BY MONDAY UBANI ESQ.
I met Dr Uche Ogah in a Full Gospel Businessmen Fellowship program sometime in 2009. By then, I was already a successful President of the Fellowship being the first President of a chapter to birth two chapters in a day. His testimony at the event was powerful and touching that my heart immediately connected to him. We lost touch thereafter.
I met Ogah again at our Monthly Meeting of Presidents and Directors of Full Gospel Fellowship somewhere in Ilupeju in Lagos and I took his phone number and we maintained a phone relationship. One day I received a call from him after he had watched me on Channels television where I had gone to discuss the rot in the oil sector of our economy.
He clarified certain facts on the sector and promised to give me more accurate information on the ongoings in the sector having seen that I have a desire for transparency in the sector. We became close and when I became the Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association, Ikeja Branch, he was very much instrumental to the success of my tenure as the Branch Chairman of the most vocal and respected branch in Nigeria. My records of service at the branch between the years of 2012 to 2014 are verifiable.
DR UCHE OGAH OON IS FROM ABIA.
I related with Dr Ogah as an Igbo brother until he told me one day that he is from Uturu in Abia State. My interest in him grew in leaps and bounds when I heard of his philanthropic exploits in Igboland generally and in Abia State in particular. He was the greatest supporter in the development of basic infrastructures in Abia State University, Uturu. He gave and still gives scholarship to several students in Abia. He empowered thousands of hopeless and indigent citizens including widows some of whom he built houses for. Uche Ogah became husbands to the widows, father to the fatherless, brother to the hopeless and oppressed citizens and a provider to those that lacked money and food. All these he accomplished at a tender age of less than 45 years!
I have visited his office and home several times and on each occasion I have marveled at his patience, meticulousness in attending to everyone that sought his audience and assistance. No soul has ever come to this golden soul without receiving attention and succor. Dr Ogah does not discriminate, does not segregate and does not deprecate, he sees all, no matter your state, status, religion and tribe. Such a lovely soul!
ABIA, GOD’S OWN STATE.
I have already been worried about the State of Abia and the kind of leadership that have presided over the state of affairs there. My first observation was that the average Abian is not as politically conscious like other States in the region, they are mostly docile politically. Funny enough the State boasts of the greatest men and women living and dead in Nigeria. It may interest you to know that the first military Head of Nigeria, Late General Aguiyi Ironsi was from Abia; Dr Michael Okpara, the greatest and most progressive Premier in Nigeria was from Abia State, the first Igbo Chairman of PDP, Chief Vincent Ogbulafor is from Abia State, not forgetting Rtd Major Gen Ike Nwachukwu, former governor and former External Affairs Minister of Nigeria, Retired Rear Admiral Ndubuisi Kalu, former governor of Lagos and Imo states, Retired Commodore Ebitu Ukiwe who was the Chief of General Staff(Vice President under the military) in the regime of General Ibrahim Babaginda(Retd).
With these great sons and daughters and many more that I have omitted, one would expect Abia to be in the state of Eldorado in terms of quality governance, development of basic infrastructures and lively economy that provides jobs and engagement to the teeming youths who are yearning for employment. Alas, the reverse is the case; the state of Abia remains an unmitigated disaster!
Having come from there, I felt obliged to be concerned and worried about the poor state of Abia back home, but felt helpless and hopeless by the type of leadership and politics prevalent there. The leadership then and now are not receptive to criticisms, corrections and assistance. They indulge in “get and share”(Agbata eke e mentality) which has been on since the creation of the State till date.
One night I could not sleep; throughout that night my thoughts centered on Dr. Ogah as one who has the following characteristics and capacities listed below that can help get Abia out of the doldrums:
(1) The heart of service which he has showed and still showing in the private sector.
(2) The love of the people at heart (very important). Dr Ogah loves all irrespective of status, age, religion, tribe etc.
(3) Tremendous success at the private sector ( arguably the highest private employer of labour from Abia State as at today).
(4) One of the greatest committed lover of Abia State who has established a multi billion Naira industry (conglomerate) in Onuaku, Uturu, Abia state as at today.
(5) He is not one person coming to government of the State as a pauper but as a billionaire with his resources and contact to move the State forward.
(6) He has the financial muscle to translate the ambition into reality; winning election in Nigeria is not a tea party. He will initiate and others will support to change the political narratives in Abia.
(7) He is a true child of God who fears God and His ultimate judgement. Dr Ogah will enthrone fear of God, godliness, honesty, transparency and accountability in governance in the State.
(8) Has a clear vision of what to do in ABA TO BRING IT BACK AS THE economic and commercial HUB OF THE EASTERN REGION OF NIGERIA. Aba has the highest and biggest economic potentials in the entire region, better than Nnewi and Onitsha combined!
(9) He has the magic wand and plan to maximize the agricultural potentials of the State to the fullest by getting the Abians back to farm with modern and improved method of farming and harvesting for exports to other States and Abroad.
I am convinced that he has the capacity to:
(10) Revive and resuscitate all the dead industries and companies in the State.
(11) Engage in massive dualization of roads in towns, building more roads in major towns, cities, villages and most interior rural areas in the State.
(12) Return Umuahia, Aba, Arochukwu, Ukwa, Ngwa, Ohafia, Bende, Uturu and all other major towns in Abia to LIFE and if possible maintain 24-hours economic activities with aggressive lightening of all the cities and towns with security and safety AS priority!
(13) Clear all arrears of salaries and pensions and prompt payment of these obligations monthly and religiously.
(14) Provisions of adequate capital allocation, and development of the educational, health and social amenities like water, sanitary and environmental services to the citizens.
(15) Empowering the youths, employing those that are employable to get social amenities and services back to the people thereby reducing unemployment and criminality in the State.
(16) Funding, equipping and assisting the federally-controlled security agencies to provide security, safety to lives and property in the State (economic activities thrive in a safe environment, Lagos and Enugu States are good examples).
(17) Use his contact and connection with proactive, aggressive and attractive policies to bring in local and foreign Investors into the State and for them to engage in all the sectors of the economy, like farming, industries, housing, environmental and other social services.
(18) Laying down an economic blueprint that will make it very easy for the sons and daughters of the State and other Nigerians to come and invest in Aba and Abia generally with liberal, tax free and rebate policies.
(19) Getting all those in music, entertainment industry and sports to relocate to Abia and turn Abia’s tourist potentials to money making ventures. Abia shall be an entertainment hub in the old eastern region, once again.
(20) PUTTING ABIANS FIRST IN EVERY DECISION MAKING POLICY WITH COMPREHENSIVE AND WELL ARTICULATED POLICIES THAT ADDRESS THE PEOPLES’ WELFARE, JUSTICE DELIVERY, SECURITY, AND MAKING ABIANS TO REJOICE AGAIN IN THE LAND, AS GOD’S OWN PEOPLE!
WHAT I TOLD DR. OGAH.
That night was a night of decision for me. I was convinced that I needed to share this troubling moment with Dr Uche Ogah and I did that by calling and booking appointment with him in his office. When I came, and just like any other day, many were waiting to see him. I waited until it became my turn. I quickly shared my thoughts with him and the response I got was a smile and handshake when I was about to leave, with no definite response to my thoughts. I forgot about it and life moved on.
Sometime in 2013 while holidaying in UK, I got a call from Dr Ogah who asked where I was, I promptly replied that I was in UK on a short holiday with my family. He requested that I should see him whenever I come back to Nigeria. I was very happy, thinking that at last he has decided to give me a brief as I had earlier on applied to be one of his external solicitors to his numerous companies.
When I came back and reported to his house, it was not a brief but a RESPONSE TO MY EARLIER REQUEST, that God has finally given answer to what I came to share with him some months ago; that he is going to contest for the governorship position in Abia State under PDP. He told me that day, that God had earlier on spoken to him about the rescue plan of Abia, but that he needed adequate confirmation from the Almighty God before the “plunge”. The confirmation that he should take the decision to rescue the State came through multiples sources one of which was my sleepless night and the discussion thereafter.
I was happy, no doubt, but the first thing that raced to my brain was to ask him whether he has gotten the clearance and buy-in of the then incumbent governor of the State( you know who I meant?) I asked him and he gave me an assurance that POWER is not given by any person but gotten from God and individual effort. That made a whole lot of sense to me!
We set out to work, put up a team both at Lagos and at Abia State; a DG and workers were appointed at Abia. Office was rented and work for his primaries started in earnest. The candidate, Dr Ogah, a soft spoken young man, humble and intelligent philanthropist was not known in person but his conglomerate MASTERS ENERGY WAS A HOUSEHOLD NAME IN NIGERIA AND ABIA IN PARTICULAR. The task before us then was to give the Abians the face behind MASTERS ENERGY. That task was quickly and masterly accomplished because of the tremendous and unprecedented GOODWILL enjoyed by his company, Masters Energy.
ABIA REJOICE became a Movement in Abia, Uche Ogah became the poster boy ready to take Abia to the next level. The primary election for the gubernatorial position for PDP took place sometime in December 2014 and despite all the shenanigans that took place in the name of election, Dr Uche Ogah OON, Agu Na Echemba Ndi Abia, Onwa Ndi Abia Gburugburu came second with about 103 Votes. They were stunned, “how”? they asked, but the “how” they know. The hand and power of God is with Dr Uche Ogah. Despite the fact that the powers that be had decreed to enthrone a particular candidate by making sure that all the delegates were kept incommunicado in an unknown venue and induced financially to vote against Dr Ogah, the Delegates still collected their money and came out and boldly voted for him.
Having “lost” the election that was clearly marred with irregularities, Dr Ogah’s Campaign Team complained to the Party to correct the irregularities and they were ignored, and so they sought reprieve in the court. THE BATTLE ENDED AT THE SUPREME COURT IN “THEIR FAVOUR”. The rest as we used to say in this part of the world is HISTORY, BUT NOTE THIS, OUR JURISPRUDENCE NO DOUBT WAS MADE RICHER BY THAT LEGITIMATE PURSUIT OF AN AGGRIEVED CITIZEN.
BUT WE HEARD GOD CLEARLY THAT DR UCHE OGAH SHOULD COME TO LIBERATE ABIA.
There is time to win and time to lose, this is recoded in the holy books, more importantly, God said that “He makes all things beautiful in HIS OWN TIME” “HE has also set eternity in the hearts of men, yet they cannot fathom the work which God has done from beginning to the end”. (Ecclesiastic chapter 3 verse 11). The issue is that God has a set-time, sort of time table for every event and thing under the sun.
As PDP in Abia became a personal property of some people and families in Abia, Dr Ogah decided to change venue and structure to actualize God’s desires for his people in Abia State. Please bear this in mind, Dr Ogah’s movement to All Progressive Congress (APC) was after praying and hearing from Heaven directly; it was not done on the spur of the moment or under the heat of passion, NAY! The same God who asked him not to leave PDP even when he knew they will manipulate the system and he had other opportunities to move to, told him now that IT IS TIME TO CHANGE VENUE AND SPACE(He Dr Uche Ogah had dwelt on the mountain of PDP for too long.)
And last year he JOINED APC as a Party. AND SO FAR, SO GOOD!
APC’S GUBERNATORIAL PRIMARY ELECTION IN ABIA STATE.
We were very apprehensive during the Primary Election of APC, on whether the party will do the right thing by allowing a free, fair and credible process knowing the forces of evil that are arrayed against this God-ordained ambition and desire for Abians. BUT Man proposes, and God disposes. The primary election of APC was conducted by the constitutionally recognized Exco of the party ( led by Chief Donatus Nwamkpa) through the Gubernatorial Election Committee sent by the National Working Committee. The Party conducted what will be regarded as the freest and fairest primary election ever conducted by a political party in Nigeria during which Dr Uche Sampson Ogah OON emerged as the preferred choice of the party through direct primaries. As soon as the Chairman of the Election Committee, Hon David Iyorha announced the result, all the other co-contestants about (4) four of them congratulated Dr Ogah, pledging their support and commitment to work for the party to rescue Abia from ruin and penury!
ABIA CAME ALIVE AS DESTINY IS ABOUT TO BE FULFILLED.
From the land of Ngwa, to the hills of Umuahia and to the mountains of Ohiafia, Ukwa, Arochukwu came thunderous shouts of joy and jubilation. Songs were heard in the hinterlands and music and dances were composed and made in the towns and villages in Abia. that the set time is birthed! Once has God spoken, several times have we heard HIM that POWER BELONGS TO GOD AND HE GIVES IT TO WHOMSOEVER HE WILLS IN HIS OWN TIME. THAT APPOINTED TIME IS HERE!
My last article before the primaries IN ABIA is that AFFLICTION SHALL NOT RETURN TO ABIA THE SECOND TIME(Nahum 1:9).
It is important for an average Abian at home and in diaspora to understand and appreciate what is at stake here: it is about divine mandate to rescue Abia from ruins and destruction. The present government has been in power for about four years and is unable to pay salaries and pensions for several months now. It has no legitimacy to request for second tenure, simple. Families and relations of the victims in Abia State have no moral right to renew their sufferings and pains by re-electing failure. It makes no sense!
IF AFTER 3 YEARS AND COUNTING, AN NGWA MAN AS GOVERNOR OF ABIA, HAS NOT BEEN ABLE TO LAY A SOLID FOUNDATION FOR THE RESUSCITATION OF ABA FROM RUINS AND DILAPIDATION, THAT NGWA MAN DOES NOT DESERVE A SECOND CHANCE FOR IT IS SAID IN POLITICS THAT ONE GOOD TERM DESERVES ANOTHER.
I ask where is the good works, good governance, infrastructural developments that we see in States like Ebonyi, Enugu and other neighboring States that are non oil states that will make NDI ABIA to have THE MORAL TURPITUDE TO GRANT THE PDP- LED GOVERNMENT A SECOND TERM? I am afraid, NONE!
ABIANS ARISE AND LET THE DEMONS THAT HAVE HELD ABIA HOSTAGE BE SCATTERED.
LET GOD ARISE, LET ABIANS ARISE too, to rescue Abia from ruins. This is a clarion call for a rescue mission. This is a serious call, that has nothing to do with sentiments, personal interest, zoning-mania, God fatherism , occultism, clannishness and other primordial sentiments that have been dangled over us and kept us where we have been for the past years as a State. We cannot afford to remain blind anymore.
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! IT IS TIME TO JOIN OTHER PROGRESSIVE STATES LIKE ENUGU, EBONYI(created out of Abia), Anambra, Akwa Ibom, Rivers and even Imo State (at least Imo state Is not what it used to be, there have been some level of development that are visible there). Contrast these States with ABIA STATE THAT HAS ITS “DEVELOPMENT” SHOWCASED ON AFRICAN INDEPENDENT TELEVISION(AIT), WITNESSED ONLY BY CHIEF ZEBRUDAYA OKORO IGWE NWAOGBO, ALIAS 4.30 of the popular Masqurade Comedy on NTA. A man that is masqueraded cannot see clearly, and no wonder a dilapidated and ruinous Aba looks like “London” to him. Chai, Chineke ekwela ihe ojoo(“God forbid bad thing”)
LET ABIANS DECIDE THEIR FATE AND BEGIN TO WITNESS DEVELOPMENT BY THEMSELVES ALL OVER ABIA. THE TIME TO CHANGE THE SAD STORY OF ABIA IS NOW AND THE OPPORTUNITY TO DO THAT LIES IN THE HANDS OF EVERY ABIAN. ARISE ABIANS, AND LET US CHANGE OUR SAD STORY, FOR THERE IS NO TIME TO WASTE!.
Good morning Ndi Abia.
Mr Monday O. Ubani