Your Excellency Sir it’s approximately two months I stepped down as your Media Adviser on mutual consent after 22 months of dutiful service to you. I am sure that you cannot question my loyalty and love for you during this brief association because they were demonstrated passionately.
Therefore, before my intent is misconstrued as attack by your servile flatterers, please reflect deeply how fiercely I defended you with perlocutionary rebuttals which more often than not exposed me to opprobrium and glare of contempt from disenchanted public. Only a man with genuine love for his boss will absorb bullets for him. Remember!
So do not be apoplectic with rage at my decision to write to you through this method instead of my conventional approach. The reason is to avoid the same scenario of the past where my suggestions were undermined after listening to counter suggestions from individuals who take advantage of your absence on social media to misadvise you.
Contrary to the narrative, I was astounded when you told me that you were forced to the Senate against your wish in 2015 by some individuals who I wouldn’t mention their names. The reason for your initial objection, according to you was that you were tired and needed a rest after 16 years in government but unenthusiastically succumbed to their pressure after they purchased INEC form for you and asked you to go to the Senate and REST.
I was bewildered that you acceded to this anti-human advice to choose an important place like the National Assembly (where salient issues affecting the welfare of the people are debated and laws enacted to tackle them) to rest at the detriment of the aspirations of your constituents.
I had expected you to disregard further advances from any individual or group urging you to seek reelection in 2019. But your recent submission that the same people had told you again to return to the Senate in 2019 to continue resting until 2023 and your enthusiasm about it give me the heebie-jeebies.
Please my boss do not heed to this advice the second time because those selling the idea to you that Senate is a retirement ground where your only rationale for seeking reelection is to rest want you disgraced. I know that it is on record that you did sponsored 12 bills, four motions and empowered people in the last two and half years. But remember that at the end you will not be assessed by the number of bills you sponsored but the ones enacted into law. You will not be serenaded by the number of empowerment items displayed but the actual number given out and the real beneficiaries.
Do not listen to those servile flatterers telling you that you have achieved so much at the Senate and that your constituents are happy with you. It is not true. People are disenchanted.
They see your achievement as modest. Your men are very active on social media; if they love you sincerely they should be bold enough to tell you the people’s perception of you.
Even if they had not, you cannot claim ignorant of this because the outcome of the last survey I conducted on your behalf in the six LGAs that constitute Abia Central – Umuahia North and South, Isiala Ngwa North and South, Ikwuano and Osisioma – on September 2017 using random sample is with you. If in doubt please hire the services of another social scientist to ascertain its verisimilitude.
You may be working as hard as you want the people to believe but the fact remains that the people do not see your efforts as productive as you think. There is a consensus of opinion among Abia central electorate to vote you out come 2019. You will be humiliated at the polling units if you relied on the armchair report of these claques to taste your popularity further in 2019.
Have you considered why despite all your efforts to placate the people, brickbats still outnumber plaudits? It is because you have neglected Right Based approach to development. People are rational and want to be given what they need not what you feel they need. You have done your best from your time as the Governor of Abia State. And history will always remember you for erecting buildings “LEGACY PROJECTS” and given out buses and cars to youths for empowerment. Today as a Senator of the Federal Republic most people consider your attraction of boreholes, transformers and grinding/sewing machines empowerment a drastic decline in value.
This was proven last week Monday when a campaign poster advertising you for President surfaced online. I wept at the fusillade of missiles it attracted from the masses. Your panicky E-Robots made the matter worse with impulsive cacophonous responses that made you the target of public hostility and odium instead of projecting you capable enough to be voted President.
My heart bleeds each time I watch you struggled to pacify the people with donation of wrappers and bags of rice in the 21st century Abia. You are only pouring a spoon of water in an ocean. There will be no significant impact whatsoever.
For instance, the 2006 census placed the population of Abia central at 1005, 351 (One million and five thousand, three hundred and fifty one). Isiala Ngwa North Local Government population 153,734; Isiala Ngwa South Local Government population, 134,762; Umuahia South Local Government population, 138,570; Umuahia North Local Government population, 220,660; Osisioma Local Government population, 219, 632 and Ikwuano Local Government Area population, 137,993.
So how many bags of rice would you share to make meaningful impact in their lives? A bag of rice contains 64 dericas, if you multiplied 64 dericas of rice by 600 bags you shared last December; it will give you only 38, 400 dericas. So when divided by 1005, 351 people an individual will go home with a derisory 0.03 per cent (less than one quarter Cigarette cup). So how does that ameliorate their starvation? Rather than plaudit, people will feel discontented especially when such exercise had been blown out of proportion on social and traditional media. It is tantamount to robbing oil on their lips and claimed you have given them food.
These are not what the people need. What they are yearning for is a radical legislation that will expedite development and give them equal opportunity to compete in a capitalist Nigeria State. Your detractors have mastered this anachronistic strategy of yours and are using it to reawaken the consciousness of the masses. That is why your empowerment programmes have alienated you further from the masses instead of endearing you to them.
I remembered one of the articles I authored on your behalf: “Like America’s George Washington, Sen. Orji Is Abia’s Symbol of Unity” where I made comparative analysis and presented you as like mind to this great father of America. In case you have forgotten, let me remind you that being the first America’s President with no precedent for how he should conduct domestic or foreign business, Washington realized that the way he handled the job would impact how future presidents approached the position.
He then handed down a legacy of strength, integrity and national purpose. Then the United States was a small nation consisting of 11 states and approximately 4 million people, so being mindful that his actions would likely determine how future presidents were expected to govern, Washington worked hard to set an example of fairness, prudence and integrity.
I urge you to emulate George Washington and ensure you set a precedent which will serve as a model for our generation and next. It will be etched in our political annals that a certain Senator T.A Orji set the standard being used as benchmark for evaluating and electing legislators in Abia central. The plan to extend your rest in the Senate to 2023 by seeking reelection in 2019 as suggested by your few friends is tantamount to self-immolation.
It is incongruous and churlish that handful of individuals would demonstrate such gross contempt for democracy tenets. Their measly votes will not guarantee you victory at the poll unless they are planning to subvert the wish of the electorate. The society is dynamic and people are becoming wiser every day. It’s not too late to retract your steps and align yourself with the aspirations of the people. A leader is not imposed on the people but emerges from them. The people’s ethos is symbolized by the leader’s ethical qualities.
Anything contrary to this will be cataclysmic. It is therefore better for you to quit with your head high and maintain your enviable status in Abia State than stubbornly going to the poll to be humiliated. Once this is done, you will lose your relevance in Abia politics because these people misleading you at the moment will swap loyalty. You will be left in the cold and lonely probably not needing security personnel to guard your gates any longer.
Don Norman Obinna