By Gideon EKERE
In our normal way of life. When a person proves stubborn. Causes disaffection amongst others. There’s always series of warnings. If he persist. And then disobeys these warnings. Giving them deaf ears. As a mark of seriousness. He will be called several times. And then he’s been asked. ‘How many times have I called you?’ He will then answer, ‘three times.’
There’s man called John James Udoedehe. A strong politician. A commander of common men. Especially, those from Ikot Okubo Offot in Uyo. He’s an Uyo man as well. A former Council chairman. A former Senator. A former Minister of FCT. A former member of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. A former die-hard supporter of Godswill Obot Akpabio. And a former student of the University of Uyo.
As a chairman of council, he caused a fight. As a senator, he fought the then governor, Obong Victor Attah. As a Minister of FCT, he fought his superior. As a PDP member, he insulted other members. As a supporter of Godswill Akpabio, he fought the former governor. Which was why he was removed as minister. And as a student of UNIUYO, he was always fighting with lecturers. Meaning that Udoedehe has a different gift. Call it blood or gens. You may not be wrong. Because he has the spirit of Armageddon. But upon all these fights. He’s yet to win any. That’s why I’m calling him three times.
In 2011, he came out. Wanted to be governor of Akwa Ibom State. Many people followed him. We saw the intimidating crowd that identified with him. They all thought he could win such war. Because of how he roared. Not knowing that Udoedehe is beehives of strength for such movement. Many people offered help. Just like the Ponzi money scheme. Their money never yielded any increase. At the end. They all wept without consolation.
In 2015, Udoedehe came out again. By this time. The crowd had reduced. Because his worth had been revealed. But then, he was defeated at the party level. He cried foul. Caused a fight as usual. But couldn’t still win at the end. Umana Okon Umana carried the party’s flag. That’s how Udoedehe became a loser again.
In recent times. There’s isn’t peace in the All Progressives Congress, APC fold. I mean the one in Akwa Ibom State. This is as a result of effect of one man’s squad. The usual personality known for political crisis. Senator John James Udoedehe. He wants to contest for governorship again in 2019. The man who has never ceased to create scenarios. And that’s why I have decided to call him three times.
Last week, something happened. Udoedehe entered Uyo. It wasn’t the first. He has always done that. After going to relax, gathers more strength in Abuja. Not that he went for any reasonable purpose. But just to change environment. Then returns to deceive many. It was more of a political campaign. Because many jobless youths joined the meaningless trend. Moved around the capital city. Just to deceive themselves. Because most people have come to their senses. That’s after the 2011 failure. That’s why his supporters have reduced in strength and numbers.
The former Minister of FCT has since factionalized the party in the state. He has carved out his own executives. The very ones who thinks and act just like him. All in his selfish desire to become a governor. Now that the South-South caucus of APC have signed his removal from the party. Maybe he will also carve out another state. Where he will also govern. Take decision by himself. Because Akwa Ibom is too big for an uneasy leader. A man who talks carelessly, bounce on anyone. Acts beyond borders of decency. Create disunity at ease. And then feels the road to leadership is through arrogance. Oh! Udo mfana!
Series of meetings have been held. Different opinions sort. On how to reunite Udoedehe back to the party. But he claims he formed APC. He should be regarded as the landlord. All things must be done in his wisdom. That’s the fallacy of the whole game. Forgetting that APC is a family where every member belongs to. It belongs to nobody. And it’s very simple to avoid. Knowing too well that arguing with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason. And whose philosophy consists in holding humanity in contempt. Is like administering medicine to the dead. Or endeavouring to convert an atheist by scripture. That’s why I’m calling him three times.
Yes, Nsima Ekere, Umana Okon Umana and the rest left PDP for APC. Just like Udoedehe did in 2010. Because the truth must be told. The only full flesh APC member is Mr. James Iniama. The man who contested governorship election in 2007 with Godswill Akpabio. And has never tested the onions of PDP. Udoedehe went in. Grabbed the party from him. And now claiming he brought ACN to Akwa Ibom. How come? Maybe , the thinks that others are daft. They can’t remember history. But before the unseen happens, how many times have I called you, Udoedehe?
The former Senator must know. Just like others have realized. That an eye for an eye will only make the whole world blind. He has been fighting to be who he wants all through his life. But what’s the point of being who he is, if he cannot have the people who worth all the fighting? A time comes. That one must realize that he must not fight to get what he wants. A time has come for a total reconciliation. It shouldn’t be fighting all the time. He should know. That leadership comes when the time is ripe. Not through force and fighting.
For now, I appeal for cessation of hostilities. Not because we’re too exhausted to fight. But because war is bad in essence. Knowing too well that our young ones are always the victims. While politicians children are enjoying abroad. Our youths will never be killed anymore because of indifferent adoption. Udoedehe and others must come together. It must not be done in one man’s own way all the time. Let’s give peace a chance. Because the strength is for others. Not for brothers.
Lets us go with the saying. That ‘when two brothers are busy fighting, an evil man can easily attack and rob their poor mother.’ Let the spirit of unity be in us. Standing shoulder to shoulder so evil can never cheat and divide us. Whether Udo, Akpan or Etokudo….let us know. That whenever we’re confronted with an opponent. We could conquer with love.
My anger is with those joining hands with Udoedehe to breed disunity. They lift up men who only show them darkness. And put down those brave enough to show them the light. Likewise, people engage in darkness when it is light outside, and acknowledge the light only when it is dark. We abandon those fighting for us to cheer behind those fighting against us. And, we only remember good people and God when it is convenient for us, and take them for granted because their doors are always open. Only to chase after closed doors and personalities void of substance and truth.
Let us know that we’re not sheep or cows. God didn’t create fences for us or boundaries to contain our existence. Man did. God didn’t draw up political barriers to separate us from each other. Man did. And on top of that, no father would like to see his children fighting or killing each other just because they want to lead. The Creator favours the man who spreads loves over the man who spreads hate. A political title does not make anyone more superior over another. If a kind man stands by his conscience and exhibits truth in his words and actions, he will stand by God regardless of his faith. If mankind wants to evolve, we must learn from our past mistakes. If not, our enemy will evolve without us.