No doubt, opposition is the beauty of democracy. As an acclaimed writer, I have written a lot on opposition participation in the building of democracy in Nigeria.
It is an acknowledged fact that for true democracy to take firm root in Nigeria, people with opposing viewpoints are expected to put government on its toes so that in the end, development and people oriented policies can be achieved for the overall benefit of the populace.
In Imo State, this is not so. I say this because rather than
concentrate to play the expected role as opposition parties and
groups, these disgruntled elements in our society who few months ago were at the helm of affairs and who actually devalued leadership in the state have continued to sponsor unwarranted and wicked stories against the government of His Excellency Owelle Rochas Okorocha, and the Speaker of Imo State House of Assembly, The Rt. Hon. Chief Benjamin Uwajumogu.
Having failed woefully in the 2011 elections and totally rejected by the people of the state and having also failed woefully at the
tribunal (courts), these detractors without face have regrouped to distract the purpose driven government of Owelle Rochas Okorocha.
Again, these shameless detractors, having tried their best to instigate crisis between the Imo State House of Assembly and the Executive and failed, have resorted to mudslinging, popularly called “Igha-aja” in Igbo Language. No wonder they have in recent times been sponsoring so many stories against the state government.
Not too long ago (precisely on Wednesday 1st February 2012) these expired and impotent politicians sponsored a front cover story in the Announcer Newspapers with the Headline “Imo Deputy Governor Stripped of Works Ministry Portfolio?In the story, they tried to give the impression that the Rt. Hon. Speaker had assumed the position of Commissioner for works. I have since done a rejoinder to that effect. (See attached Rejoinder).
Not satisfied, the same enemy of development in Imo State sponsored another publication in the FRONTLINE EXPRESS NEWSPAPERS (edition of February 9th 2012) with the Headline “IMO ASSEMBLY QUERIES AGBASO”. In the said story, they Sponsors accused the Rt. Hon. Speaker of running the Works Ministry from the Assembly and
that the Permanent Secretary and Directors of the Ministry operate from the Assembly complex.
The RED PARROT Newspapers of Monday 6th February 2012 and IMO TRUMPETA of 9th February 2012 edition also carried sponsored negative publications against the Imo State House of
Assembly. Nothing can be further than the truth. And the truth remains that Speaker Uwajumogu is diligently performing his legislative duties. He also performs his oversight functions efficiently and effectively. At this point, it should be noted that at no point has the Ministry of Works moved to the state Assembly complex. Also the permanent secretary and Directors of the Ministry have never operated from the Assembly complex under any guise.
For sure, the attempt by the enemies of development in Imo State to blackmail the Rt. Honourable Speaker will never work because Speaker Uwajumogu has demonstrated enough sincerity in piloting the affairs of the Assembly. He has been acknowledged as a legislator per excellence who knows his onions. No wonder so many organizations, Associations, and even his colleagues (Honourable Members) have continued to give him merited awards of excellence and commendations. The GUIDIAN NEWSPAPERS few months ago listed the ebullient Speaker as among the 50 Nigerians of integrity and credibility.
Again the NATIONAL WAVES magazines and Newspapers few weeks ago honoured Rt. Hon. Benjamin Uwajumogu with the best Speaker Award. Not done, several communities in the state and beyond have honoured this vibrant speaker of Imo State House of Assembly because of his exemplary leadership qualities. The honourable members too, on their own volition few weeks ago passed a vote of implicit confidence on the people’s speaker. All these encomiums for speaker Benjamin Uwajumogu have been possible because he has brought legislative sanity to the extent that people oriented motions; bills and laws have been passed.
Also he has provided an enabling environment where other law makers ventilate their minds through robust legislative dialogue, debate and discussion which has truly integrated, inculcated, incorporated and aggregated the developmental interests of the people of Imo State. The records are there for all to see.
This is the crux of the matter. I therefore make bold to state clearly that because of these qualities of the people’s speaker, enemies of democracy are now afraid of his rising profile. Hence they have decided to throw mud at him. But the simply truth is that they will never succeed in their evilcratic and jezebelic plot.
Rt. Hon. Benjamin Uwajumogu and indeed other Honourable members of the Imo State House of Assembly will continue to do, not just their legislative duties but also their oversight functions. It should therefore be symbolically right to caution the so called opposition and detractors to concentrate on constructive critisms and opposing views with positive suggestions on how to move the state forward rather than looking for cheap publicity.
Let us give peace a chance in Imo State. This State must surely be better.