Sunday, January 11, 2015

Tony Okoroji's Open Letter To Jonathan

Your Excellency,
Please forgive me for writing you
through this medium. I can imagine
how busy you must be, especially at
this time that the elections are by
the corner. With the many
gatekeepers you have, if I posted
the letter, the chance of your ever
reading it can be imagined. I don't
even know if NIPOST is still working.
Do you know, sir? Since I am not a
governor, a party chairman, an oba,
a minister, a man of God, etc, I
reckon that your gate keepers will
be infuriated that I even had the
effrontery to address a letter to you.
I can imagine one of them reacting
in anger: Who this Tony Okoroji think
him be sef? Who told him that he
can send a letter to the C-in C, the
president of the largest black nation
on earth?' They would have torn my
letter into a thousand shreds and
thrown the shreds into a trash can.
Please believe me; I could not
control the desperate urge to reach
you and express myself, dear leader.
Honestly, I have become worried
that your gatekeepers are behaving
like they own you; they are the only
ones who love you and that you
should listen to them only. It is a lie!
The truth is that there are millions of
us in this country who genuinely
think that you are an ok guy and
wish you well.
I hope sir that you will be kind
enough to tell those guys of yours
not to call the security people to
teach me a hot lesson for this my
foolishness. You know that you rule
over a large country, in fact the
most populous in Africa. In this very
large country, we are made up of all
kinds; the brilliant, prophets, seers,
419ers, magicians, the foolish, etc. If
by any chance, you do not like
anything I have written in this letter,
for the sake of my children, forgive
me and just say to yourself, 'he is
just one of those foolish Nigerians
that I rule.'
I am really scared of your guys. They
might even say to you that just like
in Fr. Mbaka's case, Ngige has given
me N800 million to write this letter.
Sorry sir, with oil price dancing
sekem-sekem, is there still that kind
of money left in Nigeria? If Ngige has
that kind of cash to throw around,
then things can't be that bad. My
boss, if you want, you can
investigate this: I have never met
Mbaka. I do not know Ngige. I have
no business with Buhari or Osinbajo
or Tinubu or Amaechi or even OBJ or
any of the rascals who keep heaping
insults on you. My president, you are
the only one I know. I swear, nobody
has given meshishi.
Before I go any further, let me join
others to express my condolence on
the recent passing on of your dear
sister. May the Almighty receive her
soul and give you the fortitude to
bear the loss.
Your excellency, my dear president,
I love my country with all my heart
but I am also a very proud Igbo man.
People say that Igbos do not support
their own. That is not quite true. The
truth is that Igbos don't like to be
made a fool of. You can bear witness
to the fact that four years ago, when
your handlers reminded everyone
that your full name is Goodluck
Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan and you put
on the red cap for which we are
known, Igbos came out in droves to
support you. You were considered
their brother. Our people voted for
you en masse.
Your gatekeepers might not tell you
but the joke around town is that
once the election was over, Azikiwe
disappeared from your name, the
red cap disappeared from your
wardrobe and the black bowler hat
returned. You came back to being a
100 percent Ijaw man and Igbos
were left alone to continue to bear
their many burdens.
A few days to the last Christmas, I
was stuck in a bad traffic jam on the
Niger bridge between Asaba and
Onitsha, the same bridge built about
50 years ago by the government led
by a Muslim man, Alhaji Abubakar
Tafawa Balewa. Many times we have
been promised a second Niger
bridge to reduce our pain. Mr.
President sir, I am not an ethnic
jingoist but just put yourself in our
shoes. How do you think we feel?
For six years, an Azikiwe has been in
charge at Aso Rock and the more we
look, the less we see the second
Niger bridge or anything else of real
Some say that the Igbos have no
king. Maybe not in the same sense
that other people believe that a
certain child of God was born to rule
over them. We believe in hard work
and merit. We are certain that if
there is fairness and a level playing
field, the Igbo man will thrive
anywhere. With the Igbos, you have
to earn your kingship. The late Zik of
Africa and Owelle of Onitsha, the
great Nnamdi Azikiwe whose name
you took, earned his kingship. Go
around much of Igboland today,
almost everyone seriously seeking
office will not just put out a poster
but one carrying his photograph and
that of the late Ikemba Nnewi, Eze
Igbo, Dim Chukwuemeka Odimegwu
Ojukwu. Ojukwu was an Igbo King.
You may therefore understand my
horror when it was announced last
week that one Femi Fani Kayode has
been appointed your campaign
spokesman. I am usually a very
tolerant guy but I instantly felt like
vomiting. Femi Fani Kayode?! Is this
not the same guy that gleefully went
before the world to claim that he
had slept with Her Excellency,
Bianca Ojukwu, your ambassador
and wife of the revered Igbo King,
Eze Guburugburu, Chukwuemeka
Odimegwu Ojukwu? If your
excellency does not know, what this
guy did was to slap the face of every
self-respecting Igbo man. It was
sacrilege. I find it incredulous that in
the whole of Nigeria, they could not
find you a better person than this
man who goes about boasting about
the women he has gone to bed with.
Mr. President sir, are you going to
send this man to Igboland to speak
on your behalf? Tufiakwa! Mbah!
Whoever foisted that decision on
you is not your friend. He does not
want the Igbos or any other
discerning Nigerian to vote for you.
I don't care what anybody says, you
are an inspiration to millions of poor
people across Africa. For a guy who
had no shoes to go on to get a BSc,
MSc and PhD and swiftly move on to
be a deputy governor, governor,
vice president and president, the
office over which many in Nigeria
have lost their lives, is nothing but
awesome. This is a country where
there are hundreds of thousands of
young people who can only dream
about a university degree not
because they are not smart but
because their country is not smart.
Your excellency, you know that the
last election was a cake walk. Please
do not listen to any of these your
many hangers on who tells you that
the situation is still the same.
Nigerians are in no mood for a phone
call and 'I love you' this coming
valentine day election. The love has
soured. The mood has changed a lot.
I am afraid. I don't know how you are
going to pull this iron out of the fire.
Have I forgotten that your name is
Goodluck? No sir! It is just that this
time, you may need all the luck you
were born with and more.
Mr. President, sir! How can I get so
close to you and my life does not
change? I am sure you will think I am
not a true Nigerian if I close this this
letter without asking the all-
important question: Anything for the
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