Recently the Rivers Governor was overheard at an occasion saying that if he had his way, he would build 10 flyovers in Ikwerre land and nothing would happen. He went on to say that nobody else would do it for him and went on to release quite a few Ntors as an early Christmas gift to Rivers people.
The video which has now gone viral has elicited many ferocious reactions on social media and is once again the subject of a number of beer parlour discussions in and around Port Harcourt. While some have laughed him off, many have condemned his utterances as unbecoming of a Governor. Not me.
I want to put it on record that I agree with him. First of all, he is right, not a single thing will happen. Rivers men and women have been silenced like sheep and reduced to children who have no voice. The once pride of a nation is now a shadow of its former self and nobody is talking. They are waiting for men to come and speak for them. Ntor. Let me add my own Christmas gift too.
The other part he is right is nobody else will do it for him. When this his tenure expires, a riverine Governor will take over from him and he will not build 10 flyovers in Ikwerre land. He will do the Trans Kalabari Road and move others forward too before handing over to an Ogoni Governor. Power must rotate. And so too must development. I am glad he knows it.
On the recent statement by my friend and brother Hon Igo Aguma, regarding the state of the APC in Rivers state, I want to say first and foremost that I feel his pain. While the first temptation is to rise to the Minister’s defence, I will resist it. Granted not all of what he said will go down well with many of us, but he spoke some hard truths and the minds of many silent others. As leaders we must learn to listen. Roy T Bennet once said that just as you should not let compliments get to your head, don’t let criticism get to your heart.
Thankfully we have more time on our side to begin to address issues raised and issues yet to be raised. I don’t want another disagreement to lead into a crisis and so on my part I will work for unity and a new style of conflict resolution. We are where we are today, as a party and as a state because of choices that we made yesterday. We can’t keep doing the same thing and expecting different results.
If anybody is to be called to order, it is ourselves.