By Monday Ojila Yahaya
Sir, anytime I cast an honest look at your picture, I’m enthralled. How your melanin skin is robustly housed in the designer suit with a pair of Italian shoes to match; glowing in your tallness and the sprawling shoulders, I have no doubt Idoma men are the best anywhere in the world. This is a sentiment, and I can propagate it anytime.
Sir, it’s over a year since you took on the leadership to paddle the ship of our constituency. Sometime last year, I wrote that I hadn’t seen any significant difference between you and your predecessor; that the only things you have done upon assumption of office thus far, were your visits to heads of agencies and the loud reports on social media. Lots of your sycophants thundered it’s too early to make such a claim; that you needed more time, as they continuously compared your administration to that of your predecessor. Let me not state yet that, other constituencies having their leaders as first timers have begun harvesting the fruits of democracy.
This is not to compare, I believe you know Senator Abba Moro, if he’s not your political ally. He’s a first timer too, though a senior law maker.
He’s commenced massive empowerment programs across the length and breadth of zone c; he’s attended intellectual gatherings to discuss matters pertaining to governance; he’s granted interviews home and abroad; he’s eloquently contributed to notions on the floor of the house, and has some bills to his credit. These and more, have served to define him the best leader in this modern political epoch in Benue. In all these, you rarely see or hear his praises and worships.
Sir, you have never granted any interviews to the press; you have never sponsored any bill, neither have you spoken on the floor of the house yet, your media handlers have been trumpeting you as the best leader in the world, not even in Africa. The praises so far surpass that of Nelson Mandela which was and is the best leader Africa has ever produced. They have even gone ecclesiastical in comparing you to biblical figures.
They stated you organised a football competition. I saw the pictures on social media. To be candid, my ward councilor won’t even organise such a low-profile competition, let alone a honourable member. It’s also reported you shared rice during the last yuletide. Do I fault this or not? But I weep that we are still under the era of stomach infrastructure!
Though I can’t ascertain the veracity of the claims that you have begum some projects, these audio projects are domiciled in your local government, Agatu. Non of the audio projects mentioned is from Apa local government which constitutes a half of the constituency. The question then is: Why would a leader who claimed to have organised a football competition to foster unity between the two local governments of the constituency alienate another local government when it comes to audio projects execution?
Are you only a member representing Agatu? Do you want to pay Apa back for an offence that never was? Isn’t this a seed of discord that would propagate political chauvinism?
Recall that your predecessor did more for Agatu than he did for Apa. To lay credence to this, Agatu overwhelmingly voted for him in his second term, to the extent that he lost in his polling unit in Igah, Apa local government, over an alleged claim he never helped them as he was helping Agatu. He was always there to help Agatu in terms of providing relief materials in times of distress.
Permit me to remind you that you won not because you were the most qualified. You were merely a harvest of political misgiving. The people wanted anybody other than your predecessor. You are a product of anger and frustration. Reasons over a year, all we have got are audio projects and loud praises by your sycophants and political vuvuzelas.
Prominent among reasons your predecessor was ousted was the grave silence in the green chamber. Sir, is there any difference between you and your predecessor in this regard?
When people have high expectations from your government, I pity them. I don’t fault you because, during your campaign, you had no documented campaign polices by which we can judge your performance. The campaign was anybody other than your predecessor, coupled with the conflagration in PDP and anti-party.
An undergraduate asked me if you have a scholarship scheme to help students of your constituency, I told him I’m unaware. And if there’s any, thank you. If it’s otherwise, Perhaps education is never your passion, and you can’t be judged because you had not documented campaign policy that featured that.
The fact that Apa/Agatu Federal Constituency is unlucky with leadership is painfully evident in your administration and the previous ones.
My honorable, all hopes are not lost. You can still redirect your focus.
First, sack your media handlers. Pay no attention to your sycophants who only tell you what you want to hear. They are doing so to get favour from you and yank their shares that fall from the table.
Start a scholarship scheme for the students and prove that the education of your constituency is clearly a priority to you.
Be fair in your execution of projects for the two local governments in the constituency. Demonstrate that you are an inclusive leader.
Be vocal in the green chamber; sponsor bills and let us be conscious we have a representative in the chamber. We are tired of the grave silence.
Provide empowerment programs to alleviate the sufferings of the malnourished lot. Train the youths in various acquisition skills. Do these and more!
Finally, I believe so much in you. For now, your administration is in a mess of non performance. When I see laudable feats by you, I won’t hesitate to show accolades. For now, go and work, and jettison your political vuvuzelas.
Ojila Yahaya Monday writes from Abuja.