I have read commentaries and articles suggesting that the political conundrum in Abia lends itself to simplistic "Ohuhu" versus Ngwa love and hate relationship analysis. It is a wrong position that needs correction before pseudo historians adopt that theme.
For non Abians, "Ohuhu" represents the non Ukwa/Ngwa person and includes mostly those from old Bende division and settlers from other Igbo states.
If you carefully study the origins of the current crises it will dawn on you that it is more of Ngwa problem than even that of Ohuhu, hence the right characterization should be power struggle by the children of Abia.
Alex Otti who most of us know to be an Arochukwu man right from his registration documents at Uniport in the 80s sensed the likely power shift to the Ngwa Area of Abia State in 2015 and decided to literally con people from that area by building a house at Isiala Ngwa in 2012 at a town where his father lived and worked all his life.
It was the leaders of the Ngwa community that gave his attempt at changing origin legitimacy by gathering to give him a chieftaincy title and also declare him as an authentic son. If you understand our culture and tradition in Igboland very well you will know that by that singular act they adopted him as one of their own and hence estopped from making future contrary claims. Indeed if PDP had zoned the governorship to Ngwa land he would have been qualified to contest without regards to the fact that he originally claimed Arochukwu, built his fabled "no place like home" mansion there and even reportedly reburied his father at Arochukwu after exhuming him from Ngwa land.
If you settle in a place and you are accepted as an indigene of that place by the traditional authorities it will be tough to traditionally deny you rights of indigeneship. It is only the same traditional authorities that can disown you, if you offend them. Since the people of Nvosi did not disown Otti, he is their adopted son.
Fortunately, the ticket was zoned to Abia South senatorial zone and Otti's new village is in Abia central that produced Governor T A Orji. It was that realization that made Otti dump PDP in October 2014 to try his luck with APGA. That decision had nothing to do with people of Abia north or old Bende clan whose political leaders had agreed already that the next Governor should come from Abia South Senatorial zone.
Governor T A Orji is today receiving fire from Uche Ogah's supporters because he refused to yield to the plot to keep power in old Bende by supporting Ogah. Recently he confirmed that when Ogah met him with Sab Ejimofor to ask for support he pointedly told him to please wait and support Abia South then run in 2023. To date neither Uche Ogah nor Ejimofor has denied that statement released by Ochendo's spokesman.
Interestingly, many Ngwa old political war horses also dislike Ochendo because they expected that power will come to them. In fact some respected Ngwa politicians have authored articles to abuse Ochendo for not backing them (they think they are the irreplaceable best of Ngwaland) as against the David (Okezie) that they think God has no business selecting.
Laughable thoughts of men who want to play God.
Even looking at the Ogah distraction, people are missing the point that it was an Ngwa man, F N Nwosu, that left his house in Abia and traveled to Lagos with his gamji document to meet Uche Ogah. If Nwosu had not made that obnoxious trip Uche Ogah wouldn't have 'guyed' him and there wouldn't have been Abang. I can't see any old Bende conspiracy with a guy man guying a gamji man. There are even ongoing court cases bothering on allegations that our brother Uche used similar method to guy a woman in Lagos. Isuikwuato and old Bende people have nothing to do with that.
Guy men guy people.
The right question to ask is why Ngwa leaders failed to move early to reconcile their sons and daughters that lost fair and square to Governor Ikpeazu during the primaries. Is Nwosu beyond traditional authorities in Ngwa land? How long did it take before Emeka Wogu endorsed Dr Ikpeazu? I am not very knowledgable about the Acho Nwakanma situation but I know that during the polls I confronted his core supporter at Aba who was selling rubbish lies against Dr Ikpeazu. I also read that he joined the governorship jamboree suit at Osisioma high court to claim the same governorship Uche Ogah, Otti and Nwosu are battling to steal.
I can boldly state that if our traditional authorities and elders had done the right thing we won't be discussing this issue today. It is their failure that we now want to pass off as Ohuhu versus Ngwa.
Nobody should even bring in paid bloggers and social media operatives because they are simply earning a living out of a crises. After the Supreme Court they will realign and support any other person that is willing to pay for their services. After all I know many that have complained to me that Governor Ikpeazu while obviously a good man who is determined to do good in Abia but because he didn't appoint or pay them they will fight him. To such people you will never read me joining issues with them. Ngwa and Ohuhu born bloggers are involved.
Obviously this is not a case of Ohuhu versus Ngwa but political struggle by Abia sons. The Governor has made it repeatedly clear that he is the Governor of the whole of Abia State and continued to act as such in private and public.
Personally I have heard persons of Ngwa origin accuse the Governor of not being partial to them and also heard those from old Bende complaining that he is not allowing them to chop like before. Recently an Umuahia traditional prime minister told a journalist that his anger with the governor stems from the Governor stopping payments that used to come to him and other elders on monthly basis. Whereas an Ngwa person complained that while others were Governor their people took over the Govt house and civil service whereas Governor Ikpeazu is refusing to allow them to do same.
All I learn from such complaints is that the Governor is on the right path. More so when I know for a fact that after he resumed on his first day of work as Governor he awarded contracts and flagged off the reconstruction of 4 roads at Aba. What many do not know is that the next contract he awarded was Abiriba ring road which in kilometer terms is longer than the 4 roads he awarded at Aba.
That is just the essential Governor Ikpeazu that is conscious of his responsibilities to all segments of Abia.
By the way even me have something against our Governor. I personally wanted him to concentrate his infrastructure renewal effort in the first 3 years of his administration at Aba but he refused to do that and decided to fix roads at Umuahia, Abiriba, Nkporo, Ohafia, Umunneochi etc. Whereas I believed he shouldn't listen to noise and focus on Aba and rebuild it then use resources from Aba to develop the rest of Abia. Apparently the governor sees farther than me and understand the politics of our people better.
It is natural for people to hear noise around a governor and blame him for such noise. That is why those working with a Governor need to be careful how they talk or treat others.
If people call a governor's aide and he abuses them the sin will be attributed to the governor. If a governor's aide start discussing Ngwa versus Ohuhu at beer parlors and even in private people think that is the governor's mood or position too. When governor's aides use security agents to chase away people who want to see them, it is the Governor that is blamed. Even when they refuse to visit their villages and give common folks something they blame the governor. Strangely if people ask them for help some use the governor as excuse with statements like "Okezie no gree release money".
Finally, I must point out that based on everything I know about Governor Ikpeazu I can assure Ndi Abia that he does not see the current political challenges as Ohuhu versus Ngwa. He believes that it is merely political struggle by those who want his seat from Ngwa and Ohuhu axis that make up Abia. He is aware that all former Abia Governors faced similar challenges and hence he is determined not to allow the situation derail him from a mission he agreed with God and the people of Abia State to uplift the land of Abia.
If you want to see a greater state emerge please join hands with the Governor and don't look left or right. We have a God prepared and ordained leader who is on a mission to do great things that will make all of us proud. The size and scope of his mission is enough to scare enemies of progress into plotting how to distract him.
Just be assured that Governor Ikpeazu will serve us till May 29th 2023. Aka Chukwu di ya, onweghi ihe madu puru ime.
Thank you for reading.
John Okiyi Kalu, A Technology Consultant Writes From Umuahia.