DEMOCRACY AND ITS ATTENDANT ADVANTAGES ARE BEING SUBMERGED, THREATENED AND UNDER SIEGE IN IMO
– THE PRESIDENT, HIS EXCELLENCY, MUHAMMADU BUHARI & THE INSPECTOR GENERAL OF POLICE, SHOULD PLEASE, MONITOR CLOSELY WHAT IS HAPPENING IN IMO, UNDER GOVERNOR HOPE UZODINMA
– THE WHOLE SCENARIO IS GETTING OUT OF HAND
Democracy and its attendant ingredients or advantages, to say the least, are being submerged, threatened and under siege in Imo, under Governor Hope Uzodinma.
And we humbly call on President Muhammadu Buhari, the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Abubakar Adamu to closely monitor what is happening in Imo, under governor Hope Uzodinma, with the Commissioner of Police in the State, not giving anybody the confidence to call upon him when certain situations arise.
Today, being Wednesday, March 31, 2021, two Summits were slated to hold in Owerri, the Imo State Capital. One was being organized by a Pro-government group. And the other one was christened “Imo Good Governance Summit” being organized by “Imo Transparency Group International”.
While the Pro-government Summit was allowed to go on, a team of Police men arrived at the Immaculate hotel, Venue of the other Summit and ordered the participants to leave the place immediately. The management of the hotel was also ordered to lock the hall for the Summit on the ground of orders from above.
Not only the Police men that stopped the Summit, thugs were also coming in buses to monitor whether the Summit was going on or not. And we are talking about ordinary Summit in an open place.
This is not the Imo State we all used to know. Imo is one of the most active Political States in the Country, with voices both in support or against any government that had governed the State being high, without eyebrows being raised.
But today, those beautiful democratic ethos Imo was known for, have all gone under. The government is using intimidation, harassment and all unconventional means in conflict with democratic cultures, to run the State.
Unfortunately, the Commissioner of Police in the State, we should have run to, when such unfriendly or conflicting democratic actions or situations arise, have, through his actions and inactions or body languages, told us that there is no light at the end of the tunnel. And leaving everybody at the whims and caprices of the governor and the government he leads.
The Commissioner of Police in Imo should please tell the world why he stopped a Civil Summit meant to strengthen our democracy. It was not a political rally per se.
Imo Governor, Chief Uzodinma should borrow a leaf from President Buhari, who, inspite of all the criticisms against him by the opposition in the Country, he has never taken up “arms” against them or trying to suppress them.
Okorocha for instance, was governor for eight years in Imo and the opposition in the State was the most vocal and active, compared with what happened in other States. Yet, he allowed them to operate without any hitch or trying to suppress them. There was no ugly name the opposition in the State didn’t give Okorocha, yet, he rather ma3de fun of such names and opposition. Democracy in Imo was at its best under Okorocha.
But today, fear and fear of the unknown has enveloped the State. The meaning of Democracy has been changed in Imo. Certain actions that threaten democracy have become the orders of the day.
We call on well-meaning Nigerians to help in letting governor Uzodinma know that, he is Imo governor in a democracy or under democracy. He should not use intimidation and harassment in governing Imo people.
FESTUS AHUMARAEZEAMA, Ph.D
CHIEF CONVENER OF IMO GOOD GOVERNANCE SUMMIT