MEDIA AGENDA SETTING: Imo Guber Election 2023 And The Way Forward

MEDIA AGENDA SETTING: Imo Guber Election 2023 And The Way Forward

By Sochima Ogemdi & Wisdom Onyema.

In the history of Eastern Heartland -Imo State, the aftermath of 2019 gubernatorial election made the State to be among the few States that conducts its election outside the periodic time table of “general elections” as powered by constituted law or constitution of Nigeria owing to the Supreme court judgement and mandate that brought the current governor, Sen. Hope Uzodinma on board about 8-months after the conclusion of the year’s general elections that earlier brought the predecessor, Rt Hon. Emeka Ihedioha.

Now that INEC has mapped out its election time table for the forthcoming election of the State in 2023; who shall we send and who will go for us? This question is very necessary now that some political jobbers are warming up to represent us by governing the State affairs from different political parties. In that regard, politicians cross carpeting to new political parties abandoning their former political parties to Labour Party is on the increase, maybe because of Mazi Peter Obi, the former Anambra State governor or their love for the once abandoned and neglected party (LP). It is quite disturbing that even those that cannot win their village, community or town election(s) if conducted in their localities are today warming up to govern our dear Imo State and different constituencies under LP.

These people forget that Imolites are now wiser and have determined to right the wrongs of years past by voting wisely come 2023 Presidential, National and State Assembly elections as well as selected elections in 2024 respectively especially that of the State gubernatorial election in November 2023.

In our search for good governance for our beloved State, we learned that the likes of Chief TJ Ehirim (Ph.D), Barr. Ike C. Ibeh, Sen. Ifeanyi Araraume, Chief Uche Nwosu, etc, are all warming up to join the race under Labour Party to govern the good citizens of the State just as others in other political parties such as Young Progressive Party (YPP), People’s Democratic Party (PDP), All Progressive Congress (APC), National Rescue Movement (NRM), Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) etc.

It is a resounding fact that the youths make up 75% of every nation’s population across the globe and as such the youths are given fair playing grounds in the scheme of things significantly the right to participate, vote and be voted for in elections especially the later vis-a-vis to takeover their so much drummed future and decide how bright it becomes as they rightly know their problems than even a prophet can see because he who wears the shoes; certainly knows where it hurts seriously.

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While the youths are being cheered and prided as the strong force in Nigeria just like in other nations; the peculiar problem and as well the bane of development in Nigeria is simply anchored on the ugly position of “the old” not giving “the young” (youths) free hands to peacefully and wholeheartedly run for elective posts as well as assume the elective positions without undue, unwarranted and insignificant interruptions, interference and abortion of the processes to bring the youths on board.

It is highly worrisome in view of the above, that the same “old men” who are always behind the popular saying that “Youths are the Leaders of Tomorrow” are the same set of people being the stumbling blocks to the leadership future of the youths who are not aliens but their sons and daughters scattered across boards without meaningful engagements to take over from them when old age calls. This is sadly and evidently seen in the seat-tight syndrome of Nigerian leaders who despite how aged, sick, weak, lagging, and incapacitated they become in the seat of power does not care about the future of the people until death calls to stop them from periodically running for one elective position to another and just like a ladder; the crop of leaders in the country appears very selfish running and moving from one political post to another in hierarchy as well as recycling themselves from top to bottom without even considering the young and younger generations of Nigeria.

In the foregoing, Imo State as a geographical location is blessed with natural resources and had since inception being a blessing to Imolites but the problem, and curses the good people of Imo State have suffered over the years are simply traced to bad leadership and governance of the State after the reign of Dr. Samuel Onunanka Mbakwe whose transformational projects still sings volume in history and comparison of what past and current leaders, governors, candidates, aspirants and stakeholders across the political space of Imo has offered the masses.

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The way and manner some popular

names except a few earlier mentioned, stick around the political space and takes up positions from time to time even aside the saying that electoral mandate is given and not taken throws all concerned citizens off board to tinker if the recycled and recycling names (persons) really meant well for Imo State as they always appear to be political jobbers who do not want to groom the young to take over from them or continue their ambitions. The persons of Senator Ifeanyi Ararume, Barr Ike C. Ibe, Emeka Ihedioha, and many other people who have been around the corridors of power for some time ought make and give way for others especially the youths to come on board and offer youthful leadership powered by innovation, technology, and full notion of what the future holds for the polity. This is because the future truly belongs to them in spite of the “leaders of tomorrow” sayings added with what, how and where the world in technology and innovation is headed to that can be fully understood by the younger generation.

It is a very thunderous slap as well as a “tinker” beating on the faces and body of Imo’s younger and future generations where these old names that have not brought the desired changes in the system of governance in Imo keeps having their way ‘to and fro’ elective political positions or offices in the State. Then where lies the youthful strength of Imo State? Where are the credible aspiring youths and what are they pushed to do in the political parties?

As far as we are concerned, all these men and women are eligible to contest for any elective position of their choice but all that Imolites want is youthful leadership  anchored on good governance, people oriented leadership for the betterment of Imo as our State has not had it good outside the leadership of late Dem Samuel Onunaka Mbakwe of blessed memory.

Now, the three or five, even more bigwig Imo sons are trying to contest under Labour party and it is now on us to do the needful at the polls after party delegates had done their biddings in choosing who becomes their flag bearer.

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Majority of Imo illustrious son’s are willing to shoulder the problem(s) of Imo citizens and change the narrative in the next gubernatorial election and most of them have been contesting every four years but to no avail because of the stumbling blocks.

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The only green horn is TJ Ehirim (Nwanagamkpa) who has stepped in for the race to change the narrative and aside being one of the youngest among other contestants has shown immense passion, zeal in bringing the dividends of democracy if elected.

TJ Ehirim

Meanwhile, TJ Ehirim’s resonance and connection with the youths of the State alongside his international exposure as the best technocrat among these people has put him ahead of others.

However, one may consider in terms of age, the issue of Chief Uche Nwosu (Ugwumba) but Nwosu’s exposure during the last political outing with his activities during Rochas Okorocha’s administration as the governor of Imo State may be a serious setback considering this era of “Obidient” movement and new ways of doing things.

Uche Nwosu

Going further, another good person though a pensioner is Major General Ogunewe(rtd) but his military background contradicts the expectation of most Nigerians particularly, Imo State where militarization, violence, bloodshed, push and drag command system; Imolites may not be ready for another military regime.

Maj. Gen. Ogunewe

Another political juggernaut is Barr. Ike C. Ibeh who may be considered out of the range because of his involvement during Chief Achike Udenwa’s administration and had contested for both the post of governorship and Deputy severally but time will tell as politicking unfolds.

Ike C. Ibe

What the good people of Imo State are saying is that “Let the best of us lead the rest of us” to give them an edge in the era of Mr. Peter Obi’s national rescue.

Most of the time, what the good people are saying in the new Nigeria that is to come during the obident era of Peter Obi, is that TJ Ehirim is the best and most exposed technocrat among others.

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