Awka Times Interview with High Chief (Senator) Ben Ndi Obi
Intro by Chudi Okoye
He combines some of the finer diplomatic skills of Talleyrand and Metternich. He has been a fixture in the rarefied circles of high politics in Nigeria for over 40 years, starting out as a precocious political wunderkind aged just 23. He met most of the foundational figures of Nigerian history – Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Aminu Kano, Emeka Ojukwu, you name it – under whose tutelage he honed his political skills. And he has been there, right in the thick of it, among the second generation of national leaders laboring to recover the legacy of the founding fathers. He has been in the thickets of national politics, and has crossed the wickets in a wide range of roles – as party leader, political adviser, legislator and, not least, the urbane, well-spoken orator who sprinkles intellectual finesse upon the often tawdry exhibitions that pass for political practice in Nigeria.
High Chief (Senator) Ben Ndi Obi (Ojeligbo) is considered one of Awka town’s finest. He is acknowledged by some as the foremost figure of Awka political leadership. Quaintly bewhiskered, heavily bespectacled, and often spotting a deeply introspective look, Chief Obi can seem sometimes a forbidding presence. Until, that is, he enthralls you with his refined elocution and urbane civility redolent of a Renaissance Man. There is a subdued but confident knowingness about him which projects the impression that he can wade into any crisis and impose order.
Little wonder then the unyielding expectation that whatever the intricacies of Awka political crises, “Ojeligbo Awka” needs only to make time from his national excursions to bring peace to his homeland. The expectation is poly-partisan. Nearly all sides in the multilateral confrontations in Awka politics agree on the promise of his intervention. I heard the articulation of this hope among a loyalist group (Concerned Awka Patriots), gathered last year as a platform to launch Ojeligbo’s invasion of Awka crises (nothing came of it). I heard it again, this fervent hope, when I met with the leading light of the Awka insurgency in Florida this past summer to probe the prospects for peace. A simple bilateral conclave between Chief Obi and the monarchic insurgent, I was told, would, with a swish fulfill everyone’s wish and bring closure to the conflicts. Whether this hope was wishful thinking or political analysis, I simply could not tell. But the hope has remained, tethered like a rope around the burgeoning spectacle of Awka political crises.
And yet there is a small pocket of cynics not in the docket of hopeful expectation. These irreverent types agree that Chief Obi once had the magic wand to cure the contusions of Awka politics. But they argue – ruefully or mischievously one cannot say – that the chief impairs his ability to intervene as an impartial arbiter by so overtly aligning with one side of the political argument.
So: can Ndi Obi save Awka as some insist, or can he not assist? It is indeed a puzzle worthy of journalistic hustle. And so, I deployed the canny editor of Awka Times, Emeka Ral, to seek out the senator and figure it out. Emeka had arranged an interview with the chief in his local Awka office, but he missed the allotted time by a whisker. The busy senator had moved on to other occupations by the time our editor fought his way through the zigzags of Awka traffic. And so, Emeka went in pursuit of the senator all the way to Abuja. There again, the editor had to wait for a week – enjoying the sights and the bites whilst avoiding the blights of that city – before he finally knuckled down with the high chief, accompanied by our Abuja correspondent.
But the chase was well worth it. Our interview with High Chief Ndi Obi finally laid bare what he really thinks about the Awka crises. Under skillful questioning by our willful editor, we finally unraveled the thinking behind the actions – or, some say, inaction – of the senator. The interview reveals his exasperation and disgust with the grubby mercantilism of Awka local politics. You could hear the frustration in his voice, usually modulated but on this occasion of our interview rising a note or two as he pounded his office desk marveling at the pointlessness of what goes on in his hometown.
In this encounter with High Chief Ndi Obi, he told us that he has decided to sit back and watch the dramatis personae of Awka politics as they strut their stuff (a kind of “siddon dey look” disposition popularized by one Ota chicken farmer who ruled Nigeria twice). Read on and you’ll see what I mean. Or listen to the audio recording posted on our website.
ATM is seeking a follow-up interview with the high-profile chief. If, as Talleyrand (and later Henry Adams) said, “politics is the systematic cultivation of hatreds”, then who better to mediate the manifold rivalries in Awka than her son who has apparently mastered the esoteric arts of Nigerian politics. Can a gent who spent a lifetime in the national political trench now head for the bench at a time of political wrench in his hometown? One would think not! We believe that Chief Ndi Obi owes his hometown yet another assignment as a statesman before he settles finally into a well-deserved retirement.
ATM (Emeka Ral): Good morning, Sir. Please, may we meet you.
Sen. Ndi Obi: My name in Ben Ndii Obi (CON), from Umuogbu village, Awka.
ATM: Thank you, Sir. Quickly to the issues, Awka town has been deeply engulfed in leadership crisis for some years now, one of which is the contest over the ADUN leadership. Recently, there was an Appeal Court judgment on the matter. Sir, may we share your opinions on this and in view of the recent judgment, could you also share your opinions on the way forward for the Union.
Sen. Obi: First of all, I want to be on record, saying emphatically that the problem of the Awka people is based primarily on the fact that a good number of those who are considered as leaders or opinion moulders have no respect for this simple five letter word called truth. That’s the problem. You see, I have spent the better part of my life from about age 23 as a young lad pursuing the upliftment of the Awka man. Since I am being recorded, I want to place it on record that in our Awka of today, both dead and living, no Awka man has placed Awka people in positions of authority as I have done. And I have never asked to know where any of them comes from. Most of them are still alive today. Some of them while sitting in the comfort of their homes would receive calls from me saying go there and take that appointment. And I am not talking about menial jobs, but critical appointments that serious minded people would have capitalized on in helping to build Awka. I stand to be challenged on that. I don’t want to mention names.
In 2003, when I went on campaign for my senatorial seat, there was none amongst the 33 villages of Awka where I went to without people coming out to say “Sir, do not say anything. Let me speak on your behalf. They would mount the rostrum confessing that they got their jobs through me. Most of them I never remembered, because as a young lad, I got involved with elderly persons in good positions in this country. When I got to national limelight in the political terrain, I was the youngest in the whole country. Fortunately for me, I met the founding fathers of this country – Zik of Africa, the sage Awo, Shehu Shagari, Aminu Kano, Ibrahim Waziri, Tunji Braithwaite. I met them on first term basis. Zik would call me Benji. He was fund of that name because that was his own name. Today, I hold one of the most anticipated and most crucial lecture series in Africa in honour of Zik of Africa. On November 16 every year, former presidents of Africa are invited to participate in the lecture. This year it will feature the immediate past president of Sierra Leone, Dr. Earnest Bai Koroma. So, I started life as a young man knowing people. Forty-one years of my life now I have been in politics. I have met all the presidents of Nigeria and I know each of them at very close quarters. I can look at each of them in the face and say hey, you’re wrong mr. president. Why then would I not be able to tell my Awka brethren what is wrong and what is right?
You see, the truth is that Awka and its people enjoy trivialities. It gives them joy to live on simple things. It gives them joy. Today, where is the Awka man in the civil service of both the state and the federation? Where is the Awka man in the military? In the police. Where are they in the paramilitary services? I said to myself, let me sit back and watch what they do to themselves. It is a pity, and if you roll the tape back, some people decide that they must be the ones to install the traditional ruler of the town; they must be the ones to install the president-general of the town union – those who would kowtow before them. That’s not my interest. What really would an Eze-Uzu do for me for which I would be unable to say gentleman, this is the truth? I don’t need any Eze-Uzu; any Eze-Uzu in Awka needs me. I don’t need any President-General; any President_general in Awka needs me instead. I don’t need any governor of Anambra state; any governor of Anambra state needs me. I am saying this with all sense of responsibility and it has been the case since the state was created. Till today. (bangs desk). Till today. It is the case with all the governors that have served in that state from the military to the current governor (Akpokuedike Obiano). If I can walk up to President Buhari and say Mr. President, what you are doing is wrong (and these are the reasons), and he calls his men and says ‘look, I know Senator very well. He is one of the few politicians I respect and when he speaks, I listen’. And after that, his me would troop here asking to know what I told the President. If the President wants to divulge my discussion with him to his Chief of Staff or the Secretary to Government of the Federation, it is for him to do so. It is not for me to publicise what I told him as I see things in the country. So when I come here and I hear of problems with the ADUN and the traditional institution, for God’s sake, what problem! Because people want to install their puppets and stooges, they run the town aground. The same people who now claim to have installed Eze-Uzu II were the one who installed Eze-Uzu III in very funny and fraudulent manner. I told them then that they had done the wrong thing. If you say traditional ruler is selected in sections, it therefore means that when it moves to a particular section, the most senior community of that section would present a candidate. This same group of persons (without any minus, save for those who are dead) went and maneuvered the process. And I told them that you’ll all pay for this. It is always very good to have witnesses in whatever you do. All that I have said here span through 35-40 years, but I have witnesses. Even the greatest of all the greats (Jesus Christ), when he was been led to the cross for crucifixion, and Peter said he would accompany him, he told him he would deny him three times before the cock crows and he eventually did deny him three times.
Ozo Austin Ndigwe, Eze-Uzu II – the present traditional ruler of Awka (as far as I’m concerned he is the traditional ruler and there is no dispute about that), and Igwe Chris Onyekwuluje – Igwe Umunya – the three of them left Enugu at one in the morning in the year 2000. They left Enugu with Igwe Chris Onyekwuluje driving his concord Mercedes to catch me in the office. Then I was the Special Adviser to the National Security Adviser of the country. My boss then was travelling round the world trying to repair the damaged image of Nigeria; hence I was running the office because he trusted me. Then, at 6:15am I was already seated in my office, and at 7am, I would relocate to the Villa only to return to my office at 8 or 9pm. I would do another one hour of work again and then move to the hotel where I stayed. So, they knew that they must get me at 6:30am. Unfortunately because they left that early, HRH Igwe Onyekwuluje who was driving the car slept off and the car veered into the bush. They were lucky it was just vegetation and so they were not hurt. They continued and were able to arrive my office at 6:30. When they came in they knelt down begging and I said no. This is an abomination. If you must speak to me, please sit down. They said they had come to plead with me to allow the Eze-Uzu ofala hold, having heard that I was intent on foiling the exercise. Alarmed, I told them I was not interested in the exercise because the right thing was not done. However, a people get the government they deserve. You want the Eze-Uzu, have him, But when you come back to me, I will tell you that you must live with him. Now, it is “crucify him, crucify him”. Crucify him for what? I am a systems man. Government has spoken and said that they know Eze-Uzu Gibson Nwosu as the recognized traditional ruler of Awka, ditto for Engr. Tony Okechukwu. And then you go somewhere in the dark of the night and install one man as the PG and then you want me at my level and standing to be part of such charade? I can’t be part of such nonsense. And I told them that. You go and install another man and say he is the traditional ruler even while the traditional ruler is still alive! In as much as I know the depth of brotherhood that exists between Ozo Austin Ndigwe and myself, it won’t blindfold my eyes from speaking the truth and he knows it. When it comes to truth and justice, I don’t look at relationships. It is a one-way traffic.
ATM: Sir, looking at the issues, there is this feeling in some quarters that notables in Awka like yourself could actually do more, but they seem not to be doing so, not using the big stick, the influence they wield… If you had been more forthcoming, perhaps the Awka crisis would have been resolved. In fact, we recall that some time last year, you convened a conference in Awka, wherein some resolutions were reached to the effect that the crisis would be resolve in no time. Over one year down the line, there seems to be no end in sight. Is the matter more complicated than it was perceived to be?
Sen. Obi: No. You see, when there is hunger in the land, people go for all sorts of crumbs that fall from the table. This is the situation we find ourselves in in Awka. Like I said, nobody wants to tell himself the truth. We all know what the problems are, but we shy away from it because it benefits some of us. The recent problem derived its origin really from dust-to-dust. It is the genesis of all the current problems. Again I go back to the issue of people not being able to speak the truth. I am not a Catholic. That issue does not exist in the Anglican Church where I belong. But I set up in my house some six or seven years ago, a twenty-three-man committee made up of all prominent Awka sons. Ozo Obuorah Essel was a member, Ozo German Nwofor was a member, Late Nwigwe Agummadu was a member, the President-General was a member, Gen. Obiakor was a member, Celestine Okoye was a member, Ichelle the former Speaker was a member. When we started, I told them that if we do not tackle and put and end to this dust-to-dust issue, it would give us problems later. Therefore, let us approach it with give and take. The Ozo men who had approached Bishop Ezeokafor complained that he was a very difficult and unyielding man. I said ok, let me see how Bishop Ezeokafor would say no in the presence of all of us when I stand and say to him My Lord Bishop, this is what the Awka people want. To the surprise of everyone, he gave us an appointment and we went. By the time we finished with the usual kola, he asked to know what had brought this caliber of people. We spoke, including Ozo German Nwofor, Ozo Obuorah Essel, Nwigwe Agummadu and others. He then asked ‘Ojeligbo, how much time do you need’? Everybody was surprised. This was the same bishop who was said to be impossible. We agreed for six months. Since the matter was boiling most in Umudioka, we pleaded with Celestin Okoye and Gen. Obiakor to go and hold a meeting in Umudioka and tell them that we have started. The meeting was hosted by Celestine Okoye, CP. We went to every community to plead with them. Before we knew it, they started singing different songs. Yet we went to various community squares saying the same thing. For me, it was my little time and resources which I do not have that I put out, making sure that we all come to the table and be happy. By the time they changed the narrative to suit their personal agenda, and then of course went to Izu-Ozo where they can always sit and call day night, and night, day; where you now have a group of people whose reputation and integrity are suspect. Some of us grew up know what Ozo titled men were like in Awka and we interacted with them.
I am not an ambitious politician and unfortunately for me, I cannot go now and say I want to run for the governorship of Anambra state. It is late in the day. If I were younger, and maintained this my little respect across the spectrum (maybe minus Awka but across the spectrum in Anambra state) if I said I was running for governorship in Anambra state I do not think there would be one community in Anambra state that would not give me a clean bill of health. One quarrel which my late best friend, Dim Chuwkuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu had with me until he died was that I refused to become the governor of Anambra state. And I said to him, listen to me Sir, before we became friends (and you have seen it in several fora you and I have attended), I had made an impact at the centre not Just as an Awka man, but as an Igbo man. And if I pull from that, you can’t have a replacement immediately. I am not boasting here. You can’t have a replacement. He came to realize it though, but he still felt that whatever the problems of this state are, I have the answer to them.
I never met Peter Obi before in my life. When in 1999 I was Special Adviser at the NSA’s office, I was the one the NSA gave the mandate to compose the nominations for parastatals across the country. Dr. Haruna Adamu and Prof. ABC Nwosu came to me and said Chief, do us a favour. There is one young man called Peter Obi, we want you to make him chairman of NPA. And I wondered Peter Obi, I don’t know him. More so with his surname as Obi, people would say he is my relation and I don’t know him. They said he is young man from Agulu and in most of the blue-chip companies as chairman. Well, I put his name as chairman NPA with a question mark. Unfortunately, the Vice President whom I wasn’t close to at that time, Atiku Abubarka sent for me and directed that I bring the entire file. I called the NSA and told him what had happened and he gave his nod.
So, in 2001, I was at home in Awka and they came to tell me that there was one Peter Obi outside waiting to see me. I was shocked. Peter Obi to see me! In any case, I had a policy of not stopping people from coming to see me. I asked them to let him come. I was the foundation National secretary of the All peoples Party (APP) as at 1998. The two major parties then were the PDP and the APP. In fact, in the local government elections we defeated the PDP all over the country. I was the foundation National Secretary and I gave that party the name on 27th of August, 1998. I brought in Emeka Ojukwu, I brought in Saraki, I brought in Nzeribe, Tom Ikimi. So he said Sir, I am Peter Obi. I am just coming from Enugu. I went to see Dim Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu to plead with him that I want to run for governorship, and he said to me that his best friend Chief Ben Obi (Ojeligbo) is an Awka man and that as we speak now he is in Awka. He was with me in Enugu yesterday, but right now he is in Awka. Go and see him. My interest is for him to run and I’ve been begging him since 1988 to run for governorship but he refused. Go to him. If he says he is not running, tell him you want to run and tell him that I want the three of us to meet and take a position.
ATM: But, Sir, there’s this story alleging that the late Dim never wanted an Awka man to become the governor of the state, since Awka already had the seat of capital.
Sen. Obi: That’s not true. Anybody who is saying that is faking and knows nothing. Tell the person that I said he knows nothing. Peter Obi is alive. Am I not recorded?
ATM: Yes, you are.
Sen. Obi: So what are you talking about? Tell him I said he knows nothing. He told him that since 1988 he had been begging me which is the fact. Am I not an Awka man? Her begged me until he died. The man is no longer alive, but I said to you here that if we had one quarrel to his death, it was that I refused to become the governor of Anambra state. There were many Nnewi people who wanted to become governor but once they went to him he would say no. “I am pleading with Ojeligbo to go become the governor of Anambra state”. I told Peter that I wasn’t running. I am a man of the centre whether I hold a position or not. I am one of the few people whom before you take any position at the centre, I must be consulted. Whether my views would make an impact or not, I am one of those that they would consult and look, we do not want you to hear it from outside, this is what we want to do. Whether I agree or not is a different thing. But I have always learnt in life that humility is one of the key qualities of leadership, and trust and confidence between you and other people is crucial and critical. So I have never abused the trust and confidence that people have in me. I come from a very humble background and I know what God has done for me and I don’t abuse it. And I don’t do it pretending. I am never envious of anybody. I am not a money man. Those who are multimillionaires and are younger than me haven’t seen half of what I have seen. I don’t give a hoot. But I know I can sit down here with this handset of mine and get things done. For a thing people would crisscross the whole country, I can sit down here and by the grace of God, with one phone call I can get it done.
ATM: There is this worry amongst some of our people as it concerns grooming of leaders. Many feel that emerging leaders from Awka are those who cannot compete favourable in governance, as against what obtains in other communities where bright minds are given the opportunity to showcase themselves. Many feel that given your position, you should facilitate the grooming of young and bright leaders for the future of the town.
Sen. Obi: I start by saying again that both living and dead, no Awka man has placed Awka people in positions of authority more than I have done. I stand to be challenged on that. When I do this, what am I doing? When Okechukwu became President-general, he had a summit. When I spoke, I said to the Awka people, there are some thing that were common sayings in the days of old. They seem not to be working out well for us as a people and we have to discard them. One of the is that an Awka man does not serve. Today, all of you come to me as Leader. I served. I served Zik. I served Tunji Braitwaith. I served Emeka Ojukwu. I served Sola Saraki. I served Ekwueme. Bukola Saraki was Senate President but until he left that office few months ago, he could not sit and look at me eyeball to eyeball. George Idowu would come to me and say Oga Ojeligbo, you know sey this your younger brother no dey fit look you for face o. I trained him politically. We used to have dinner with the father by 1am, and then discuss politics until 3pm before Buky would come and brief the father about Societe General Bank where I was a Director and a shareholder. This was given to me not by my own contributions, but by contribution of my own hardwork to building Sola Saraki. The compensation I got was him giving me shares in Societe General Bank and making me a director. I was DG of his presidential campaign from 1990 to 1994 but I did not accept any payment because I said, you are a politician and I am a politician, you can’t be paying me. He gave me a vehicle but I was using my own vehicle. At the end of the day, what I got in return was becoming a shareholder of Societe General Bank and a director until the bank folded. An Awka man does not serve (onye Awka anar’agba odibo). What is odibo (service). So you sit down with your agemate who is jobless and look at each other in the face and make jokes all day. Our attitudes must change because we puff ourselves up without nothing. The Agbenu people serve and after that they are set up. But we puff ourselves without nothing. The Awka man would walk in here and shake hands with you. He walks outside and shakes the man out there then comes back and shakes you again. That’s what jobless people do. And then he hails you with your title name. These are just unnecessary distractions. And then they say that they Awka people play (Awka n’akpali amu). Don’t other people play? But they know that there is time for play and time for work. How many Awka persons are amongst the notable wealthy Anambra men? Because of our pride, our neighbours are making sure that we don’t get to where we should. That statement credited to Dim Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu was a statement Peter Obi made to Prof. Au. Nnonyelu and Okey Nwanna (Omenyi) the day I was installed as the first and only High Chief of Awka in 2006. They were walking from St. Mary’s Catholic Church field where the event took place to my house and they were challenging Peter Obi over development in Awka. He said he would build nothing in Awka because Awka already has the capital status. And then somebody told you the Late Dim said that. No. People just sit back and cook up things that they don’t know about.
ATM: Thank you, Sir. This is rather personal though. One of the fallouts of the Awka leadership crisis was that sometime last year, some persons including yourself were purportedly ostracized. Though funny because it is in itself unconstitutional, how did you take it?
Sen. Obi: C’mon, that was some rabble rousers expressing their excitement. It was a joke carried too far. I mean, who are they to ostracize me? Where would they get the law to enforce such decision? Don’t forget, I am a lawmaker and once a lawmaker, always a lawmaker. And who went to beg them when they assembled again to reverse their decision? You see, that’s the level of triviality I talk about. The Ozo people must be reminded that the Ozo group is a society and that is why every Tom, Dick and Harry can be an Ozo man. If you have money you simply pay to join. In spite of all the monies that they share, have they ever thought of taking out 5% of it for the development of Awka? I used to confront them. Ozo Awka has no constitutional function in Awka affairs. I said this to them in their meeting. The truth be told, if something were to happen in Awka today, government would not come to Ozo Awka to find out what happened because they do not know of the existence of such group, neither would government come to Ndi Obi because I am no longer in government. The only thing they may do is to tell me that they are coming to Awka to do something, for my information because of my position in the society. They know that they can’t come to Awka without telling me. Not because I would do anything but because of my own personal recognition as a leader in my own right – positions I’ve held, jobs I’ve done, etc. Nobody knows you. So stop deceiving yourselves. Obiano does not recognize Ozo Awka. If he wants anything, he would go to the traditional institution or to the administrative institution. So, I cannot join them in self-delusion.
ATM: All these point to a direction. There seems to be a disconnect in Awka’s political substructure with several institution not aligning, but struggling instead to be accommodated. Could this be the reason why we have found ourselves in the present situation?
Sen. Obi: Well for now, I have decided to sit back and watch how things evolve. Thank God that God has given me good health. When you allow people with shady characters to be the ones deciding your faith, that’s what you get. As young men who are educated and have a future, you must ask yourselves some questions. Is this the kind of leadership you want to bequeath to generations unborn? If the answer is yes, so be it. But if the answer is no, what do we do? It does not take a crowd to change a society, my dear brothers. Our brothers in America and Canada under the umbrella of Awka Union in America and Canada used to invite me every year and I would go. I told them the truth. You cannot say you have a President-General (a sensible community) who is the President-General (of ADUN) of all Awka both home and in the diaspora, and then you come here in Canada and say you have another president-general? It is wrong. The last meeting they invited me and they said I told them that they shouldn’t have a president-general, and to that extent it seems as if I am not in tandem with them and all of that. So the issue was should they call me to the high table or not? The Eze-Uzu was there and he told them that they would walk out. I didn’t even know what was happening. Normally I come to a function and I just go and hide myself somewhere until I am invited to the high table. I didn’t even know they were discussing that. If I knew, I would have walked out. So, all the invites I’ve been getting I just ignore them. I pay my money, stay in the best hotels befitting my status and then hear some funny stories! I speak truth to power everywhere I am. There is no country I go to without visiting the president of the country, at least in Africa. Any country in Africa I go to, before my arrival our ambassador will tell them that this person is coming and they would go and look at the profile. When I arrive the ambassador will receive me at the airport and say the president would like to have dinner with you tomorrow. So if I can do that, why would I not be able to say to my kit and kin that this is wrong? This is not how things are done. So, you the young ones, the ball is in your court.
ATM: Sir, there is the contention that the given the poor state of the Nigerian economy at the moment, the dependence on government funding for municipal development may not yield fruit. There’s been the suggestion that Awka as a municipal community should tap into global multilateral funding for local development and it is believed that you can facilitate this.
Sen. Obi: You see, there are some of these western nations and their missions here that have facilities to help rural areas. I have done that in the past. I brought the Canadian government to do some work with regards to water. I also brought the Japanese government here when Tony got in. Now, how would I go and bring them with all these misunderstandings and cracks here and there? They also have a way of carrying out their due diligence to find out the situation in the community. I wouldn’t want to mortgage my little reputation I have with some of them for a group of unserious people. They are still there and once things are sorted out and we are focused, we will get them. The ambassadors and high commissioners when they come and they go and present their letters of credence, I am one of the first ten if not five Nigerians that they visit as small as this place is and then we start exchanging visits. Until we get out acts together, I just don’t want to waste my time.
ATM: On a final note, Sir, may we get your final word for the town, for peace, and of course for youths like us who feel really back about the state of things in Awka.
Sen. Obi: The youth must be ready to rise up and call a spade a spade and not just a garden instrument. It is their future that is being truncated by people who have nothing to offer. Like I said earlier, a people get the government they deserve. If you want to put an end to it, you have ways of halting injustice. When you live as if injustice in the society has become part and parcel of you, and then nobody complains (it’s all well and good) and people live in absolute deceit, how can I be of help? I have been in politics for forty-one years but I’ve never been called on to come and account for any wrongdoing. I give God the glory. Any office that I call today and say I am coming be it the president’s or the vice-president’s, even the vice president will come out and receive me. But I always pray to impact the lives of the people of the community where I come from.