The Chatham House Charade
National leaders who find themselves wilting under the withering criticisms by members of the media, would do well not to take such criticism personally but to regard the media as their allies in keeping the government clean and honest, its services. Corazon Aquino
When the pursuit of instant fame beclouds ones sense of reasoning, displaying terrifying ignorance becomes inevitable.
It beggars belief that an immigrant, in pursuit of national attention could allow himself to be used in far away London as an object of distraction to advertise his ignorance to the world by interrupting the people's governor, His Excellency, Owelle Anayo Rochas Okorocha, guest of the Prestigious Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House, London, while delivering a lecture on the topic: Human Capital and the Education Initiative: A Case Study of Imo State, on Wednesday, 9th March.
The video which went viral almost immediately on YouTube and other social media sites attracted sticks, knocks and uncharitable expletives from social media activists who have vowed never to see the Midas touch of the people's governor in whatever he embarks on. Some of our local newspapers were not left out in the charade, in their attitude of pettiness, flew same kite with social media warlords with similar headline, “Okorocha disgraced in London”.
Was the people's governor disgraced? Without watching the video, one would conclude the pestiferous absurdity of the intruder's action disgraced the people's governor as speculated but after watching the video, I had some difficulties trying to comprehend what really, was the intention of the intruder? Is he actually a Biafran sympathizer venting his anger on the fate of those agitating for the Sovereign State of Biafra here in Nigeria or looking for a cheap popularity to the testamental delight of media cameras in far away London?
If the immigrant could break British protocols only to come face to face with His Excellency to ask why he had not declared support for Biafra, shows he does not really know what is involved in the movement and needs to be taught how and where to channel his grievances, and how not to cause a charade in Chatham House.
I was inundated with calls from all parts of the world after the video had gone viral with similar questions: “Does Owelle hold the codes to Biafra's liberation and why would anyone want to malign a governor in the name of agitating for Biafra”?
Waving Biafran flag is not enough to prove ones membership of the movement. The last time I checked the agitators of Biafra have never encouraged thuggery or the use of violence to press home their demands; they limit themselves within the ambits of the law. When they came to Owerri for their demonstration last year, Imo State government provided them with the necessary support and logistics, including security and since the inception of this administration; Biafran agitators have not had any casualty in Imo State. If the governor could do all these which is within the laws of our nation, why would anyone blame him for what is practically impossible?
His Excellency was elected Governor of Imo State in Nigeria and had sworn to abide, protect and defend the integrity of the State and by extension the nation. Why would anyone expect such a detribalized, urbane and passionate humanitarian whose philanthropic gesture in education across the nation is unrivalled to lead the agitation for the Sovereign State of Biafra? That will be an aberration, constitutionally, that's an impeachable and treasonable offense that no governor would ever dare to get himself involved in, and the people's governor is not an exception.
As for those fault-finding media apologists who have been obfuscating in ignorance on print and social media that anyone could be called upon to deliver a speech at the Chatham House and are yet to see reasons why the governor should honour such an invitation, the truth is, Chatham House is not an institution for knaves, miscreants and under performers, but rather, for accomplished men/women who have etched their names in the hall of the triumphant as selfless leaders in their countries. It is an honour and a rare privilege to be invited as a guest speaker to such prestigious institution. Go check the profiles of those who have made it to the hallowed chambers of the Chatham House; you will come to the realization that the people's governor, His Excellency, Owelle Anayo Rochas Okorocha has joined the league of true elders that plant trees of peace even though they know they may never benefit from the shades of those trees.
With almost a million views on YouTube, what the goon in the “Chatham House Charade” has succeeded in doing is, increasing the people's governor's rising profile to the World.
Written by Hon. Uju Kingsley Chima, Deputy Chief of Staff (Operations) IMSG