David Mark’s Grand Welcome Home: Between Grandoise And Meditation

By Adaji Ikwue

Only yesterday, the former Senate President, Sen. David Mark, the Okpokpowulu 1, was hosted to a grand welcome in Otukpo, the capital of his Senatorial District, Benue South Senatorial District (popularly called Zone C), where thousands were seen thronging out to welcome the just ousted senator who was on his first visit to the state, after his sack at the Appeal Court.

Senator David Mark who arrived Otukpo in a rare manner via motorcade from Makurdi as against his regular style of flying into his palatial home in the heart of Otukpo on previous occasions, was casually dressed in white shirt and trouser.

The only Senator known to people of Zone C after serving for 16 years at the hallowed red chambers, arrived the Otukpo Burnt bricks Company the only government presence in the local government (even though dilapidated and abandoned by successive governments in which he played prominent roles), venue for his welcoming, in pomp and pageantry. The crowd was amazing, the number of youth present and leaders of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was unprecedented, Otukpo was painted Green, White and Red; the official colours of the PDP.

Prominent amongst those who came out to welcome Senator David Mark were the State PDP chairman, Dr. Agbo Emmanuel who led the party to its epic defeat in the just concluded polls due to is hobnobbing with the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Former Minister of interior who is embroiled in corruption issues and involved in gun running issues while also being fingered in the recent arms deal scandal alongside the ousted senator, and also host of PDP stakeholders from other Senatorial Districts led by Hon. Kester Kyenge from Benue North-East Senatorial District and Hon. Donald Ayagwer from Benue North-West Senatorial District who came in company of thousands of their supporters from their senatorial zones.

The historic entrance and motorcade led all through the town, drove to the palace of the Paramount ruler of the Idoma tribe, the Ochi’ Idoma in the heart of Otukpo where the sole senator of Idoma land was given the blessing every other deserving Idoma son gets from the Ochi who is a father to all and every idoma son and daughter who seeks such royal blessing.

The mighty entourage of visitors (visitors indeed since even Mark is an Abuja indigene who only visits during elections with his basket of promises) consisting of people from other senatorial districts, proceeded to their final destination, the square where he addressed and jollied with the people whom trailed him.

The day certainly went well, Mark was celebrated, he showed his might, those mercenaries employed by imported PDP goons got their pay, even as the busy bodying Otukpo boys who attended were helped to a good sum of five thousand Naira (not minding those ingrates who decided to fight over the injustice).

The day is surely one, every true Idoma will never forget in a hurry; a day when our own son was powerfully celebrated in our own Otukpo by visitors; a day when our own Senator David Mark humbled himself to drive on the pot hole infested roads he hitherto turned blind eye to because he could not drive like the common man but rather fly his helicopter; a day when the Idoma youth were called by “their leader” to watch him spend our 75 million ( Yes, it is ours because he got it through bamboozling us for 16 years) on outsiders.

However as glamourous and colourful and rave making this event was I was expecting the Idoma people present will ask him the following questions:

Where is the long promised Apa state?
How did he find the beautiful federal road we all use to access Otukpo from the state capital and if this is what he promised us for 16 years?

Have we been able to match our neighbours whom he has always promised to defend us from their marginalisation?

Does he intend to still import this mammoth crowd from Makurdi and Gboko for next years election?

What will he bring home now that he is no longer a principal officer not to talk of Senate President (a position that did not really benefit us)?

How I wish someone asked these simple questions. How I only wish my Idoma nation would be wiser this time.

Adaji Ikwue Writes from Adoka, Otukpo, Benue State

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