It has become imperative to advise Mr. Peter Obi’s campaigners to look for more substantive issues to campaign with. Regaling us with his “sterling record” which on the contrary is uninspiring, is quite insulting to the discerning.
Let’s interrogate the issues they love to regurgitate. First, they parrot the saving of N75 billion in banks for his successor, but the question is: what is the economic sense locking up that staggering amount in banks when the state was in dire need of critical investments in key sectors?
Obi reels out development statistics from China and Bangladesh with reckless abandon even when they are a misnomer. Obi loves China. His Next Cash and Carry sure sells a lot of Chinese products. It is no surprise he became a billionaire from trading!
The former governor keeps talking about SMEs as the only sector government must put money into. Let us ask him how many SME operators he enabled and supported in 8 years as Governor of Anambra State.
In Lagos, the state boasts a very structured funding system that supports SMEs. In the past seven years, Lagos can point to over 5000 SMEs that have received grants through the Lagos Employment Trust and Innovation Fund for Tech startups. Let those praising Obi provide the record of how Obi catalysed small and medium scale businesses in Anambra State.
His most bandied achievement of saving N75 billion in banks was debunked by his successor, Willie Obiano. Obi, according to Obiano, left N100 billion liabilities for him in due obligations to civil servants, pensioners and contractors. In the real sense, when the liabilities are deducted from the supposed savings, Obi actually left a debt burden of N25billion.
I am one of those who strongly believe Obi was just satisfied with doing routine governmental duties as governor in Anambra. His record of service is average compared to most of his counterparts in other states. Can any of his supporters mention anything novel he did or the grand vision he espoused while in office? We wait!
What is not contestable, however, is that under Obi, Onitsha and Nnewi, the two biggest commercial towns in Anambra, did not witness any form of transformation. Awka, the state capital, is still sleepwalking and already dwarfed by the groundbreaking development being unleashed on Abakaliki, the capital of Ebonyi State by Governor David Umahi.
Obi has been moving around the country to woo his party delegates. He is not espousing any grand governance and development vision for the country. He apparently does not have one. He didn’t lay out any for Anambra in the 8 years he governed the state. Sam Omatseye, Chairman of The Nation Newspaper Editorial Board described Obi’s vision as one of ‘pouch economy and ogbele economy.” Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, once said Obi only understands “container economy.”
Let Obi’s supporters desist from taking us for a ride. Many of us are still very discerning and can separate facts from fiction.
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