It is widely believed that Credibility is the value of a leader’s currency that must always be priced at the currency market of public opinion. It is no longer news in the ears of the Edo electorates that the vast majority of our politicians desperately desires to be enthroned not necessarily on the candid platform of credibility but by taking an ugly and disheartening path of assassinating the characters of their perceived opponents. They are most times successful due to the gullibility of the majority of the electorates.
Engr .(Dr) Chris Ogiemwonyi will forever remain clean and green on the lips of edolites not because he was a saint but because in the means of stiff political terrain in the state, he stood firm and achieved a height at a time many thought he couldn’t. Going down history lane, it became evident as the young Ogiemwonyi grew in the public service that indeed he was destined to lead. In most of his talks ,he has mentioned and vividly expressed his childhood experiences, which depicted princely characteristics that embedded an unshaken courage to challenge, correct and transform any malfunctioning institution. It was the recognition of his exploits as a vibrant, dynamic youth that earned him the traditional Royal Coral beads by the Benin Monarch, Omo N' Oba N' Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Erediauwa,CFR found Engr. Ogiemwonyi worthy to be recognised of his contributions to the development of Benin Kingdom, Edo state and Nigeria.
It has been said that the true test of a man is ascertained in moments of trials and tribulations. Engr. Ogiemwonyi was heavily struck by a calculated and circulated strategy geared towards striping the faithful Edo electorates of what they would have enjoyed in his better Edo agenda. The do or die, power hungry politicians created a stigma between him and his beloved Edolites by promoting the falsehood of "arrogant". Even the most dictatorial and erratic class of leaders have always accorded respect to the anointed, and isn’t it funny enough to believe that a man of the prestigious caliber of the religious knighthood would not respect his governor ? May God help us to play politics of conscience. Being a man of unquestionable integrity, his better Edo agenda was punctured on the grounds of falsehood yet he relaxed, searched his conscience and stepped to challenge the falsehood to prove that his integrity remains unscathed. Indeed this is a true mark of greatness, a symbol of a lion and the strength of a stallion.
This false "disloyal " episode undoubtedly caused a stoppage to his divine continuity mandate to Dennis Osadebey Avenue ,but God has never failed in vindicating the innocent.
Someone would ask me, why did Engr . Ogiemwonyi not win at the APC primaries ; the fact remains he never lost that election but it was hinged on technicalities and highly institutionalized grand conspiracies orchestrated by the powers that be simply because of his support for President Buhari's integrity. They see him as another Buhari in making who will not play the dirty ball of politics with them when he gets to Government house. He never wanted to forment trouble but he chose to step aside and asked his supporters to support the APC governorship candidate for the September, 10 election.
Engr . Ogiemwonyi's political castle/structure did not collapse neither did he lose the election. What happened was a high conspiracy perpetrated by highly placed individuals and authorities; hence, as a man of peace that he is; left that to its fate in order not to endanger the peaceful state of Edo .
That he lost, or not fail, should be left for debates and academic exercises to determine. But all the factual appraisals and re-appraiasals of Engr . Ogiemwony'si person have shown that he did not fail. He was misconstrued!
Is Engr. Ogiemwonyi arrogant....? HABA !And do I hear you used 'arrogant' to allude to the person of Engr Ogiemwonyi ? My brother/sister, you 're mistaken courage and outspokeness for arrogance. One of the greatest assets and qualities of Engr Ogiemwonyi during his time at the civil service was that he spoke out when the lily-livered and gutless cowards opted to be silent; unlike the present Emperor who would mesmerize the members of the public with lies and half-truths and would leave the people in confusion and totally unenlightened about his policies- Ogiemwonyi never left any one in doubt through words and deeds where he stood on any and every issue at all.
To cynics, his outspokeness spells arrogance.Ogiemwonyi makes his position known at every point in time; that is why any one could take his words and policy statements to the bank knowing fully well that Ogiemwonyi is not given in to anything like fudging and mudging things. He believes that we need courage, conviction and hardwork to move the state forward!
Was Ogiemwonyi lazy..?
Ogiemwonyi was not a lazy leader, though he had his shortcomings as a human being. He is a man who believes in his visions, he believes in following them religiously even when the larger people do not understand the immediate gains of such vision propelled programmes or projects.
Well, plausibly, he was 'too obsessed' with his visions because he thought the best for Edo state and was eager to deliver on that noble venture. He was not deluded with his visions rather, the people misunderstood and misconstrued his policies and visions, like every reformer all over the world are misconstrued and misunderstood. But at the end, they laugh last.
Ogiemwonyi was not interested in his immediate applause and praises from the people, he's rather only interested in bequeathing those legacies believing that at the end of the day, the people and history will judge him not just by what his unrepetant cynics and political opponents would want them believe but by his own deeds.
- Jeffery Igbinigie
A public affairs commentator
wrote from Benin