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August 19, 2018


Swift Share!



I met Governor Rochas and personal assistants at least six times to find out what had happened to the book! No meaningful explanation of what was going on. Most of my friends who got worried urged me to meet him personally. I summoned courage and met him one day in his global office. “Sir I wonder…..(Rochas) ….Oh! Father, I am sorry…….(called different aids and secretaries, scolded some….and regretted something had not been done? (Fr. Ndiokwere), Sir I didn’t write that book to make money. No!! I don’t want to become a famous writer…..I don’t want any political appointment. I am even too qualified for any of your political offices. But I don’t want any money from you. I just want you to use the book as souvenir especially at the first/second anniversary of your election…..I am not looking for any remuneration. I am not a poor or wretched priest. No Sir, please don’t misunderstand me…. (Rochas) Father I am sorry….I know priests don’t indulge in politics and a Reverend Father writing this makes the book credible…. (Fr. Ndiokwere) Sir, I have about 600 copies of the book in my car here. Can you tell your secretary or someone to follow me and get them collected? Use the books as souvenir  please. Six hundred copies of the book, neatly wrapped in about 30 packets were removed from my car and deposited in the office of the secretary to Imo state government.……



After sometime, impatient they were, 3 of my closest friends (perhaps they felt I had not received millions of naira or political appointment from Rochas and Imo State government), told me why Rochas did not take interest in my book after all. One of them explained that my book was “wonderful” but earned Rochas apathy from the onset. He believed, Rochas did not read (as he promised that first day of our meeting at Ogboko) more than two pages of the book. My friend was convinced that Rochas was upset and displeased with the publication, right from the beginning of the book, right from page 1, THE INTRODUCTION.  The friend insisted he knew Rochas very well, more than so many in Imo state and asked the rhetorical question:   “Didn’t you know Rochas is a very ambitious man, a crook, a con man…..” !!!

I intervened (Please stop! No, no! I don’t want this type of rubbish you are insinuating. I know he is not a saint. But he is better than so many other politicians, I said pleading with my friend to shut up. If he has embezzled government money, tell me. Tell me where he has erred very grievously….I heard people don’t like him because he does not ‘share money’. I don’t care about those allegations.

Whatever the case, no matter how poorly he has treated me and my books, I still love him. I have no bitterness against him. Surely the publication of the two editions of ROCHAS REVOLUTION cost me about one million naira, and I received not one kobo as remuneration, I am not worried. Only God knows why Rochas behaved as he did….History will judge), I tried to convince my friend and as well console myself.

Another friend blamed me for my ignorance and what he called ‘over-presumptive attitude. He argued “You should have consulted him before embarking on your book project. Then he or his political secretaries could have dictated what to write and what you should not mention? Didn’t you know these politicians like praise-singing and sycophancy? You don’t know much about Nigerian politics…..You could have become a millionaire as well as commissioner for ‘something’.

But my argument was that such precautions could have made nonsense of my intentions and efforts. After all more than 90% of the entire write-up was actually ‘praise-singing’ and almost practically nothing negative about the governor.

On another note, one of the observations of the other friend struck me negatively bad. He was almost shouting at the top of his voice: : “You churchmen claim Rochas is a Christian, catholic….He respects the church, bishops, priests and other church ministers….See how he has treated you and rewarded your honest sweat. Will he treat any layperson, a common writer or journalist like this? Oh! My God! I exclaimed as if coming out of my slumber, shells falling off my eyes! I mockingly questioned, with little reflection: “Can the devil speak the truth?” That was Macbeth’s reaction as he saw the witches’ prophecies concerning his kingship coming to fulfillment! Wow!

But since this exchange of views I have continued to wonder what must have happened to the 600 (out of 1500) copies of the book “Rochas Revolution”, published in 2012 in Nebraska, USA and Owerri, Nigeria and deposited in secretary of Imo government office, Owerri.(the rest lying waste somewhere). It has one of the best images of Owelle Rochas Okorocha on the front cover. Have they burnt the books or thrown them into trash bins? That will be an unforgiveable, heartless and reckless blunder.

Dear reader please exercise patience . Why does this amount of deceit, crookedness and insincerity exist on this planet? It was a well calculated deceit. Among those who participated or belonged to the ‘company’ were EMEKA OFFOR (then commissioner of information), EMEKA REGINALD DURU (PA), PASTOR HARIETTA (Protocol officer), RALPH AFOAKU (PA) and others I can’t remember their names. Why did they take interest in lies and deceit, I wondered. A week to the last date they fixed for the launching (already postponed four times) Mr. Afoaku informed me in a phone call that the magnificent hall where the launching was planned to take place in Owerri – no more Abuja – was not yet ready! OMG! I added, why not under the canopy ??? Mute! Hung the phone!



As the scenario was charged with unrelenting sentiments and fanaticism during Biafra/Ojukwu Revolution, so it became during the emerging Rochas revolution in Imo state. Under Rochas leadership most Imo young men and women including my humble self believed Rochas was the Ojukwu of Ndigbo.

Before I deviate I recalled that during Biafra Revolution those days I was one of the tens of thousands of Igbo youths who trusted Ojukwu to date, dead or alive. I defended and fought for Ojukwu. Anyone who ever criticized Ojukwu was in trouble! Most of us were ready to fight and die with Ojukwu. Soldiers mercilessly lashed us with koboko canes as we lined up for recruitment into Biafran army. We were rejected. The solders said we didn’t qualify or we were not needed!

However, come shine, come rain, most of us remained Biafra/Ojukwu vanquard. At the collapse of Biafra Republic, was Ojukwu a coward to have escaped to Ivory Coast ! Never! We wanted him safe anywhere. Perhaps some other time he would re-emerge and continue the cause of Biafra or Ndigbo. Biafra as bone and flesh republic, an independent state in the world community of nations? No! Perhaps in spirit. For me and perhaps many Imolites ROCHAS has become an embodiment of Igbo aspirations, and in the footsteps of Odumegwu Ojukwu the one to wipe out Igbo tears and like the Moses of the old to lead Ndigbo to the Promised Land of new “Biafra!”



Buhari’s Burgeoning Burden

At the dawn of the 21st century, a political prophecy took the airwaves: Nigeria will break up in 2015. An American Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) cast that stone. The two great rivers of Nigeria – the Niger and the Benue – boiled up. Speculations went berserk. The American government quickly distanced itself from that prophecy by saying that it was not the opinion of the American government. What would one expect? When the Obama Administration spurned the request of President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to procure sophisticated weapons to fight the insidious Boko Haram and even went ahead to block the acquisition of such weapons by Jonathan, the American ambassador in Nigeria denied the fact in cute diplomatic phraseology.

However, a critical look at the political situation in Nigeria would not tag any statement about the disintegration of Nigeria a prophet Jeremiah antic. As the years wore on the cracks in the coexistence of the divergent ethnic groups grew wider. Immediately the drums of politics were rolled out, the fissures on the Nigeriascape were assuming the proportions of gulf. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in which President Goodluck Jonathan was at the helm had held sway for some sixteen years. It was so intoxicated with its size and strength that it failed to realise that the germ of disintegration was rapidly incubating and eating deep into its fabric.



Boasting and pride are two sides of the same coin. Both eventually lead to downfall. When Adolf Hitler was ravaging the world during the World War II with his superior weaponry, he was so carried away by the euphoria of his airdominance, in particular, that he boasted that he would take his 1 O’clock tea at Buckingham Palace. He failed to realise that the turning point in his brazen ambition was in the offing. The rotund, bulldog-faced, wizard warmonger, strategist, Winston Churchill, who, too, was an orator and who imbued cigar-smoking with an enviable classic symbolism had to checkmate Hitler. Rather than boast, Churchill fired the fibre of Britons with words to the extent that they had to strain every nerve to withstand the attacks of Hitler. It was evident that by Churchill’s address to his people, offering “tears and blood,… to prefer London to dust and ashes to London in slavery”, Hitler would lose the war. He did.

The British Empire described itself as the Empire where the sun never set. Now, at best, Britain is like a vassal state of America, America that was once its colony.

In the midst of the Nigeria-Biafra war, Ojukwu said that no power in Black Africa would defeat Biafra. That statement strengthened the resolve of the numerous enemies of Biafra to pull her down. Some of them were the minorities in the South-East of Nigeria; Britain, Russia and Egypt. And on the Nigerian side, Gowon saw the break-away of Biafra from Nigeria as a rebellion that would be quelled in a couple of days by police action. But the war lingered for some thirty gruesome months.

The heavily armoured Goliath ridiculed the bare, youthful David with sling and stone at the scene of battle. With just one swing from David, Goliath crashed down.

Boasting and pride court complacency. The tendency is to relax and feel that all is well. And like the fool in the Bible who boasted of his wealth – his ban was stalked with food consequent to a bumper harvest that was not his making. But little did he realise that God would make a demand for his soul that very night (Luke 12:16-21). The boaster negates God. He arrogates to himself powers that he does not have. “Without me you can do nothing” (John 15:5) Christ pointedly said.

In spite of warnings from the Soothsayer and Calphurnia Caesar’s wife, Caesar says: “Caesar shall forth: the things that threaten’d me Neérlook’d but on my back; when they shall see The face of Caesar they are vanished….danger knows full well That Caesar is more dangerous than he.” The conspirators that included his bosom friend, Brutus, cut him down.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) boasted that it would rule Nigeria for sixty years (60). The PDP emerged to save Nigeria’s democracy from General Sani Abacha whose plan was to transmute into a civilian life president consequently toeing the line of Omar Al Bashir of Sudan or Hosni Mubarak of Egypt. But lurking at the background was Governor Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, a very astute and visionary politician who, by his Action Congress (AC) which later became the Action Congress of Nigeria(ACN), was the protagonist or lead facilitator of the All Progressives Congress (APC) that toppled the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), which was a political behemoth, by shrinking its projected 60-year rule to a mere 16!



The 2015 Presidential election that made General Mohammadu Buhari the President-Elect at his fourth attempt at the coveted seat was the most expensive, keenly watched, vigorously contested and sophisticatedly rigged Presidential election in the annals of political elections in Nigeria. The International Community with the American overwhelming influence beamed its searchlight on the election. Election observers from many parts of the world literally besieged Nigeria. Buhari was the choice. He shunned presidential debate in Nigeria and rather flew into London on 26th February 2015 to tell the world that he was a born-again democrat. His campaign promises pleased the West. A successful war on corruption and insecurity would be conducive to a healthy business climate that would grossly benefit the International Community and Nigeria too. Many voters during the Primaries, in particular, were paid in hard currencies for their votes. The PDP rigged and the APC rigged. But by Jega’s new electoral machinery, the APC was conveniently put ahead of the PDP. In Kano and Katsina states, there were incontrovertible pieces of evidence of underage voting, ballot-stuffing and a generalised disregard for the card readers. Kano recorded 1.9million votes without determinable void votes in a state with an alarming high illiteracy level. Thanks to Jega’s genius.


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