It is absolutely certain that most Igbo campaigners for outgoing President Goodluck Jonathan are so thoughtless that they have lost all forms of self-dignity. When a serious issue is raised about, for instance, the utter deception of Ndigbo by Jonathan through statements like that he would go into exile if by 2015 the 2nd Niger Bridge, they enthusiastically resort to uncultured utterances like “you are an idiot”, “you are a buffoon”, etc. These are utterances, which do not depict good breeding. Nor do they address the critical issues raised.
People of other ethnic groups paid heavily to defend Jonathan in the social media do not display the kind of uncultured behavior, which defines the conduct of these Igbo folks who probably receive far less than their counterparts from other parts of Nigeria in compensation for their role as rabie- infested attack dogs. in the last few days, these attack dogs have been abusing Fr Ejike Mbaka for alleging that the president and his wife are planning to kill him for revealing a message from the Holy Spirit that the president cannot be reelected in the forthcoming election. The priest also been explaining how he rejected a bribe from the president through the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.
Instead of seeking to establish the veracity, or otherwise, of the allegation, the Jonathan Igbo defenders have gone into a frenzy of hurling insults. Even Catholic ones among them have not displayed a different level of civility. This is, in a way, not altogether surprising. When Festus Odimegwu joined issues with Jonathan, the same inelegant characters reacted violently, questioning his Igboness. Yet, here is someone who has done more than any Igbo CEO of a multinational to develop Igboland. As the Nigerian Brewery CEO, Odimegwu cited at Ama on the outskirts of Enugu City the biggest NB plant in anywhere. He also led Nigerian Brewery’s acquisition of dead and dying breweries in Igboland like Life Brewery in Onitsha and Hercules Brewery in Arondizuogu, thereby enabling the owners to have good values for their investments. Odimegwu empowered such Igbo firms as Chisco Transport in a way no one, including Chidi Anyaegbu, founder of Chisco Transport, thought possible. He also empowered Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, the current Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and many others. Not to be forgotten is that Odimegwu began the process of radically upgrading, expanding and modernizing Nigerian Brewery plants and facilities in Aba, Enugu and other parts of Igboland which cannot be stated in black and white here for strategic reasons. Still, some mercenary Igbo pen pushers have the temerity to question not just his judgment but also his Igboness simply because he stated what the whole world has known for long: Jonathan is an awfully incompetent president.
Before these hack writers turned their puerile heat on Odimegwu, a near genius based on his achievements-- including his unrivalled record in the history of NB-- they had written nasty things about Oby Ezekwesili, a former World Bank Vice President who has also been an eminently successful minister in Nigeria. Her offence? Oby had the temerity to lead the Bring Our Girls Home campaign which enjoyed the support of such people as Mitchell Obama. When some 276 female students of Government Secondary School at Chibok in Borno State were kidnapped last April by Boko Hrama terrorists, Jonathan and his sidekicks like Alhaji Mujahadeen Asari Dokubo denied that the event ever took place. How could our commander in chief in charge of the army, air force, navy, police, Nigerian intelligence Agency and the Department of State Security live in such denial? For demanding that our commander in chief rise to the challenge of his office and comfort agonizing parents, relatives and friends of the missing girls, these shameless Igbo hack writers descended on Oby, a woman of great integrity.
This is not the end of the story, a story of pity and sadomasochism. When Charles Chukwuma Soludo, an extraordinarily talented economics professor and former Central Bank governor, did a brilliant x-ray of the development programmes of the two leading political parties, the same pro-Jonathan Igbo elements abused him thoroughly. It is self-evident that they do not possess the mental and ethical abilities to understand Soludo’s call to arms, made in the overriding public interest. Worse, when erstwhile Vice President Alex Ekwueme granted an interview showing how Jonathan had been treating him with utter contempt , despite the fact that he practically formed the PDP, the unconscionable hack writers went viral, accusing him of being afflicted with senility. This is a man the whole nation calls “venerable” on account of his great role in the restoration of democracy. And as ex Education and Health Minister, Ihechukwu Madubuike, also a foremost literary critic, has stated times without number, no person has done as much as Dr Ekwueme during the time he was vice president from 1979 to 1983 to restore the Igbo to glory.
No person will be surprised if the lynching Internet Igbo mob soon turns its cudgels in the direction of Pat Utomi and other decent Igbo men and women who have the courage to say no to sacrilege, as Chinua Achebe would put it.
What exactly is the Igbo stake in the Jonathan presidency? Hardly can you find anyone able to articulate how Jonathan’s presidency is in the strategic interest of our people. Federal roads in the Southeast like Onitsha-Enugu, Enugu—Port Harcourt and Aba—Port Harcourt highways are worse than they were before Jonathan. No seaport is being built in Igboland for economic and strategic reasons. No gas pipeline pipelines to enable heavy to be built. Innosins vehicles are being patronized by the federal Government. Federal expenditure in the Southeast is about one sixth of such expenditure in the North Central zone under Jonathan’s leadership. On February 1, 2015, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) jerked up electricity tariff for industrial concerns by 24%, but in the Southeast the tariff increased by between 94% and 103%! Consequently, companies like Innosons became automatically threatened. Innosons was compelled to pay N100m monthly upon spending N60m on diesel every month because of inefficient public power supply. Two days with the presidential vote less than two weeks away, the Federal Government announced a 50% cut in electricity tariff. Yet, this means that manufacturing companies in Igboland will pay much higher than their competitors in other parts of Nigeria. As Chika Emelike, the founder of the Kotek manufacturing group which produces the immensely popular Tummy Tummy noodles in Newi, has been telling the nation, industries in the Southeast are now being pressured to move elsewhere. Has anyone heard Ohaneze utter a word about the ongoing large scale de-industrialization of Igboland?
It is a shame that the Igbo are not being taken seriously in Nigerian politics due to the lack of strategic thinking by Igbo prominent politicians who are more interested in creating paranoia among our people and stirring raw emotions against the North and Southwest in particular even when our people live in these parts than elsewhere. The Igbo, under Jonathan’s presidency, are not heading the judiciary or the House of Representatives or the Senate. Nor is there any Igbo in the country’s security council. Raw emotions cannot take any people far in the 21st Century. Strategic thinking and building alliances will. We are now in a knowledge era.
Jonathan has just awarded a N9 billion pipeline security contract to ethnic militias in the Niger Delta and Southwest, just because of the impending presidential vote. The Movement for the Actualisation of Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) got peanuts. Yet, MASSOB was the first ethnic militia to demonstrate in the streets in support of Jonathan. Last week, Jonathan was in Delta to woo the people. Isoko, an ethnic minority led by Major Gen Paul Omu (retd), was given $200,000 but the bigger Igbo-speaking Anioma people of Delta North received a paltry $100,000. The president, of course, take the Igbo for granted. Why not when on the eve of his visit to Onitsha last January 17 on reelection campaign his Igbo handlers took a photograph of a bridge nearing completion somewhere and claimed on the Internet that it is the mythical 2nd Niger Bridge!
There is something fundamentally wrong with Igbo fanatical supporters of Jonathan. History will certainly accord them a status far less dignifying than that of saboteurs. They have no truth in them. Nor do they possess a sense of the sacred. They are all engaged in an ogre of debasement of reason because of the filthy lucre they receive from inelegant fellows like Femi Fani-Kayode and other self-professed Igbo haters. This madness will soon to come to an end.
C. Don Adinuba.