Southeast governors are to be blamed for infrastructure deficiant in the southeast Region?
The so called political elites of the igbo speaking states should take some blames on the state of infrastructures in the region. The south east since the end of the carismatic and ambitious governor of Imo state,Sam Onunaka Mbakwe have not had any governor in the region like him.
It will only do justice to the above said, if we take a look back in time, when the south east region was oncourse interms of infrastructure development. what happened,why the hindrances and limitation today incomparism to back then,
Today,the development of the region both the federal infrastures and states infrastructure development has seen a tremendiouse dickline. Lets use Imo state to highlight the point that we are driving at
Samuel “Sam” Onunaka Mbakwe was an Igbo politician and governor of Imo State, southern Nigeria from 1 October 1979 until 31 December 1983
Mbakwe joined the Constituent Assembly in 1978 and a year later, pricisly October 1 of the year 1979 he became the governor of Imo State,barely three years after its creation by the military in 1976. The first priority of his administration was to improve the condition of the road infrastructures in the state,which he did very well.
His second term re-election was based on the good work of his administration, which was however, interrupted by General Muhammadu Buhari’s military coup in December 31, 1983, which ended the Second Republic.
He was said to be a controvertial governor by his pires, due to his stans against injustices that was directed to his people (igbo’s) by the government in the centre.
A man that loved his people and had good plans of infrastructure development in Imo state. Sam Mbakwe was jailed by Buhari’s junta for standing against the overthrow of Shagari and the abolition of the constitution/rule of law. Buhari proceeded after his arrest by arresting his wife also.
Mbakwe later responded to his critics,who had described him as controvertial person, in september of 1995 for which he said the following,” “If you have been in prison before, that will be your baptism and qualification. You will learn from the prison that not all those in detention are criminals.”
Mbakwe earned the nickname “the weeping governor” for crying while trying to convince the federal government to pay more attention to his state; the first occasion of his famed tears was the Ndiegoro flood in Aba, which was then a part of Imo State.
He invited the then President Alhaji Shehu Shagari to see first hand the destruction done by the floods, and it was said that he was moved to tears as he and the president went round witnessing the disaster that was done by the flood.
In 1979, Imo state was only about 3 years as a state,with the state virtually lacking infrastructures, Mbakwe settled down quickly to the task of governance, mobilising the people and their resources to facilitate its development. In Owerri, the state capital, Mbakwe completed the asphalttarring of all the roads started by the military administration in a very short period.
He extended the same measure to other roads in Aba and Umuahia, two towns noted for commercial activities in the state.
Mbakwe was among Second Republic governors that built state universities. As a humble politician, he was also not found wanting in the industrialisation of the state. Mbakwe’s administration adopted a zonal arrangement to ensure an even spread of industries in the young state.
The Aluminum Smelter Plant in Inyishi and paint factory, Abor-Mbaise, Avutu Poultry Farm and others were all the products of this policy. The Amaraku Power plant, which the succeeding military regime later sold was also built by Mbakwe’s administration.
Mbakwe started championing the cause of his people after the civil war. As a lawyer, he handled several suits on the famous “Abandoned Property” saga in Port Harcourt, Rivers State and other places.
The politician became known as the weeping governor when in Lagos, then seat of the Federal Government, he took the plight of his people to the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meetings. At several meetings, Mbakwe, unable to hold back his emotions, wept over the dwindling fortunes of the Igbo.
The more he wept and was consoled, the more the people loved him.
Today we have the likes of okorocha,that got to power on the platform of APGA the only political party that should unite the entire south east politicians with which the igbos could have been able to fight their battle in Nigeria as one people,considering the founder of the party. But due to persnol ambition he abandoned the party that gave him the oportunity to APC,a southwest party. Okorocha may still be the worst governor in the history of Imo state.
why is it difficult for these individuals to come together form a party so that the whole south east can be governed by one party with one objective of fighting for the interest of the igbo’s. why are they not talking about how to bring in forign investments to the southeast. why can theY not see that the dregged river niger proposed seaport at onitsha becomes functional. why are they not fighting in unison, so that there is more trific directed to enugu international airport so that people can fly direct to and from Enugu to any international destinations instead of Lagos.
It is disapointing and shamful that Igbo’s do not have a states man in the entire eastern states, rather they have been blessed with a bounch of hungry and dubiouse individuals seeking for their selfish interests occupying the seats of power. The east is crying for leadership,men and women of Mbakwes caracter that can stand selflessly to fight for the interest of the igbo’s in jungle of the Nigeria project.
On the next edition,we would take an indept, what Rochas is really doing as the governor of imo state. subsiquently we will also look at the other four states of the south east and their governor, to bring to light what is really holding back infrastructure development in the south east…