Politics And Destruction Of Legacies Of Predecessors In Imo State


sam mbakwe
By barrister emperor iwuala, 08037247295

Few years ago, a friend gave me a book titled 48 Laws of Power written by one Robert Greene. At that time, I read the book to an extent but could not well appreciate the contents. This was because at the time I read the book, I was working in a very busy office and had little for extensive reading.
Recently, I went back and read the book very well. I did this because a lot of people who are very close to Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State have continuously told me that the Governor applies virtually all the principles in that book in his private and public life.
After reading the book the second time, I started appreciated what I have been told.
The book has 48 ‘Laws’ which are ways one can gain power and sustain it. It is all about how to use games, seduction, charm, deception, manoeuvres, subtle strategy etc to get to the ‘top and remain there’.
Therefore, anybody who wants to understand Owelle’s ‘magic’ and abracadabra, should read that book relatively and objectively.
Regretably, and excerpt from Law 41 of that book states thus:
‘What happens first always appears better and more original than what comes after…. If you succeed a great man or have a famous parent, you will have to accomplish double their achievements to outshine them…. The father must not return; he must be slain…. Never let yourself be seen as following your predecessor’s path….the simplest way to escape the shadow of the past is… to belittle it. You must adopt a ruthless strategy towards the past: burn all the books of your predecessors…. You must physically demonstrate your difference, by establishing a style and symbolism that sets you apart.’
Immediately Rochas Okorocha came to power in the year 2011, what he did was to destroy all the good legacies left by his predecessors. He even changed the colour of the state mass transit vehicles bought by his predecessors putting his identity and pictures on them as they are his.
Sometime in August 2013, a member of the Imo State House of Assembly called me on my mobile phone line. He called to draw my attention to the way the Imo State Government was destroying the road-dividers used in making the Orlu Road located in Owerri metropolis a double lane. This double lane starts from Warehouse Junction axis to Akwakuma Roundabout.
Before this legislator called, I had already observed the said demolition but refused to write on it. My reason for not writing on it then was because some of Governor Okorocha’s apologists who are still wallowing in their unfortunate delusion, were always saying that I was in the habit of ‘attacking’ their ‘Owelle’. But God knows that I have never criticized Governor Okorocha as a person before. What I have always spoke against are his policies as a governor which people condemn and term obnoxious and bad.
Interestingly, I was not surprised that the legislator called me like Nicodemus. I know the predicament many of Imo legislators under the Okorocha Administration are passing through in the state parliament. This is because these lawmakers played into the hands of a ‘vampire’ and they worst out of it. Regrettably, when a legislator who should boldly speak his mind condemning perceived wrong policies of the executive comes to an ordinary person like me, it is a clear indication that our dear state Imo is in a deep shit? That is ‘Rescue Mission’ at work.
Back to the aforementioned road-dividers on Orlu Road, at a close observation, one could see that the former road-dividers which are the type Julius Berger used in dualizing Owerri Onitsha road are gradually being removed on daily basis. They are being replaced with cave-like objects that are not up to 5 centimetre high. The irony is that it takes the state government much difficulty to remove the former road-dividers. Also, nobody knows where the removed road dividers are taken to.
A lot of people have condemned this act knowing full well that what is being used to replace the former road-dividers on that road are far more inferior in strength and quality than the removed ones. The new objects are too low that vehicles can easily climb over. What is the Okorocha Government going to achieve by removing those wonderful objects? Is it one of the applications of 48 Laws of Power?
It is well appreciated that it costs many multi-millions of Naira removing the old road-dividers and replacing them with new ones. Yet, retired primary school teachers in the state are being owed more than ten months arrears of pensions while that of their Imo Broadcasting Corporation counterparts are more than 33 months. Payment of gratuities for the above retirees is not yet ripe for ‘discussion’ until these senior citizens start seeing their monthly pensions. Also, many projects in the state are today abandoned because the Okorocha Government owes a lot of contractors who used their personal fund to start most of these projects. Yet, the state government spends millions of naira each day in the media telling the whole world that the state is very rich, contractors are well paid and that no pensioner is being owed pension. What an irony!
Therefore, it is my humble submission that the on-going replacement of road-dividers on some roads in Owerri metropolis is uncalled for as the money used therein could be used to address many abandoned sectors of the state that really need immediate attention.
Barr. Emperor N. Iwuala (Ksc)
Owerri-Based Private Legal Practitioner/Public Affairs Analyst