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This is not the time to experiment with the minority party considering that PDP has won the presidency of Nigeria. Imo State should remain connected to the center. Everybody knows that the opposition parties have lost in the contest to the ruling party in Nigeria. Particularly the parties that failed to secure reasonable number of seats in the federal house and/or senate should align themselves with the ruling party—PDP. Thus, Imo voters should be smart and ensure the state is properly positioned in this dispensation for obvious reasons.

Imo State made enviable efforts and contributed immensely in electing a PDP candidate, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, the president. For Imo to enjoy the fruits of its labor and contributions in supporting the PDP to remain in power as the ruling party, the only smart thing to do would be to elect a PDP candidate as the governor of the state. To do so is not for and about Governor Ohakim. It is about positioning the state where it can be a part of the ruling party. It is about placing the state with those who have the keys to the resources and powerhouse of the country. In addition, the governor will no longer have any reason if he fails to use the affiliation of the state with the federal government to show among other things on-going timely payment of salaries and promotion to civil servants, assistance to shoe manufacturers and traders, renovation and erection of existing and new secondary and elementary schools in all local government areas, and creation of at least 100,000 new jobs per year by the end of the term of his administration. There will be no excuse because the state has a PDP governor and a PDP president that care about her needs.

I commend the PDP on the concept of zoning in Imo. Orlu and Okigwe zones were in the past cajoled at as backward. As well many communities never saw the possibility of fielding a candidate for local government chairperson and/or state assembly. However, with the introduction of zoning—where positions for governor, local government chair, and state assembly are rotated by zones, concentration of power in the hands of only a few has given way to power sharing practices. Orlu and Okigwe probably would not have smelled the office of the governor in this generation if not for the rotational zone-based democracy. This writer sees no bad faith in establishing that kind a tool. It opens door to many citizens and their respective zones to have a chance at governing the state. Such a mechanism promotes stability. No one zone dominates power at the expense of others any longer. Why fix it if it is not broken? To sustain the system of zoning, which ensures power sharing and stability, the voters of Imo Sate have only one choice at this critical time. Their only choice is to vote PDP and re-elect Governor Ohakim to complete the turn of serving as the governor for Okigwe Zone. Once that continuity is maintained, all Imo citizens will be looking forward to 2015 when the next governor will emerge from Owerri Zone.

This is the time for the Imo people to truly give Ohakim the mandate. Instead of gambling and believing somebody else to be the messiah, the people should make a deal with Ohakim now for what exactly they need him to accomplish in the next four years. As stated elsewhere, this election should not be about Ohakim. Imo needs all the support for development from the federal government. We want all dilapidated elementary and secondary schools in Umuka (where this writer hails from) to be renovated and equipped properly for learning. Through his California based nonprofit organization, Human Development and Leadership Institute (HDLI), with the mission of using education as the tool for fighting bribery and corruption in Nigeria (see , this writer worked with shoe manufacturers for the Udenwa’s administration to establish an incubator manufacturing facility for shoe manufacturing. Governor Ohakim should make that happen under his new administration. Let us re-elect him en-masse and subject him to posterity. In the end, nobody would say that 8 years was not enough.

Dr. Johnny A. Mez (Agwumezie) is an accounting Adjunct Professor at the University of San Francisco. Email: [email protected]

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