The governor of Imo State, Ikedi Ohakim without mincing words has made himself unlikable to majority of Imo people by his untoward actions and inactions. Since the inception of his administration in 2007, I have tried to restrain myself from constructively pointing out my grouse with him hoping that he will turn over a new leaf, but all to no avail.
The fact is, he has earned for himself the notoriety of being a political deceiver of the highest order. A point in view was when he purportedly deceived Mr. President; Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan that he has started rehabilitating the road that runs from Nkwala (one of the prominent weekly markets in Ngor-Opkala LGA), Eziama, Ntu, Umuohie, Umuneke (where the council secretariat is located) and Ngwuru. This road forms a T-junction to Owerri, Okpala and Owerri Nta road apart from numerous junctions along that axis. This T-junction is close to Ulakwo Junction and Park. It is about a kilometer if you are coming from Ulakwo to Okpala and on the right hand side.
While the governor was coming back from the airport some time ago, where he had gone to welcome the President, I gathered from a reliable source that he pointed at the road that connects Umuneke, Ugwuru, Umuohie, Ntu, Eziama and Nkwoala to Mr. President as one of the roads he was building. It is important to note here that the construction equipment was pulled out of the construction site after the President had gone back to the seat of power, Aso Rock. The truth is that what Ohakim did was to rehabilitate some dangerous spots along that road but this was not exhaustive, because from Umuneke to Nkwola where there are also potholes were left unattended. Why?
This road was initially constructed by past military regime. The road, which is a state road, was later constructed and continued from Umuohie Ngor to Nkwala Market by the current democratic dispensation. The present state of the road is better described as deplorable not minding the lackadaisical, cunning and deceptive move by the Chief Executive in Imo State to rehabilitate it.
What is most painful to me are the poorly executed road rehabilitation projects that have been captured in Ohakim’s campaign billboard just to earn the votes of the electorates in addition to other irritating attributes of his and flaws. For instance, the above mentioned road that leads to Ngor-Okpala Local Government Area has been captured in one of his deceptive billboards located at that strategic T- Junction. Initially, “Ochina falsehood” wanted the whole world to know or believe that the road was to be dualized but this was not to be as the road project was abandoned before it could get to half a kilometer. My heart bleeds for most rural based Local Governments Areas and its inhabitants in Imo State especially Ngor Okpala Local Government Area as there is virtually nothing to lift their dampened spirit up.
Is it our roads; which in great state of disrepair, school structures; which are a shadow of their former self, youth empowerment; which has taken flight, health centres; which are crawling on their knees. While some state Governors have initiated free education in their various states by even going the extra mile of providing free sandals, exercise books, school uniforms and bags to pupils and students of both primary and secondary schools, what is saddening is the increase in school fees of undergraduates who attend University of Imo State (IMSU) by Ohakim administration. The effect of the increment is gnawing of teeth by most parents who struggle too hard to pay the said fee which is allegedly put at one hundred and fifty thousand naira.
Ohakim should as a matter of urgency borrow a leaf from the governor of Rivers State, Chibuike Amaechi, Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State, Sullivan Chime of Enugu, Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State.
Again, it is most sad to observe that a federal road that runs through Okpala, Eziama, Nkwala Market and Amala to Rivers State has also been captured in Governor Ohakim’s political campaign billboard as one of the roads he has constructed. However, this is one of the twenty first century nauseating falsehood being peddled by Ochina what I do not know.
With various allegations of misdemeanor; abuse of a man of God, his subjects in the person of Samuelson Iwuoha and Mrs Elizabeth Udoudo, inability to develop rural areas for socio-economic activities, litany of corruption related petitions, deceptive politicking and so on, I do not nurse any doubt in my mind that Ohakim would be an irredeemable gubernatorial product to market to the electorate in Imo state as he has shot himself in the leg.
Jude Ude commenting in an article with the title “Governor Ikedi Ohakim: The Example Of Ondo State Government written by one Ikenna Samuelson Iwuoha, Jun 07 2010 said, “The fact that Ikedi Ohakim is worse than DEJI is not in doubt. We have an acclaimed 419ner, looter,criminal and a public enemy as the Governor in Imo State. We all know that the powers that be in the PDP are protecting this fool, but for how long they will do it, then we are waiting to see. I have always said that no amount of falsehood or campaign from people like Steve Osuji, Kenneth Uwadi, Obi Okereke, Sam Uzowum, Dr. E Dibia and Mr. J. Onyeakoh can succeed in selling or imposing this impostor, criminal and 419ner on the good people of Imo State. They tell us that Ohakim has achieved heaven and earth in Imo State, but they have never succeeded in substantiating their claim.”
Prophecy: What I do know for sure is, your investigation by the appropriate authority may tarry, but the petition dossier on your corrupt practices is in a safe place for future action. By the time the lid to your can of worms is opened, either by EFCC or ICPC, your fate may be worse than James Ibori’s.
Njamanze Fidel a political activist and commentator writes from Ihite, Imo State