The Nwodo Clan, Politics of Ingratitude, Deception, and Nepotism.
The guiding political principles of the Nwodo family are: clannishness, ingratitude, deception, and nepotism. These vicious political philosophies of the Nwodo clan did not start today. Their great grandfather, Chief Nwodo Nwokoro, was one of the foot soldiers to Eze Onyeama N'Eke—the absolute paramount ruler of the entire Northern Igbo during the colonial days. Chief Nwodo Nwokoro was recruited by Onyeama partly because Ukehe is one of the sons of Ojebeogene and also within the Agbaja or Udi/Ezeagu area. The Ojebeogene clan is made of up: Ebe, Abor, Ukana, Awhum, Okpatu, Umuoka, Umulumgbe and Ukehe. Apart from Ukehe, which is in Igbo-Etiti Local Government Area, the members of the Ojebeogene kindred are found in Udi Local Government Area. It is understandable, therefore, that the emergence of Nwodo Nwokoro, the grandfather of the Nwodos, as a traditional ruler of Ukehe was made possible by Eze Onyeama N'Eke. The relationship between the duo, Eze Onyeama and Nwodo Nwokoro, got soured when the later betrayed the former by forming alliance with the enemies of Onyeama. As a result of this betrayal, Onyeama expelled the Nwodos from the Agbaja clan. Owing to this expulsion and the fact that the Ojebeogene people of Udi are more enlightened and cannot be subdued by the power-hungry Nwodo clan, they decided to align themselves with the Nsukka people, who they considered less politically suave. Indeed, their thinking was that an alignment with the Nsukkas who were less developed at that time would give them a vast area of unenlightened people to control and dominate. The ojebeogenes in Udi had and still have heavy weights that will give the Nwodos a run for their money. So, it is politically convenient for them to climb the rooftops and shout to every Nsukka man that they are more Nsukka than the real Nsukkas.
Presently, the Nwodo family came to real political limelight when in 1991 the Waawa people led by Chief C.C. Onoh—the Aninefungwu 1 of Waawa land—decided to cede power to them on behalf of the Nsukkas. They were overwhelmingly supported to the extent that when Chief Joe Nwodo who was about winning the election was banned he effortlessly brought out his younger brother, Okwesilieze Nwodo (who was barely managing his life as a failed medical doctor in one ill-equipped clinic at Ziks Avenue, Enugu) to continue with the gubernatorial contest. Still, the Waawa people led by Aninefungwu transferred their supports to him, Okwesilieze.
Immediately after Okwesilieze won the election, he introduced his so-called politics of triangular equilibrium: the then Enugu State was made up of three zones comprising Enugu, Nsukka and Abakaliki. The triangular equilibrium was meant to ensure tripodic balance amongst the three zones. But instead of being fair to all or any of the zones, the Nwodo government practically brought in his brothers and sisters led by the thuggish Nnia Nwodo and Dr. Grace Obayi to control the affairs of Enugu State. Nwodo never achieved anything apart from junketing from the State of Arkansas to other states in Uncle Sam's country in the guise of searching for mythical investors. No single investment was attracted to Enugu State. No infrastructure was put in place in Enugu by the Nwodo government. This failure continued until Abacha sacked them. The Nwodos never did anything for anybody; not even to his Ukehe people. In the 1992 budget of Enugu State, Nwodo approved about twenty million naira for the reconstruction and upgrading of Ogbede Market, which is in his home town, Ukehe, to an international status. Unfortunately, he never built anything. Ogbede has not changed. Rather, the market is deteriorating everyday. What Nwodo achieved as a governor was corrupt and unlawful enrichment of the members of the Nwodo clan. Nnia, Grace, and other Nwodos controlled everything for themselves and their cronies alone.
One other thing he achieved was his blatant failure to pay salaries of civil servants. The height of it was that for over six months immediately after the swearing-in ceremony of the members of Enugu State House of Assembly, Nwodo refused to neither pay salaries nor give accommodation to the lawmakers. Instead, Nwodo quartered the legislators at a mosquito, cockroach and rat-infested motel. Even in this sub-standard motel, Nwodo refused to pay for the two months spent by the lawmakers at the motel. In fact, the lawmakers were forcibly removed from the motel by a group of thugs led by the thuggish Nnia Nwodo. His grievance was that house members refused to approve a highly inflated budget prepared by his elder brother. In fact, the corrupt disposition of the Nwodos reached its peak when they buried cars and money in their father's graveyard after Abacha hounded them out of government. They had to do this because they are trained professionals who have refused to practise their profession but politics of stealing and deception. Nnia and Joe who are lawyers do not go to court. They cannot move ordinary 'motion' in a court room. The one who called himself a medical doctor has for long abandoned medical practice since he tested the forbidden fruits.
When PDP was formed, Okwesilieze Nwodo was brought in by Dr. Alex Ekwueme to become the pioneer Secretary of the Party. Things went wrong for Nwodo when he got himself into the National Identity Card scam. He was accused of embezzling millions of naira belonging to the Nigerian people. The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) took him up. He was charged to court. Seeing that his credibility has been tarnished, like a prostitute he left PDP; but only to be cleansed and brought back by some benevolent forces who thought Nwodo like St. Paul on his was to Damascus had changed. Alas! They got it wrong. The bitter truth is that a leopard never changes its colours. The Attorney General of the Federation entered a nolle prosequi withdrawing the case against him (Nwodo). This gave him the needed respite to politically position himself for the post of PDP Chairman. Nonetheless, the legal implication of the Nolle Prosequi is that Nwodo can still be arrested and charged to court on the same criminal allegations against him.
In ensuring that Nwodo emerges the PDP Chairman, Gov. Sullivan Chime of Enugu State rallied his fellow Governors around him; and supported his aspiration as PDP Chairman. Sullivan's miscalculation was that as an Enugu man, Nwodo would use his position to help the state. He (Sullivan) forgot the antecedents of the political ingrates in Nwodo clan. He was made a PDP Chairman. Upon swearing, Nwodo again brought his thuggish younger brother, Nnia, who is not and has never being a member of PDP to run the show in Enugu. Nnia recommended the sacking of PDP executive, claiming it was illegal. This 'illegal' executive granted Okwesilieze Nwodo his much-need 'waiver' to qualify him as a National Chairman of PDP. The real reason for the purported dissolution was to hand over the party structure of Enugu State to the Nwodo family. Nnia wants to be Governor. Okwesilieze's wife wants to go to Senate. If a position meant for the Nsukkas are not filled by the Nwodos or any of their relations by marriage (like the Obayis) no one else in Nsukka is good. Everything meant for the Nsukkas must come to the Nwodo family. They are not happy with their kinsman, Barr. Eugene Odoh, because he is the speaker of Enugu state House of Assembly. They are not happy with Vita Abbah because he is the chairman of Enugu state PDP. They are not happy that the performing Senator Ayogu Eze, who in their perverted imagination should be their driver, is now a distinguished senator ably representing Enugu North at the Upper Chamber. They are not happy that Sullivan (who gave them political life after Chimaroke had crushed them into political oblivion and irrelevance) is the governor of Enugu State. They are not happy that in truth and honesty Enugu has started working under the government of our able governor, His Excellency, Sullivan Chime. They are not happy that even a Nwodo goat is not the governor of Enugu State. They are not happy that a Nwodo goat is not the in Senate, House of Representative, and Enugu State House of Assembly. Foolishly, they have forgotten they are not God. They have forgotten they are mere mortals. Their vain arrogance, pride and unfounded relevance are always anchored on the fact they dominate the Nsukka people. This is very unfortunate. An average Nsukka man and woman should stand and tell these people they are not Nsukka. They are ojebeogenes; and should simply go back to where they belong. Nsukka don't be deceived.
When Chimaroke Nnamani came to power he flushed out the Nwodos from PDP because he knows what a political parasite and nuisances they are. Presently, the Nwodo family is fighting with all resources within their reach to unseat Gov. Sullivan Chime of Enugu State. The true reason for moving against Governor Chime is not for non-performance. Every living soul in Enugu can testify that Governor Chime is God-sent to the people of Enugu State. He has brought enormous infrastructural developments to the state. Road network in Enugu is no longer what it used to be. There are street lights all over Enugu. Workers are paid as and when due. Security of lives and properties are secured. This is unlike when Okwesilieze Nwodo was Governor of old Enugu State. The Nwodos are political ingrates who never appreciate the good done to them by anybody. The Nwodos are hypocrites. The conscription of Ukehe into Nsukka is designed solely for their selfish interest: to corner every opportunity that comes to the Nsukka people; knowing that such is not feasible within Udi area. They are pseudo Kennedys. Always aping the powerful US family when none of them had tested the Presidency of this country; when none of them is as honest as any of the Kennedys; when none of them is as selfless as any of the Kennedys; when in fact they are as corrupt as any power-hungry African despot. And let me warn Jonathan, Okwesilize Nwodo is a mole in PDP. He is a fifth columnist in the party working for reactionary elements that want Jonathan out of office by all means necessary. Jonathan should beware of Okwesilieze Nwodo. His Excellency, President Jonathan, should know that Okwesilieze is the Shakespearian Makus Brutus in his government. To avoid Julius Caesar's exclamation of 'Et tu, Brute' in his moment of need and betrayal by the greedy and envious Brutus who was recruited by the wicked Cassius, Jonathan must weed Nwodo out of PDP. He is Judas Iscariot, Brutus and Cassius of this government. It is very clear that he is working for Jonathan's opposition because he thinks that handing over the Presidency to a Northerner will consolidate his position as a PDP chairman; because Northerners are likely going to go for his seat once Jonathan emerges as President after 2011 election. That is why he is hell-bent in causing crisis in some of the states that are solidly behind Jonathan: so as to give a Northerner the chance to win the PDP primaries and subsequently the general election. But all these demonic political machinations of the Nwodo people will surely collapse like packs of cards.
By Silas Ogbodo