Okorocha, Why The Demolitions In Owerri? Part 2
The Nigerian Nobel Prize winner, Prof Wole Soyinka said, “The man dies who keeps silent in the face of tyranny.” Martin Luther King, Jnr. further stressed that “The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people, but the silence over that by the good people”. If our collective silence keeps on going, then the man has died. If well-meaning and good Imolites cannot rise and say decisive NO to this grand cruelty and oppression, simply because we are not concerned, then we are all participants of the tragedy and actually the pioneers of the tragic flaw.
I am aware that there are many who have seen these demolitions, just as there are some who have not and there are many who even if they are shown will not see such, as they either pretend or are habitually blind as a result of sadism and being accomplices. It is on the truth in these three categories of Imolites that Leonardo da Vinci remarked that “There are three classes of people: Those who see; those who see when they are shown; those who do not see.”
I pray Imolites of the middle class and every other well-meaning Imo citizen or resident to join ask Governor Okorocha whether he is building new Imo Airport at the Orlu road that warrants the unending and brutal demolitions. As the Greek Philosopher Aristotle rightly said, “The most perfect political community is one in which the middle class is in control, and outnumbers both of the other classes”.
It is our responsibility to outnumber both the rulers of the State and the victimized citizens who in this situation fall into the oppressed poor class. It is our sole responsibility to convoke public hearings and opinion- sprays, urging Rochas to retrace his rage and raves. Abraham Lincoln reminds us that “you cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today”. Let’s rise Imolites, because yesterday was others’, today is theirs, tomorrow may be yours (directly or by extension). Ewu richaa ji onye uso, oriwe nke onye etiti! “Our husband” like the literary artist, Ola Rotimi, wrote, “has gone mad again!”
This literary madness would certainly lead to physical dead than administrative that Athol Fugard (wrote in his Swize Banzi is Death). And the reality of this physical death of structures and Imolites’ happiness is what we must fight against. Owerri Capital Territory is indeed in trouble, although just as the Christian Holy Writ said, “every man reaps what he sows,” and as we renew William Shakespeare’s declaration, “the evil that men do lives with them.” Owerri and in fact, Imolites sowed in cheers and are reaping in tears, while the women today protest after eating Governor Okorocha’s plates of rice.
Owerri people killed their own during the last elections in the State and today are receiving back their own portion of the blood of Abel that has gone to God’s presence crying for vengeance. They killed their own, slaughtered it on the altar of xenophobia. While doing it, it was thought that it was another person’s undoing. But as the Owerri elders would say, “O mere mmanu mee onwe ye, arighi ihe o ma,” nwa aturu na-anwure ike ya o chee na ya n’anwure obi onye nwe ya. Nte n’ere oku, o si na ya na-agba abuba. Chei, Owerri, our fathers’ Owerri! How can the mighty fall like this? No one is a stranger in his land, except when he has told the beloved sojourner how his ancient fathers came to acquire the very land, which after the revelation, he becomes a psychic stranger to the sojourner. The Igbos say that “ekele gahie nku aka, owola ihe ozo”.
If I may ask, why are the Owerri Municipal Council indigenes agitating against the revolutions of Governor Okorocha? Why are they agitating against the evacuations of ancient structures and monuments? Rochas for sure will do more than they are agitating against. When I was a little boy, our school teachers then used to sing a particular song after assembly while matching into the classrooms- “Step by step, day by day, I will follow Jesus, etc.” Rochas started step by step.
First, the split of the ancient Kingdom ruled by His Majesty Eze Njamanze into 5 kingdoms, which has never happened in history. When this spit was on board, who and who were bold enough to protest and resist the division? Okorocha was allowed and heralded for it and the new Kings emerging from Kingless Dominions mounted ceremoniously unto thrones priory inexistent and thus not only enjoyed the desecration of the Kingdom, but also undermined its influences as it is said that “gidigidi bu ugwu Eze”. Owerri nchi ise allowed division into them, and today cannot come together to fight a common interest and defend the values of their ancestral patrimony.
These notwithstanding, we must not leave Owerri to suffer for the sins of the contemporary generation because the city is not only ancient and ancestral, but historic, cultural and of deep spiritual and religious values. Take the EKE UKWU Owerri for example. The market is an ancestral and ancient market, founded by the Onunwa lineage and their kindred; with unparalleled metaphysical realities poised for consolidation of the market, as well as being of unknown foundational elements, which no sane industrialist and revolutionist would be poised to destroy such. There is the New Owerri to develop. The ancient city can be left alone with moderate modernization, while the New Owerri is open and valuable for development. Governor Okorohca has to take the Government House to New Owerri and expand the Emperor Nero’s Rome there, and leave the ancient city of Rome for the Romans or let him live and behave like the Romans.
If you enter Mokola and Challenge in Ibadan, Oyo State, there exist in them till date the ancient markets still vibrant and booming, without alterations and modernization by any State Governor. A town like Owerri can never exist without central markets, without modern motor parks, without mechanic villages and markets considered as tools planets. If I may ask, is EKE ONUNWA in or not in the Master Plan of the Owerri Municipal City? I have seen, studied and still remember the general master plan during previous administrations, and I am fully aware that instead of working with the said master plan, Governor Okorocha is working ante-master plan of the Owerri Municipal City, because he is in charge and wants his status to be felt.
EKE UKWU OWERRI is among the structures existing before the master plan and accommodated in it, just as some structures being demolished today are contained in the master plan. Since these are so, what are the bases of the demolitions? Is it not for vindication and vendetta? Has Okorocha thought of the hardship it will cost Imolites to move around just to buy ordinary vegetable? Just as man cannot live without basic needs and amenities of life, no society can exist without such structures and amenities as school, market, church, recreation centres, ICT centres, sports arena, motor parks, mechanic villages, etc., located in such city.
Every city in Nigeria has traffic jam, but modern approaches entail constructing fly-overs, underway, by-passes, and diversions of sundry types, etc. Demolishing such structures outside the master plans of the city is like hijacking the destiny of a child because one has the spiritual wherewithal. It is unfair, though relative law may insinuate such right to the Governor, but no conscience- The highest court and law; where man is alone with his God, permits such.
Even if such has assumed legal foothold, the Eternal Law upon which Owerri ancient city and its structures were founded, does not allow that for the ancestors and founders of Owerri City will certainly rise from ancestry to lance revenge on the persons and families that have dared them.
The gods are angry and the mortal man glorying in vile deeds recourse to nonexistent and generated laws to support the dissolution of Eternal Laws. These, my co-citizens, must backfire! Isi kote ebu, ogbaa ya. The gods of Owerri city are angry. The kingdom has been desecrated. The ancient foundations where the forefathers commune in transactions and transitions with their survivals are being ripped off in broad day light. The gods are irate, furious and bellicose. There will be doom. There will be cataclysm.
I foresee grand State tragedy if Okorocha dares to accomplish his avowals in Owerri capital city. A Waterloo is within that will swallow any play-god in the land. Let there be no destructive rain again otherwise, there will also be sun rays on the rubbles after the rain.