Posted On: Thu 05 Sep 2019 By Ugochimereze Chinedu Asuzu
We most heartily welcome our avid and dependable readers to this week's episode of our potpourri and concise political analysis on this platform. Suffice it to say that we duly recognize and deeply appreciate those who strengthen our resolve to continue to articulate, analyze and scrutinize the workings of government, in Nigeria in general and Imo State in particular.
We welcome also our critics, mostly those of them that are passionately objective and constructive in their criticisms, even to the intensely antagonistic and subjective opposition lots, we likewise welcome you; generally everyone who is either in support or opposition to the new government in place in Imo; because like it or not, any government without opposition is actually heading to doom, simply because challenges brings out the best in articulate minds. Hence it is a trite saying that 'God chooses his brave soldiers from the valley of afflictions'; some schools of thought will likewise opine 'No pain, No gain!' Everyone is important, and needed as well.
In evaluating Ihedioha's government in Imo state for the past 100 days, it is instructive to pungently posit that it is not yet Uhuru! Anyone saying to the contrary is not a friend to this government, as the essence of good friendship is subsumed in the well known facts that your friend is at the liberty of choice to defend you at your back at all times, but then again under serious obligations to tell you the truth to your face, anyone not doing this is anything but a good friend.
Most often than not, most people, particularly political leaders or elected representatives, make the mistakes of believing that those who eulogize and flatter them with enticing words of ululations, pour encomiums and hero worship them at all times are those that really love them, and that those who most often go out of their ways to criticise them or pick holes with their policies and programs, most especially those who objectively appraise and constructively criticize them are their enemies.
On the contrary though, unmitigated, unexamined or ill-appraised praise singers or hero worshippers are amongst all, the ones that destroys any political leader or elected representatives. Unfortunately, these set of individuals form the bulk of those dear to the hearts of political leaders in our clime, only very few of them repudiates such showmanship, and pretty much see through their hypocrisy, these class of leaders also are those that doesn't feel so haughty or visit constructive criticism with vindictiveness; leaders who know their onions listens more to oppositions than they do to supporters, principally because, most often than not critics, mostly the constructive ones consciously or unconsciously charts better and more reasonable line of thoughts for the leader to take up and excel in, than the praise singers could ever do.
In this sense I enjoin elected or appointed leaders not to totally drown the voices of opposition, rather they should allow them to freely express themselves, and by so doing gradually give them cause not to criticize unnecessarily anymore; as it gets to a point in the leadership of any sound mind that his greatest admirers and subsequent defenders will be from among the opposition camp, when such begins to occur, then the leader is said to have downplayed the critics and utilized their projections to indirectly gain their confidence and support, when such happens, the opposition camp will be clearly divided into two parts of objective and subjective oppositions, at times the objective opposition elements will even be the ones defending the leading party's policies and programs, even in the camp of the opposition.
Now to the business of the day; Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha (CON), the incumbent governor of Imo state, is inarguably and incontestably a very seasoned, meticulous, articulative and positively composite mind. What's also not in contest is the fact that he meant well for Ndi-Imo na Ala-Imo, this context derives its force of implicit standing, from the standpoint of the present configuration of the leadership structure he's assembling, yes, assembling because his workforce is yet a work in progress. However, the much he has shown to Ndi-Imo so far is worthy of applause, that's not suggestive of submitting that there is no further room for improvements, most certainly there are.
Nevertheless, in very practical and objective analysis, what some opposition elements, those who are intellectually dwarfed, or intentionally myopic, that criticize unintelligently the meticulous style of governance of Emeka Ihedioha, most often I hear them say he is slow, at other times I hear them say he should face governance and not concern himself with the absurdities in office that were the identifiable hallmark of the immediate past governor/government. Then I ask such quacked minds, what exactly is governance, when one assumes leadership position, and the environment he is to operate from is littered with filth, broken down walls, damaged and faulty electrical appliances, blocked drainages and impassable terrains; are you then in all honesty advocating that he should ignore the filths and go on with governance? I mean the first test of the leadership challenge, for which his supporters or critical thinkers around him would want to see him prove his mettle at, is how he confronts the issue of his immediate filthy environment. Now, if he's unable to tackle the issue of the filthy environment facing him squarely, then doubt is easily created in the minds of the people of his capability at tackling their own environmental degradation afar off.
Basically, what a good leader should do at such point is to device means of diversifying leadership, as being faced with enormous challenges such as those enumerated above, then the need to share leadership emergencies with some credible minds becomes imperative; the people requires immediate results no doubt, but a seasoned mind will rather articulate the scenario and appropriate the workable line of action, which is not necessarily to rush at clearing up the environment frontally without recourse to the cause, therefore, while palliative measure is applied in makeshift arrangements, the major approach required further from the leader is to as well get to know the reason behind the colossal damages, here it's expected that a good leader should appoint experts, one to ascertain the degree of damages, find out the root cause(s) of the damages, and thereafter proffer plausible solutions to a lasting fix up.
If you followed my illustrations as above penned, then you won't have any further cause to attack Ihedioha on his resort to setting up of committees in different sectors of administration in the state; reason being that in Rebuilding a grossly devastated or pillaged state such as was bequeathed to him by the immediate past governor/government, then there's every need to evaluate damages and proffer plausible solutions, hence the need for setting up of volunteers and committees manned by seasoned hands/minds, who will critically analyze the situational imperatives and fashion out more detailed plans of actions, not only at remedying the bad situations now, but also forestall future occurrences.
This is not an effort to hold briefs for the government of the day, but an effort to offer a pungently objective analysis of Imo in the last 100 days and the way forward. We are all witnesses to the ruins and total degradation of the state by those who lacked basic rudiments of administration, the immediate past governor/government that totally destroyed the fabric of administrative techniques, destroyed the civil service, destroyed the labour force, destroyed standard infrastructures of the days of yore, and put up substandard rubbish in their stead, of course destroyed and defaced the entire infrastructural master plan put in place by seasoned administrators before him, only to render the state impotent in all productive angles. Therefore there's every need for the government after his to approach governance in a more refined and meticulous style, for which I am glad to say that Emeka Ihedioha is really doing now.
Though, we are in a hurry to see things done in the state, likewise in a hurry to move on with governance, nevertheless, most of us are equally in a hurry to seeing things differently done, and that's what gladdens my heart when I watch how the governance style of Ihedioha is gradually unfolding to the delight of sincere minds, for whatever is worth doing at all is most certainly worth doing well.
In my own understanding, there's bound to be a more simultaneous approach to leadership once the various committees set up by his government turns in their various reports, with the plausible solutions inherent. Nevertheless, a cursory look at Imo state under his watch, one is quick to observe a definitive paradigm shift in both ideology and implementation; such that a trip to town, in both the capital and environ witnesses vigorous positives going on; one of the issues receiving serious attention now, is the challenge of the environmental degradation, defacing of the landscape and green verges, and it gladdens the heart that they are being tackled seriously, such that in the next few months major spots in and around the city capital will be glossily green, thus showcasing the productive initiatives of the Go Clean! Go Green! of his government. While that is ongoing, the total desilting of the drainages and tunnels for easy flow of flood is gathering momentum, such that few days ago when there was a heavy downpour, the streets of Owerri which was hitherto synonymous with flooding witnessed near zero streets flooding, indicative of the fact that the government is actually getting it right in that area.
Coming to the issue of the local government administration, prior to the coming on board of the government of Ihedioha, the local government administration in Imo state was almost at a halt, comatose and redundant were the middle names of that arm of government hitherto, the governor/government in place then virtually crippled activities at that arm of government; but today, governor Emeka Ihedioha who predicated his campaign on total financial autonomy to the local governments, has since matched his words with action, such that for the past two months now, the local governments in the state receives in full their due allocations, and a trip to all the 27 local governments in the state witnesses frenzy of activities, simultaneous infrastructural and human capital development ongoing at an unprecedented level, such is the reality of the moment in all the local governments, and it's quite commendable.
The focused and articulate government of Ihedioha, in the last 100 days in office, has likewise started attracting foreign partners interest in the state, partly because of the strict adherence to due process and observance of the rule of law which is the official mantra of the Ihedioha's administration; these positives has in no small measures endeared the governor/government to international multilateral donor agencies, even the World Bank into partnering with the government in developmental initiatives, which has given birth to a Nine (9) billion naira plus erosion control in some parts of the state, also the flag off of the Rural Access Mobility Projects (RAMP), which has the potency of opening up rural access roads in the various communities of the state, cut across the three senatorial zones of the state.
This RAMP roads construction, when seen through will benefit a lot of the local governments in the state; such that a total of work on the roads will span over 380.71 Kilometers and is estimated to cost about N13.5 Billion. The new roads will spread across the local government areas of the state, thus opening up the hitherto trapped villages and towns, economic activities will spring up, even as free movement of people, goods and other essential services will be guaranteed, while unnecessary rural-urban migrations will be curbed to the barest minimum.
With the above mentioned, and other positives garnered by the Ihedioha's government in just 100 days in office, then one could be rest assured that Ala-Imo na Ndi-Imo are in safe, stable and steady hands with Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha at the saddle, then we could just simply submit too that the tempo should be maintained and consolidated further, because only the best is good enough for Ndi-Imo nakwa Ala-Imo.
Ugochimereze Chinedu Asuzu
SA, Strategic Communications, to the Hon. Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Imo State