By George Oyedepo
It is so difficult to be immune or mute to both the fact that Kogi exists, and how it even exists. The Confluence State, as it is proudly referred to by indigenes and residents, has become a confluence of absurdities
The problem is, these days, with a unanimous apparent disgust and disdain for the governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, his men and quality of governance, it is unclear which confluence Kogites and others refer to when they call it the Confluence State.
The recent elections have proven that Kogi’s reputation and identity as the confluence is really true and consistent. This consistency is something most other states cannot pride themselves as having.
The most important and most noticeable consistent confluence in Kogi now is not a natural phenomenon like two rivers, but the confluence of a low bar, the mixture and confluence of mediocrity in governance.
I have been hearing, since the elections, that the governor and his men believe they have earned a second ticket and superiorly acquitted themselves because they delivered President Muhammadu Buhari by the state voting overwhelmingly for him and the All Progressives Congress (APC). How absurd!
In an election where you are not the candidate, how is that a yardstick of your scorecard become so rambunctious, clanging loudly, making no sense but pretending to run a government? Bello recently prevented political appointees of a certain extraction from their duty posts in the Government House because their areas didn’t deliver victorious elections to the President.
You have a failed and failing government blaming everyone but itself for its failure, wasting its time senselessly investigating the electoral results of others instead of looking inwards and looking in the mirror to be confronted with its own political failures and disasters, misgovernment, non performance and the reality of its rejection by the people who never voted them in but gave them a chance, yet they failed woefully.
A government and administration that holds the historic worldwide record of squandering political capital it did not have or earn, but which was given to it free by death and it was so immature, naïve, inexperienced, callous and arrogant to find the best way to maximize that political capital. Abeg, second base jare!
Let us even analyze performance. I have heard their new modus operandi is to abuse or mudsling anyone and any shadow who their minds consider possible replacement for their mediocrity. Everyone that is mentioned as a possible replacement becomes marked as an enemy who has never done anything good. Recently, they went after a retiring Director General, claiming he charged people to offer employment because that one expressed interest in running for governorship.
That is their attack line. Nothing about what they have done? The problem is that they will have to shadow box the whole Kogi because every single person in the state is better qualified and will do far better.
Bello will deceive himself to claim that he delivered Kogi Central to the President. He should be reminded that the district has always voted with and stayed with the President in every election before now. Get real, you did not deliver the votes, if anything the President delivered himself and you are falsely hoping to use him to deliver yourself. Your deliverance will be impossible. Natasha Akpoti is said to have won the Kogi Central election and prayerfully will have her stolen mandate restored, so what did Mr. Governor deliver?
In the East, where few individuals and the Audu political family worked for the APC, the results are out and good, but in Olamaboro where Onoja comes from, the elections were marred by violence, ballot box snatching, gun shots and intimidation.
A useless government which unleashed a group to harass a senator on his hospital bed so that a recall will take him out while he was incapacitated. After spending what should have been spent to pay the salaries of workers on the failed recall, somebody would have thought they learned some lessons, but they would not because it is impossible for them to learn.
And when elections came, they harassed the senator again, prevented him from campaigning and even tried to stop him for entering the state to cast his vote but they still lost the election to him. A governor that cannot secure a recall in absentia or win an election against a candidate in absentia must be a pure political lightweight. And he wants a second term. How absurd.
Governorship, they believe, has become their birthright, so anyone who dreams of aspiring must be dealt with. Third base jare! People who didn’t wait for their achievement or performance to give them names have only taken names for themselves.
One said he is His Excellency and the White Lion. Another says he is The Oracle. What a confluence of absurdity when the lion is tamed and the oracle demystified! He is no longer an oracle; in fact, he is just a common cuticle.
That is a confluence of absurdities in a state where the late Prof Pius Adesanmi hailed from.
Yes, there is a confluence of rivers in Kogi, a confluence of natural and human resources, a confluence of diverse cultures and people, but more than that a confluence of absurdities.
May Nigeria succeed, and may Kogi not drag that success down.
Author of this post is Oyedepo resident in Lokoja, Kogi State capital