OPEN LETTER TO MAXIMUS UBA
Dear Maximus Uba,
I have been reading your written items, as it appears on different websites, newspapers and magazines in Nigeria about Chief Dr Ikedi Ohakim, the Governor of Imo State.You must have known by now that I am a fan of Governor Ikedi Ohakim.I am a fan of Ohakim because a huge infrastructural development and regeneration is going on in Imo state and the man behind this larger than life developmental initiative is the Ikedi Ohakim that you are mounting campaign of calumny against. .I am a fan of Ohakim because I want the best for Imo people and Ohakim is doing excellently well. I don't care about the Party he is into or the one he is not into, all I care about is the man himself and what he is doing for the people. I want to ask you one question, Maximus Uba:are you really from Imo state? This, I doubt. I think, you lack adequate information about Imo people and their indigenous democratic tradition, or you deliberately act misinformed about Imo State.
I remember reading so many books on journalism in the course of my study in that profession. In Journalism, you do what it takes to get the truth and you lay it before the public, because the public has a right to know the truth. You say you are a journalist, but you are consenting to and actively promoting big fat lies about Imo State.It is necessary for media operators to be men of unquestionable characters, pure conscience with good moral exhibition in order to be excellent drivers of society. The duty of the journalist is to tell the news by seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues. Conscientious journalists from all media and specialties strive to serve the public with thoroughness and honesty. Professional integrity is the cornerstone of a journalist's credibility. Journalists ought to be dedicated to ethical behavior.You cannot continue to publish 'yeye' stories and expect us to regard you as a journalists.
Your myriad of dragonish write-ups against Ohakim,according to sources is over 180.You have labeled Ohakim a lot of names and have convicted him on so many occasion without the consent of the court. Your seditious write-ups are to cast aspersions to the minds of those who may be in mutual relationship with the governor to begin to doubt if it were the same man they know. You have cast venoms, vituperations and vilifications on Ohakim so much that it has warranted this open letter to you. Where do I begin to talk about the many untrue things you have written about Imo state and about Ohakim? It's like you are a 'lie maniac'. How do I blame you? How do I open the eyes of a man who is already dancing blindly the tunes of his paymaster .How do I strengthen your faith on the present Imo State Government when all you desire to see or hear is that Ohakim has vacated the Government house for your paymaster. Each time I read about your pains over Ohakim, I understand the pangs of your dashed aspirations and unreasonable expectations that have quickly become pipe dreams and impossibilities. Stop all these 'yeye' stories about our Governor. You are toying with the intelligence of Ndi-Imo.
Uba, why can't you be happy with the new Imo state? Have you been to Imo State recently? I hear you move from one hotel to another in Abuja while claiming to write from Mbaise in Imo state. Better still, have you been to Owerri, the Imo State capital recently? If you lived in Mbaise as you claim, you will confess that Imo State has experienced and is still experiencing a robust make-over. Visit Owerri, the Imo State capital and see work in progress and wonders in motion. This was the Owerri, which in more than eight years, suffered under the putrid stench of neglect and deprivation. This was the Owerri - the capital city of Eastern heartland, which had hitherto, been turned into a refuse dumping city. This Owerri suffered under the weight of humiliating successive mal-administrations in the past.
Because of the endowed leadership role in Ohakim, Imo people voted him as their governor, which started right from his hometown of Okohia.Why are you after Ohakim?Did you in any way sponsored his election campaign? After the era of visionary and selfless leaders like Awolowo, Azikiwe and Ahmadu Bello, we are lumbered with the misfortune of having so-called usurpers and corrupt leaders in Nigeria who took to corruption and the euphoria of office like a pig to filth. They stink to high heavens and they carry a lot of innocent blood on their hands and head. Refreshingly, Ikedi Ohakim, the Imo State Governor is a departure from this filth. He is a breath of fresh air. He is so different that we are happy that we have him as Governor of Imo State. He is genuinely and determinedly interested in changing the lives of Ndi-Imo for good. That is why I am one of his fans.
Why are you sending so many 'yeye' and unguarded message against the person of Ohakim as if Ohakim took away your piece of land.Or maybe you are a hungry man fighting for Ghana-Must-Go .Sorry, Uba, politics in Imo State is no more cash and carry that comes in containers like consigned goods. Do you think that Imo politics that is supposed to be about public policies and the good of the greatest number of the majority of the populace is all about personal business between you and your sponsors? So you are after Ghana must go? Sorry. Not in this present dispensation.
Imo people are watching you and your paymasters. You think we don't know you? You are a man of questionable character. Are you not that same Maximus Uba that played 'yeye' role during the days of the Chief Arthur Nzeribe's yeye Association for Better Nigeria (ABN) which scuttled the freest and fairest election of Abiola .You are that same Maximus Uba ,who served as the 'yeye' media aide to Senator Arthur Nzeribe where he projected the 'yeye' Abacha-for-live-Presidency at the detriment of his conscience. You are that same Maximus uba who served as media vanguard of the Abacha junta and you dished out 'yeye' articles on the media to back up the former maximum ruler's stupidity. You conned huge amounts of money out of Abacha; help to organize fake five million man-march, produced Abacha rice, Abacha TV and Abacha badges and you swore you would commit suicide if Abacha refused to be President of Nigeria
You are the pot that is always calling the kettle black. Chief Arthur Nzeribe severed his relationship with you when he discovered that you are a dangerous and unreliable man. Rather than laundering the image of Nzeribe you got him more enemies than friends. You later found your way into the political garrison of Andy Uba and became his media adviser. You were booted out for insincere behaviors. You then joined Senator Ifeanyi Ararume and you became his propaganda machine. We can tell a failure by the way he criticizes success. Since joining Senator Ararume,you have been criticizing Ohakim left,front and center.First your thinking was that Ohakim will fail in the electoral court dispute and that your man Ararume will become Governor but you were wrong.Now you are looking at 2011.Ofcourse,you will still fail.
You think we don't know that you begged Ikedi Ohakim for the position of Press Secretary and his refusal made you to start criticizing him? You think we don't know that you have been lobbying for appointment as a member of the Local government Area Transition Committee in the State and that you have approached the governor to sponsor your overseas scholarship. You have persistently shown that you have a personal war to settle with Ohakim for refusing you appointment.You think we don't know about your so many shady deals?
Ohakim is a performing governor and deserves respect. When Ohakim stepped in, he decided to begin first with, sweeping clean, the dirt-infested city. To this end, he ordered the dismantling of all the shacks and illegal structures that dotted the city and state. Thereafter, he banned Okada drivers from operating in certain parts of the Owerri metropolis. To ease the pain on the average Okada rider and users in Owerri, Ohakim introduced a functioning intra-city transport service. To actualize this, he flooded the city with luxury buses. He then followed with affordable taxi-system, which now has spread, to other cities in the East. Governor Ikedi Ohakim began a road expansion network that has given Owerri, the much-needed breathing space under which other goodies would follow.
Rural parts of Imo we learnt have not been left out under the Ohakim developmental programs. Imo Rural Roads Maintenance Agency (IRROMA) is busy opening up villages with new rural or old roads some of which have been hitherto clogged and or overgrown with weeds. Launching the venture in November, the able governor said his aim was to bring back the old method where members of the Public Works Department worked diligently to beautify every nook and cranny of Imo.
Ohakim started the rebuilding of Owerri from the scratch. He destroyed shacks that dotted the streets of Owerri and thereby restored its diminishing topography. Ohakim sent the notorious timber shed packing and promised that a better edifice would rise from its former place. Not done, within two years of assumption of office, Ohakim has opened up road networks in several parts of the state using his environmental sanitation agency as his springboard. Uncoordinated erection of billboards has been banned; old and unauthorized ones have been removed.
Roads into Owerri and roads out of it are being dualised. Education, has received a boost as redundant and dead wood teachers have been replaced by well-trained teachers. An Education Development committee has been set up to address and redress the education problems of Imo State. Now, all this have happened within two years of Ohakim's stay in office,yet you are busy calling the Governor names. At this pace, the developmental initiative of the Ohakim administration would have definitely reached every nook and cranny of the state within the shortest possible period
The leadership qualities of Ohakim is seen everywhere as he has within a short period resuscitated industries that had seemed until now moribund. The Standard Shoes Industries Limited is one of such and the, Adapalm, another. It is also on record that the young governor has entered into agreement with such countries as China and Malaysia, for industrial development of Imo State - in two years he got onto the saddle of Imo leadership. What then do we expect when and if Ohakim stayed for full term in office? Or when he is voted in again in 2011 to continue his good works?
During his tenure as a Commissioner, Ohakim affected the lives of Imo sons and daughters in no little ways. In Lagos State where Ohakim was living before he was voted governor, the story has not changed that Ohakim still remains humble, humane, humanistic, affable, adorable, and kind.You have accused our Governor of too many things that were later discovered to be false.Currently, Imo State House of Assembly constituted a five-man ad-hoc committee to probe your allegations that the Governor looted 4.2 billion naira. The panel is required to submit its report on September 30. You said that Ohakim expended N1.2 billion public funds for his reception and defection to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). and that he has mansions in the United States (U.S.) and South Africa.You said that he transported some emirs from the state to the North after their meeting in the state at N1 billion and an alleged financial inducement of about N2 billion to a senator and a member of the House of Representatives. Uba you should produce the facts of your allegations,which I know you don't have for I have come to see you as a pathological liar but where you are not able to show evidence to back your claims, I suggest that you be prosecuted one and for all for wrongfully inciting Ndi-Imo against their governor.
-Kenneth Uwadi writes from Mmahu-Egbema in Imo State,Nigeria