By David Agwalla (Okwadike)
Just 5 days to the 2023 federal elections. This is once again, when we will be required to perform our civic function of deciding the people we entrust our lives and those of our children to, for at least the next 4 to 8 years of our lives.
We have another opportunity to look around and ask ourselves if we have done well, as a people in politics, what has been our problem with lack of development and how we can overcome the situation. *By people, l mean lkwu-Ato, comprising Imenyi, lsu-Amawu and Oguduasa*. What do we have to show or boast of, for the past 24 years of uninterrupted democratic rule in Nigeria? *We have absolutely nothing because we are yet to come together to review our participation in politics, take stock, think of what’s actually wrong or what to blame for our prolonged backwardness, in form of infrastructure development, lack of efficient healthcare system for our people, good schools to train our children, jobs for our teeming youths, functional markets for our rural dwellers to sell their goods, etc*. Unfortunately, none of these were done and now we are faced with elections, so confused and divided, along party lines, about the direction to go or who to vote for to effectively represent us at the centre.
The fact is that we need to ask ourselves why we do well as individuals, but as a people we don’t.
*We cannot do well as a people in politics, if we don’t elect, from among us, good, patriotic, unbiased and committed leaders, that can take our people to the next level*. Politics have so divided us and sometimes, cause us to hate one another. Those who try to encourage or help are abused, called names and discouraged, because we think they are arrogant, disrespectful, and too young or just “who does he think he or she is to direct or push us around. But those attributes are required to move the people, with the support of elders and those who know.
*We must elect electable good political leaders of our extraction or we are not going anywhere*. Period
We started well in 1999, when our elder, rtd Gen lke Nwachukwu was elected to the Senate to represent Abia North and Hon Uche Maduako to the House of Reps for lsuikwuato and Umunneochi. Suddenly and after just the first 4 years, our brother left his Senate seat to fight for the Presidency, neither much unprepared nor properly consulted. He lost both of course. Chukwumerije took over from him as Senator and kept the seat for about 12 years. He even died as a sitting Senator.
Hon Uche Maduako, on his own part, was in the FHoR for only 8 years, when a delegation of ndi Eze from Umunneochi came calling and were able to convince both our own Eze/elders and Uche’s father, late Chief JD Maduako, that he should vacate the seat for Hon Nkiru Onyejeocha, who as at now has been there for 16 years and wants to go for another 4 years, to make it 20. Interestingly, both Hon Nkiru and late Sen Chukwumerije are/were from Isuochi, in Umunneochi. The rest is history they say.
Unfortunately we failed to come together, to agree on or about anything before now.
*As we approach this federal elections on Saturday 25th of Feb, 2023, we must reflect, to think of what we have to say is our own, in all the elective positions up for grabs*.
We do not have a governorship or Senatorial candidates from, lkwu-Ato in the election. But we have more than one candidate for the House of Representatives and we know them. *If we must have someone elected, as our own, to help develop our infrastructure and attract federal presence, we must all be united and vote together for one person among those contesting*. If we do so and cause our people to all do the same, for the sake of our future and those of our children, we are most likely going to have the FHoR seat, as the only position we can call our own.
*Dr Onyinye Kay Rufus-Obi, we all know, is well qualified to get our votes in this election*. By her background, exposure and contacts, she’s the best candidate out there to achieve the desired results.
*We must close ranks and rise above all political and sectional boundaries to achieve something in politics, to move our communities forward*.
We cannot achieve anything if we remain so divided.
Chief David Agwalla from Isikwuato writes from PortHarcourt
Picture shows Dr Onyinye Kay Rufus OBI, front-line House of Reps candidate from APGA for Isuikwuato Umunneochi federal constituency