A LETTER TO PRINCE MUSTAPHA AUDU

1

As you are aware, the problem of Kogi State is that of leadership.We thank God for the fact that you grew up with a father, who recognised that great states are built by men and women of resolve and vision. Our state more than ever before needs a leader that can bring our people together in pursuit of a common cause. That leader is you.

We also know that you will be the type of leader, when holding a public or private position with other defined responsibilities, has the ability to carry out those tasks and to respond to other unforseen problems when they arise. We know clearly that you have the capacity to articulate the Kogi vision of where you want the state to go, develop a realistic strategy to get there, and attract talented people, committed people with a wide variety of knowledge, perspective and skills on how to get it done. That leader is you.

We also know you know and acknowledge that in the modern world, lasting positive results are more likely to occur when leaders practice inclusions and co-operation rather than authoritarian unilaterianism and that even all those who lead the way dont know all the answers – that is why we need you.

We also know you have the steadfastness in pursuit of goals, and the flexibility in determining how best to achieve them.The courage to make a hard decision and the confidence to stay with and explain it.You have also the common sense to listen to others and involve them.And the strength to admit when mistakes are made or when a given policy is not working.We need you.

We also know that we need a leader that trust others, lessons we know you learnt from your late father.We also know that when it is the objective to get things done that are important and controversial, we know you have the compromising ability when it is neccessary and when not to cross the lines. Kogi needs you now as you are that messiahnic leader the state longs for.

We know under the tutelage of your father, you were taught to respect the human dignity of every one you meet, to observe them closely and listen to them carefully. From your father you also learnt that everyone has a story but not everyone can tell it.You also learnt that most of society’s greatest wounds are self- inflicted, that trying and failing is better than not trying at all. That every person makes mistakes but most people are generally good.We trust that under you our people will be in safe hands.

We have also known that you basically see politics as a way of making other peoples life stories better.You have also learnt hard leadership lessons from the experiences of those who befriended you and your father for the good of our state.You were also taught you cannot be a great leader if you are driven by hate and resentments, no matter how justified those feelings seem.To be free to lead, your father told you,you just have to let a lot of things go.You were also importantly told to look for the dreams and hurts, hopes and fears in the eyes and hearts of everyone you meet.Our people know and trust your father: that is exactly what you will do for them.Lessons that made his leadership enduring. Please, come out.

Jamila Musawa, Lokoja