The article with the above headline written by one Eddie Onuzuruike, a renowned T.A. Orji’s Propagandist was actually scripted to denigrate the APGA Governorship candidate in the last election, Dr. Alex Otti, over his one year democracy anniversary press statement assessing the present PDP led government in Abia state. The writer probably used that caption which has almost become an anthem for the present government and their agents to draw readers attention, while focusing on Otti’s alleged criticisms of Chief Theodore Orji.
After using the first two paragraphs to indulge in mudslinging against Otti, he unmasked his true face of sycophancy, as he struggled to re-write the history of the Abia Chattered Politician called T. A. Orji and his inglorious eight year tenure in Abia.
Mr. Onuzuruike, like the previous writers holding brief for T.A. Orji and Okezie Ikpeazu, tried to divert attention from the real issue of governance, while at the same time giving the impression that Otti’s mention of T.A. Orji’s regime was because he didn’t secure the so called PDP’s governorship ticket.
For the records, Otti never contested the governorship primaries of PDP, but quietly left the party for APGA on observing that T.A. Orji, against all democratic practices had narrowed the ticket to a particular candidate and thus was not ready to allow free and fair primaries take place in Abia.
Otti didn’t stir any controversy and never resorted to negative comments against PDP, T.A. Orji or any other person, it was rather T.A. Orji who was making negative comments against Otti and on many occasions openly boasted publicly that Otti would never be the governor of the state.
In the absence of independent candidacy, political parties remain the vehicles through which elective political offices are sought, this was the case with Mr. Peter Obi who was a strong member of the PDP in 2003, but left the party when internal democracy seemed a mirage, and moved to APGA where he emerged governor and later became one of the best performing governors ever in Nigeria, so it’s childish to repeatedly use Otti’s exit from PDP then and the so called won and lost governorship election as a diversionary strategy against the key issues of governance in Abia which Otti is emphasizing on.
While T.A. Orji held sway, he saw the indebtedness of Abia workers as a democratic fun, while his media aides and economic oriented sycophants like Eddie Onuzuruike saw the defense of such disservice as an interesting hobby, that is why Mr. Onuzuruike is yet to show remorse for the legacies of underdevelopment, indebtedness and political sycophancy and thuggery his boss left behind by describing T.A Orji’s era as “Golden years of governance”.
He went ahead to state, “The Abia workers are there to give legitimacy to their rapport with Ochendo. It is equally on record that all Abia workers got historic promotion to the next salary level and Abia paid the highest minimum wage till Ochendo left office. In that era, more permanent secretaries were appointed and special salary schemes were adopted, like the TSS and others. These officers-health workers and teachers are alive and can attest to these’’
The only Abians and Abia residents who would not shake their heads in shock and disbelief after reading the above statement credited to Eddie Onuzuruike are those who took part and are taking part in the oppression of Abia workers or those whose hearts are made of stones.
Like Mark Twain said, “A lie can travel half way around the world while truth is putting on its shoes”, I want to add that the lie that travelled around the world while truth was putting on its shoes must be overtaken by truth before it gets to its destination.
It is painful that the Abia workers who were relegated and owed months of accumulated salary arrears, and whose 18 thousand naira minimum wage were distorted with illegal deductions were the workers Onuzuruike claimed had good rapport with T.A. Orji.
Obviously, Eddie Onuzuruike and T.A. Orji take us for fools and think we lack sense of history, else Onuzuruike wouldn’t have attempted to remind us the sad kidnapping era with positive reference to T.A. Orji.
It remains a verifiable fact that kidnapping started in Abia just over two years into T.A Orji’s first tenure. While this crime swept across the length and breath of the State, leading to loss of lives and collapse of economic activities, T.A. Orji pretended he didn’t know what was happening rather vilified those who raised their voices, and called them unprintable names. On one occasion, he stage managed a mushroom group that declared Abia the most peaceful state during the period under review and at the same time alleged that those calling on Federal government to intervene were detractors who wanted to give FG a bad impression of his government and Abia.
It took the kidnapping of some journalists returning from a retreat in Uyo which attracted national condemnation and awareness, and the subsequent kidnapping of school pupils at a school in Abayi-Osisoma part of Aba which attracted national and International condemnations following the report of the incident on CNN before T.A. Orji and his clueless lieutenants could admit that Abia was under the siege of kidnappers.
When the Joint military task force set up by the then Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Ihejirika, arrived the state and uprooted the kidnappers, T.A. Orji and his men swiftly produced many sycophantic jingles praising him for a feat he never achieved. That is exactly what Eddie Onuzuruike is doing now, rewriting history with a praise on T.A. Orji for wiping the kidnappers he never admitted existed.
To Eddie Onuzuruike and the rest of media hirelings struggling with little or no facts holding brief for T.A. Orji and Co, be informed that Abians are yet to overcome the emotional trauma they passed through under the hellish regime of the Chattered Politician, so telling more lies against them amounts to adding salt to injury.
Before venturing into the Abia political terrain to align with genuine Abia progressives in salvaging Abia, Alex Otti knew it wasn’t going to be a tea party, he knew it wasn’t going to be easy uprooting a formidable structure of anti democratic cabal nearing its two decades of existence, yet he never intended actualizing the Abia political freedom through brigandage and other illegitimate means.
It is very unfortunate that Otti and Abians are dealing with people who hate being confronted with the truth and people who derive joy from deviating from facts to face frivolities.
Under T.A. Orji, a fraudulent recruitment test was conducted in Umuahia for would-be civil servants with over 30,000 applicants paying N1,000 each, till this moment, the results of the test have not been released let alone people being employed.
Under T.A. Orji, the peace and unity of the Igbo nation was carelessly threatened when he unjustifiably sacked over three thousand innocent workers from the Abia civil service under the guise that they were non indigenes. That singular act of callousness rendered many families hopeless, especially couples who worked in the civil service. Just recently, the leadership of the sacked workers union disclosed that over sixty of their members have died since the sack.
The only visible project executed and commissioned by T.A. Orji in Aba in the entire 8 years of his administration was the 3 million naira worth of Iron Made Pedestrian bridge built in front of Abia poly, and the 2 kilometer substandard Obikabia road in Obingwa which collapsed few months after it was commissioned, I challenge Eddie Onuzuruike to bring media men from anywhere so that we can tour Aba and verify those Ochendo legacy projects.
It is on record that T.A. Orji lost his Senatorial election in his ward thanks to his fearless and uncompromising Ibeku people led by Ochiagha B.B. Apugo who proved to him that the vice of incompetence and mediocrity can never be a virtue tolerated on the altar of clannishness in Ibeku land. There are many tragedies of T.A. Orji’s regime that cannot be analyzed here for want of space, but Eddie Onuzuruike and T.A. orji should know that facts are sacred and cannot easily be obliterated with falsehood.
In spite of the senseless dedication of time towards slandering Otti and misrepresenting facts, the truth remains that he has nothing personal against T.A. Orji, and doesn’t have time discussing him because Abians have since confined him into their dustbin of sad political history. But like John Santay said, “Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it”, Abia’s recent political history cannot be discussed without reference to T.A. Orji’s regime. It doesn’t matter his desperate desire to run away from his shadows.
As Eddie Onuzuruike, T.A. Orji, and other Abia PDP agents dedicate their time in fabricating more despicable lies against Otti and Abians, I leave them with the words of the legendary Mahatma Gandhi who said “When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invisible, but in the end , they always fall. Think of it always”
––Ferdinand Ekeoma writes from Aba, Abia State.