I think that the best of APC may come from either Vice President Yemi Osinbajo or Minister Amaechi. However, I am inclined to supporting the minister mainly because I think he is politically savvier and daring. However, his decision to back Tonye Cole for the governorship of his home state exposed his depth in critical analysis and evaluation. If Tonye Cole is the best man for the job of governorship, then we should invite, Tony Elumelu or Jim Ovia to run for the presidency.
Mr. Amaechi cannot be so insensitive and petty and expect us to give him our heritage as a nation. Even amateur politicians know that you don’t reintroduce a rejected horse. There are several battle lines: there is the Magnus Abe faction, there is the Wike PDP and there is the need for sectional balancing; so, if you want to win, you have to back a candidate that your opponents would tolerate if they lose. But if you field a candidate that looks like an outsider, then they fight to finish. Like it or not, politics is for politicians. Good politicians introduce technocrats into administration.
Laughable is the excuse of choice of a collegiate of leaders. That the elder who lamented four years ago that ‘nobody knows him’ is the one who chaired a committee that ‘unanimously’ endorsed Tonye Cole is a joke taken too far. If you want to be president, you should be fairer, nicer and more sincere. What if those you are hoping would back you for what you consider your contributions to the Buhari presidency also endorse Tein Jackrich unanimously?
I know you like challenges and may have been pricked by a subtle blackmail, but what wisdom is there in throwing away the baby and the water? Sir, with all the respect I have for you, I cannot but say you goofed. Allow the emergence of the most acceptable if you the best possible from Kalabari, winning is important. That’s the only way, don’t bank on the razzmatazz of 2019. Somethings aren’t sustainable, the Awara fluke can’t happen again. Let APC go and win because the average rivers person wants to end the ‘ntoor era.’ Don’t help PDP retain power by default. Because, no one fools all the people all the time.
If Rivers people get the hint that all that matters to you is the presidency then am afraid you will walk far. No matter the claims of the APC leadership in the state, the imposition of Tonye Cole can’t be the decision of party leaders. Don’t they know that the Kalabaris don’t feel Tonye? The politicians don’t feel him and the people don’t know him? Insensibility to the feelings of party members is anti-party. You were reported to have claimed that you regretted your costly experiment with the same man four years ago. If against the backdrop of your presidential quest, you stick to this error, then you are probably telling us that your hope is beyond God and the people. I pray you don’t attract the wrath of God and the people.
Maybe it’s not clear yet that the Ambode treatment is Tinubu’s greatest undoing now. Anyone who believes that the presidential ticket is already in the kitty may be shocked. Sir, I will advise that you watch the arrogance and correct this mistake while you still can.
~ Dr. Mrs. Labari Okosi