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24.10.2013 Feature Article

Ogonis Should Reject Nyesom Wike's-Led Fraudulent Development Initiative Aimed Only At Getting Votes For Jonathan

Ogonis Should Reject Nyesom Wike's-Led Fraudulent Development Initiative Aimed Only At Getting Votes For Jonathan
LISTEN OCT 24, 2013

Recent deceitful moves by a factional Rivers State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led by Felix Obuah, seeking support from the state, especially Ogonis in this circumstance has come to public attention. In partnership with Mr. Obuah and others, Mr. Nyesom Wike who was Chibuike Amaechi's Chief of Staff and current Nigeria's Supervisory Minister of Education rolled out a so-called Grassroots Development Initiative (GDI) in a bid to deceiving the people and garner support and votes for Mr. Goodluck Jonathan in 2015. Ironically, Jonathan is the precursor of Wike and his team, and the one who abandoned and refused to implement the UNEP report that will help remedy Ogoni degraded environment and restore the people with sustainable development.

Ogoni Environmental Restoration Fund (OERF) and jobs for the relegated, jobless youths and people are among the recommended good in the UNEP package so denied the people. This means Jonathan wishes backwardness, displeasure, pains and death for the oil-rich yet impoverished people whose votes he seeks. What a look down on Ogoni and peoples of good conscience!

Meanwhile, to drive home this deceptive package, according to Vol. 10 No. 39 (Oct. 2 to 8) of, on Sept. 29 at Bori, the traditional Headquarters of Ogoni nationality, masterminds of said initiative spoke in a show of force or war that is Nigerian politics. Mr. Wike and Obuah like others on their team including Ogonis such as Messrs. Lee Maeba and Kenneth Kobani haven't told the public/Ogonis if they've encouraged Jonathan to implement the UNEP report.

This report means so much to the people. It's because of Ken Saro-Wiwa's revelation of Ogoni degraded environment that $hell and Nigeria chastised him and others to death. How then will those who are Niger deltans (Ogonis) and should know the Ogoni issue ignore it, yet claimed to be interested in the development of the area; where in Ogoni is their development effort or are they just joining politics today? Not at all…they're all corrupt Nigerians like their master Jonathan.

The reason for Wike and Co.'s lies about GDI is simple: “The GDI leaders and chieftains will not cease to mobilize people to support Jonathan; we are mobilizing to support our son, brother, in-law and leader, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to continue as President come 2015. We must encourage him to run,” Wike was quoted to have said.

All the speakers who used Amaechi's banana plantation in Ogoni (most Ogonis including myself opposed while most of them in Amaechi's camp then gave support or just silent because of their interest) as punching bag also hammered the need for Ogonis to support Jonathan (who hates them) in his re-selection bid. This support they claimed or lied is to grant the people a kind of development that's never been heard of in this world.

Really; Ogoni can see or be develop by Jonathan and his gang; what about the UNEP science-based lifesaving report, sustainable development he denied the people? We can see their lies through them when matched with reality…so who is fooling who when we know all of these crooks?

Without equivocation the so-called Grassroots Development project is centered round support and vote for Jonathan who doesn't merit one vote from Ogonis. Let me reiterate that most of these speakers including Wike and Maeba were part of Amaechi when he initiated the banana plantation. It's also on record that Ogonis don't hate banana; it's one of the many crops/fruits they cultivate for subsistence and export like many groups or nations in the world led by India according to reports.

These people/nations aren't monkeys or slaves as Maeba and Kobani whose development efforts during their time as government officials can't be seen anywhere impacting Ogonis, respectively claimed against this plantation. In short banana is considered one of the healthiest foods on earth, even though it's reported to have certain enzymes that could cause allergies depending on quantity taken and the porosity or receptive nature of one's body mechanism.

Overall, banana gives us vitamin B6, potassium, magnesium and fiber to mention a few. What Ogonis who opposed the plantation wants is simply a different project that will not take too much land which is already scares, and could very well impact the people like those Amaechi established or moved from Port Harcourt to his place, Ubima. Ogoni position isn't the hypocritical commentaries oozing from Wike and Co.

While I respect Mr. Wike and Co., as human beings and recognize their rights to have opinions, and while looking for their daily bread can persuade, mobilize any group of people within their area of jurisdiction to support their cause or vote their party or factional candidate, Jonathan for instance.

I like majority of Ogonis frowns at the dishonesty and calculated deceit that is the subliminary message to the suffering people and considering their record and history toward Ogoni development. Ordinarily, any group tagged with grassroots development initiative will be taken seriously and embraced by all well-meaning people.

When put into context and reality those behind the current initiative and their purpose, the conclusion, which most Ogonis already feared is that, it's for political reasons only. That reason is to win the broken heart of Ogonis to help vote and elect Jonathan for a second term.

Why vote the same man you supported but turned around to stab you in the back saying, “You aren't worth living,” and why vote Jonathan to encourage corruption, insecurity, lack of campaign or governing-promise delivery and general development, which are core factors for Nigeria's backwardness? Why must Ogonis vote Jonathan when he's conspicuously demonstrated to them that they're on their own not minding the environmental hazard and extermination threats facing them?

How can a cloth washed and spread to dry in the night do as wished if when spread in the morning under sunlight can't dry; what miracle can Jonathan perform than becoming more corrupt, protecting corruption and enrich Ijaw militants? What magic can Jonathan cause than promoting lawlessness, and serve as buffer to his surrogates such as Wike who is used as puppet to causing confusion in Rivers State alongside Obuah, others because his original master, Amaechi who recommended him for ministerial position chooses as of right to not support Jonathan in his second term bid, though rigged election in the state to deliver for him in 2011?

I thought people are saying Nigeria is democratizing; if true, how come Jonathan and others don't understand what free will or right to choice means; must every Niger deltan, every Nigerian support Jonathan? Backwardness and close-mindedness na wah…you be real curse!

Note also that Mr. Maeba was credited with a dishonest or ignorant mention of UNEP report and Ogoni cleanup (none of them mentioned at the Bori rally) at the Tai rally (Oct. 13) after they were criticized on Facebook for not caring about such important and soul lifting project yet claiming a development initiative is underway.

Maeba was reported to have said in Vol. 10 No. 41 (Oct. 16 to 22) of that, “the establishment of the Banana Plantation was a deliberate attempt by the Rivers State Government to deny the Ogoni people of the UN recommended compensation and sanitization of the Ogoni contaminated soil.” He's was quoted to have said: “The United Nations after listening to the cry of the Ogonis agreed that the soil of the Ogoni is contaminated and must be cleaned up and compensated. But, when the compensation team arrived from New York, Pharaoh (referring to Gov Amaechi) led a team of agriculturists and went to establish a banana farm, to tell them that our soil is good that they should not pay compensation and clean up the land.”

Maeba's position above is, of course, brazen lie and naked ignorance. This is a clear misinformation that misleads public opinion, interest and the Ogoni people in particular thus must be rejected and not tolerated in Ogoni politics or elsewhere. It's Jonathan, his master who has the responsibility to implement the UNEP recommendations in collaboration with $hell and other polluting corporations. Maeba is aware Jonathan knowingly, deliberately and deceitfully abandoned the UNEP report and crookedly replaced it with a dead-on arrival agency: Hydrocarbon Pollution Restoration Project (HYPREP). So Maeba lied because he didn't understand what UNEP is or does. UNEP doesn't pay compensation; the group didn't come from New York to pay Ogonis contrary to his claim and it also can't on its own implement reports of the Ogoni nature it undertook. Rather, governments commission the United Nations agency based in Nairobi Kenya to perform tasks such as assessment and cleanup as Ogoni's, which Jonathan denied and barred the agency from implementing.

We can see that the same people who supported the above plantation but have fallen apart from Amaechi's tyrannical rulership are demonizing him and his projects since Jonathan is their new master. We can thus see that they aren't credible, as such dishonest. Why GDI if not that elections are near; why continue to disrespect and violate the rights of the Ogonis who have suffered untold hardship, scorns, their country-home destroyed and loved ones killed for their rights and environment; why the shenanigans, and are most Ogonis taken for fools?

I therefore call on all Ogonis to reject Jonathan and this deceitful grassroots development device (419) because they don't carry our hope. They're same as other lies told by same and other Nigerian politicians/rulers who cares not for the environment, health and life of Ogonis, but sought their support, votes and oil and gas.

It will be better for Ogonis to stay away and reject this gimmick, watch them rig and succeed than accept it and vote for Jonathan then abandoned as history and contemporary evidence shows. Ogonis have a duty to stand up for their rights and not submit to authorities whose only agenda is to deceive and violate their rights to development and decency; exploit and expose them to insecurity and threats to their existence.

If Wike and Obuah, Maeba, Kobani and others disagree with my position, which is same as majority of Ogonis', they'd proceed with Jonathan's fiat to immediately and massively develop Ogoni alongside the cleanup and remediation, restoration work as recommended by UNEP report. When their efforts are seen before 2015 election Ogoni and the world can take them seriously. As it stands, their lies smell all over them!

Ben Ikari
Ben Ikari, © 2013

The author has 35 publications published on Modern Ghana.Column: BenIkari

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