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AS FIRST ENUGU FLYOVER BRIDGE IS READY FOR USE 

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By Samson Ezea 


Before now the traffic snarl along the popular T-Junction is hectic, daunting and nauseating. Precious time and human energy were often wasted. 


Properties along the axis and its environs depreciated. Businesses witnessed low patronage. 
There was no alternative route or road to get into Enugu metropolis and its adjoining locations, communities and roads from the Nike Lake road,  apart from the popular and regular traffic-laden T-Junction. 


The junction was a nightmare and torn on the flesh of its users. At a stage, the fear of the traffic gridlock at the junction became the beginning of wisdom for Enugu residents, visitors and passersby. 


Governor Ugwuanyi saw the challenge and noiselessly took the bull by the horn. He, first constructed from the scratch the Nike Lake Junction-Harmony Estate- Adoration ground link road that terminated at somewhere in Emene. 


With this, the regular traffic gridlock at the T-Junction reduced drastically, but usually resurface during peak periods. 


To provide permanent solution to the traffic menace and to open up the area which has witnessed mass influx of people, Governor Ugwuanyi embarked on the construction of the first flyover bridge at the T-Junction. 
Continously, consistently and dedicatedly, the project is almost completed within a short time and will soon be put to use. 


With this signature project of Governor Ugwuanyi which is unprecedented in the history of the state, the people of the state and beyond, especially those resident at Nike Lake axis and its environs, commuters and transporters that usually use the road to get into the metropolis and neighbouring states and communities will heave sigh of relief.

What a relief!!! What a giant stride!!! What a legacy project!!!

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Politics

[REJOINDER] ENUGU 2023: UGWUANYI, NWODO, UTAZI, OFOR, EDEOGA AND THE CONSPIRACY AGAINST ENUGU STATE

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My attention has been drawn to an article published today (May 19, 2022) online in The Cable . The article written by one nondescript fellow called Godwin Udeh, who obviously is suffering from identity crisis, is ill-intentioned, full of his vain imaginations and can, at best, be described as a potpourri of falsehood, wickedness and divisiveness. The author, obviously, is not from Awgu area. I can swear on my father’s grave on this.

By Malachy Chuma Ochie

His mission, evidently, is to sow seeds of discord, create enmity and bad blood in the State. He also intends to pitch Nkanu against Isi-Uzo. This is lamentable.

That he could not even own up his article of mischief is a mark of his cowardice and inclination for treachery and evil. I have checked out the register of NBA and there’s no entry as Godwin Udeh. Albeit, you are an incorrigible liar; and that underscores the lie you dished out to the public.

The kernel of Godwin Udeh’s ill-fated essay is anchored on the following grounds: that Isi-Uzo is Nsukka and therefore unqualified to contest the governorship of Enugu State; that it will be unconscionable for Gov. Ugwuanyi to contemplate an Isi-Uzo person as his successor; that Chijioke Edeoga is the cousin of the Governor; that the Nwodos of Ukehe, Igbo-Etiti LG are playing a mischievous power game to install their in-law, Chijioke Edeoga, as governor of Enugu State.

Mr. Godwin Udeh, in trying to justify his irresponsibility and supine understanding of the political dynamics of Enugu State, used so many unedifying qualifiers to refer to the Nwodos, Chuka Utazi and any other person that catches his fancy.

He even alluded that Chijioke Edeoga is such a pauper that the aggregate of his salaries as a Commissioner cannot afford a Prado Jeep. Let me address these issues in their outline.

 OF ISI-UZO, ENUGU-EAST ZONE AND NSUKKA

One conversant with the issues raised above would be forgiven if one runs away with the conclusion that Mr. Godwin Udeh is suffering from mental disorder bordering on schizophrenia. His assertion that Isi-Uzo is Nsukka is otiose, idiotic and maniacal.

Enugu State has three senatorial zones namely: Enugu-West, Enugu-East and Enugu-North. The Governorship, since 1999, has rotated among these senatorial zones.

Isi-Uzo is in Enugu-East senatorial zone. For the records, there is no senatorial zone in Nigeria known as or called Nkanu senatorial zone. I recall that recently, prominent Nkanu personalities, somebody like Chief Anike Nwoga and others, have at various times clarified this issue by reiterating the fact that Isi-Uzo is a bonafide LG in Enugu-East Zone; and that no LG in the zone is superior to the other.

Did Isi-Uzo force themselves into Enugu-East? The answer is No! It was Nkanu elders that made the move to excise Isi-Uzo from Nsukka into Enugu-East Senatorial zone on the grounds that they were their lost kiths and kin.

Nkanu had always depended on Isi-Uzo to win elections; why wouldn’t Nkanu reciprocate this gesture, especially when Isi-Uzo is presenting a credible and qualified candidate in Chijioke Edeoga?

Why all of a sudden should the Godwin Udehs of this world rise to trumpet the puerile assumption that Isi-Uzo is no longer in Enugu-East Zone?

Perhaps, Godwin Udeh does not realize that Anioma is Igbo, yet they are ruling in Delta State; the Ikwerres are Igbo but they are in-charge in Rivers State.

Until the Nigerian constitution affirms a new political delineation, Isi-Uzo remains in Enugu-East Senatorial Zone; and to that extent qualifies to enjoy all the benefits thereto including aspiring for the governorship of Enugu State.

 IS CHIJIOKE EDEOGA GOV. UGWUANYI’S COUSIN?

The allegation that Chijioke Edeoga is a cousin to Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi is ridiculous. First, both men are from two different senatorial zones; they are from different LGs and have no blood relationship. Please do your background checks and you will find out the lie in this claim.

Therefore, your crass reference to Dr. Okwy Nwodo, Nnia Nwodo, Chuka Utazi, Chris Ofor and Okey Ezea is unfortunate. Whereas the men you set out to malign and impugn are men who have distinguished themselves in various spheres of life and in nation-building, it smacks of disrespect for elders that you could stoop so low in portraying them in the most vile language merely to rationalize your pedantic ideology of nihilism and atavistic inclination towards the annihilation of Isi-Uzo.

Your pity-pat, thumb-sucking and naïve blackmail on Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi is jaundiced and dead on arrival.

 WHY CHIJIOKE EDEOGA STANDS OUT AMONGST THE REST

For the avoidance of doubt, Ugwuanyi has assured Ndi-Enugu that he would, at the appointed time “select a candidate from Enugu-East who will sustain his multiple legacies of peace, infrastructural development, industrialization and human capital development”.

The Governor would not want anyone with multiple baggage to succeed him. Look at the array of persons you mentioned and tell me which of them is not heavily ensconced in corruption and had been a regular visitor to EFCC, ICPC or Code of Conduct Bureau and other anti-graft agencies.

In other words, it is not Chijioke Edeoga that has unearthed the putrid deeds of these aspirants but like our people say, their day of reckoning has come and their sins have found them out. So, it is not the exposition of the burdens on these men that are necessarily the matter here, but rather people like you whose self-conceited sycophancy incapacitates to make objective analysis of how a combination of negative forces ushered your preferred men into the corridors of power, whereby they stumbled and fumbled with power, not knowing what to do with it.

 FACTS ARE SACROSANCT

I will like to make one more point before I come to another issue you raised in your article (if an article it is): facts are very stubborn things; and they are never silenced by merely wishing them away.

Facts are facts, period  – whether or not they are rooted in the purview of a man you despise. Governor Ugwuanyi cannot be maligned by people like you just because he believes in equity, justice, fairness and competence; neither can Chijioke be castigated because he boasts of immaculate track records far beyond the comprehension of his distant runners-up.

Rather, demagogues and liars like Godwin Udeh are identified against the factual background of the lies they tell; by reference to their lies- and you have them in plenty.

What becomes implicitly clear is that Chijioke Edeoga’s state-wide acceptance and marketability have become your greatest source of headache. But you know what? Our people say that a good product immediately commands extensive market share. That is the truth here.

Thus, your advocacy for the return of Enugu State to Egypt is an obvious call for the return of Hammer House of Horror in Enugu State, the preview of which we saw in the tragedy that befell Chiene I. Chiene few days ago.

It is therefore not surprising that in your article you regurgitated the advocacy for atavism in the state, which in blaming the governor and others, reinforced the fascist link between anti-democratic principles and a grim contempt for the people’s power.  

 CAMPAIGN OF CALUMNY

Your claims that “the devious schemes are being executed using the governor’s name to deceive and intimidate people”… and that “it is worrisome that Edeoga’s campaign activities bear the imprimatur and trappings of connivance with the highest level of authority in the state”, are understandable since they are the generic traits of Isi-Uzo haters, and advocates for the return of anarchy to Enugu State, which you recommend.

What is very clear from the above is that you have fallen into the same ditch as those who are “coming” and “going”, the same “man of the moment” and their cohorts – nothing but words everywhere; words anchored on frustration, failure and despair – “shenanigans”, “zoning”, political machinations”, “mystical forces”, “politically jinxed”, “fatal tumble”.

The only solution in terms of practical strategy is another phrase: “Accept defeat and join the winning team”. I believe you fell into these errors because, even as a lawyer, which you claimed you are, you lacked an adequate understanding of Enugu state’s political dynamics rooted in our history.  

 ALLEGATIONS OF CAMPAIGN OF CALUMNY

Your accusation that Chijioke Edeoga has been conducting his campaign with malignity is pitiable because you know you are lying to yourself.

If any governorship aspirant has conducted his campaigns in civility and openness, that aspirant is Chijioke Edeoga.

Little wonder he has been accepted by the people of Enugu State as the next Governor. Mr. Godwin Udeh, you claim to be from Awgu, but I doubt your citizenship of Awgu LG.

FUNDING CHIJIOKE EDEOGA CAMPAIGN

Finally, it is a measure of your delusion to assume that Chijioke Edeoga cannot afford to conduct his campaign. In your own estimation, he cannot afford a Prado Jeep, not even with his accumulated salaries as a Commissioner. One thing you do not know is that _Ka Isi-Uzo Jee Movement_ is a mass-based movement with men and women of means that are capable of the unexpected.

Chijioke Edeoga has enormous goodwill within and without; his goodwill is almost inexhaustible.

Let me shock you Sir, Chijioke Edeoga has been LG Chairman, Member, National Assembly, Special Adviser to the President and Commissioner.

But even with all these positions, Chijioke Edeoga has only two Prado jeeps, which he got in his two tenures as Commissioner in the state.

Remember, he was former Commissioner for  LG Affairs and later the Commissioner for Environment. Each tenure of Commissionership ended with a Prado jeep.

Any other car in his convoy belongs to his friends and supporters with verifiable ownership. Barack Obama, whose election campaign was massively funded by the American people    should be instructive here. God is not asleep.

 BILLBOARDS

The billboards you refered to are not sponsored by the Government. A closer observation of the billboards will reveal the persons or groups that sponsored them.

Chijioke Edeoga may not be a money bag but has a massive war-chest anchored on his immense public goodwill. 

I am sure you have not read Chijioke Edeoga’s profile. Please try and get a copy. I wish you luck.

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Politics

RE: ENUGU 2023: UGWUANYI, NWODO, UTAZI, OFFOR, EDEOGA AND THE CONSPIRACY AGAINST ENUGU STATE

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By Mr. George Okpeta

When I read recently on online media about a planned and well-oiled media attack against Enugu State Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi by some people from Nkanu axis and renegades of the Ebeano political family in a premeditated attempt to cajole him into choosing his successor from the so-called core Nkanu land, I was dismissive of it and took it with pinch of salt.

 I did so because some online media have published or peddled more rumours and fake news than verifiable news stories, especially as 2023 general elections draw near.

Recent developments, just few days to the commencement of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) primaries in Enugu had proved me wrong. Such is the trending article on social media titled “Enugu 2023; Ugwuanyi, Nwodo, Utazi, Ofor, Edeoga and the conspiracy against Enugu State written by one Godwin Udeh, who is not far from a hatchet jobber, operating with a Pseudo name to delude the people.

No doubt, Udeh’s article was characterised with cheap blackmail, malice and unfounded allegations against Gov. Ugwuanyi. This is a clear case of the owl crying in the night and the child dying in the morning.

Udeh’s jaundiced article is indeed the commencement of the planned media onslaught on Gov. Ugwuanyi by some groups from Nkanu axis to pitch him against Enugu people ahead of the governorship primaries and 2023 general elections. I am not Ugwuanyi’s spokesman neither am I Okey Ezea, Senator Chuka Utazi or Chris Offor’s media spin doctor. But that does not mean that I am not well informed or grounded on the issue at stake and write about it with facts. It is all about the rotation of governorship seat in Enugu state among the three Senatorial zones and the forthcoming PDP governorship primary. 

It is obvious that the writer of the article, Godwin Udeh, falsely accused Governor Ugwuanyi of colluding with the trio of Senator Chuka Utazi, Chris Offor and Okey Ezea to truncate the governorship zoning arrangement in the state and make former Commissioner of Environment, Barr. Chijioke Edeoga from Isi Uzo LGA the next Governor of Enugu State.

What a contradictory and concocted beer parlour allegations against Governor Ugwuanyi, a man who has said repeatedly that at the fullness of time, justice, equity and fairness will take pre-eminence in the choice of his successor. Why are people trying to be hurriedly pre-emptive of Governor Ugwuanyi in his choice of successor, even when the fullness of time has not elapsed?

Is it because of Gov. Ugwuanyi’s humility and democratic nature that has made some negative and paid elements in the state to cast aspersion on his person, do anything they like and go scot-free?

It is not surprising that this premeditated, sponsored and diversionary media campaign of calumny against Gov. Ugwuanyi and Barr. Edeoga is being unleashed now.

 The timing has shown that those behind it are not far from those that are contesting or have vested interests in the governorship primaries and elections in the state.

It is not surprising because some people within Enugu East Senatorial zone, especially those from Nkanu East and West Council areas see themselves as superior and savvy than others, especially those from Isi Uzo LGA. This is quite unfortunate.

It is not surprising because Governor Ugwuanyi’s taciturnity and studied silence ahead of the party governorship primary in the state has created confusion and worry in the minds of those of them, who believed erroneously that power will be given to their favoured aspirant on the platter of gold. It seems that it has dawned on them that every governorship aspirant is on his own.

It is quite unfortunate and disappointing that instead of some of the PDP governorship aspirants especially from the so-called core Nkanu land to be taking their consultations to the length and breadth of the state to solicit for support and market their candidacies, they are busy sponsoring social media fairy tales and lies against Governor Ugwuanyi and the people of Enugu North Senatorial zone.

Back to Edeoga’s entrance into the governorship race and his soaring popularity that has become a source of worry to other aspirants and people, especially from the so- called core Nkanu land, which comprise of Nkanu East and Nkanu West local government areas, just two out of the six local  government area that make up Enugu East Senatorial zone, Edeoga is from Isi Uzo LGA in Enugu East Senatorial zone and is overqualified to contest the governorship election just like other aspirants from the zone. This is especially as the zoning of governorship in the state favours their Senatorial zone to produce Governor Ugwuanyi’s successor in 2023.

The rotation of governorship seat in Enugu state that has engendered peace, equity and fairness was on the basis of tripod arrangement of the constitutionally recognized three Senatorial zones in the state namely- Enugu East, Enugu West and Enugu North. It was never arranged or upheld on the basis of cultural bloc or group or affiliation as being ignorantly and mischievously peddled by the writer in his article to arrive at predetermined destination.

When Isi Uzo LGA was gerrymandered into Enugu East Senatorial zone in 1996 from Enugu North Senatorial zone by some privileged personalities mainly from Enugu East zone just to reduce the huge population of the people of Enugu North Senatorial zone and deal with them politically, didn’t they envisage equality of all the council areas in the Senatorial zone or that what is good for goose is also good for the ganders?

Haven’t the people of the so-called core Nkanu benefitted from Isi Uzo politically since 1996 till date? What has the Nkanu people left for or gave to Isi Uzo LGA people politically and otherwise in the spirit of brotherhood since 1996 till date? Why the phobia and stereotype against Isi-uzo people in Enugu East Senatorial zone by the so-called core Nkanu people and Senator Chimaroke Nnamani’s renegades? What is the voting strength of the so-called core Nkanu people that made them think that they are so indispensable in the politics and voting in the Enugu East Senatorial zone?

Besides, there is nothing like core Nkanu land in the Nigerian constitution. It is non-existent. We know about Nkanu East and Nkanu West Local government areas that is in Enugu East Senatorial zone.

Assuming without conceding that Barr. Edeoga is a relation of Gov. Ugwuanyi, how does such disqualify Edeoga constitutionally from contesting governorship election? In Abia state, former Governor of the State, Chief Theodore Orji is presently the Senator representing Abia Central zone.

His first biological son, Hon. Engr. Chinedum Orji, a ranking member of the State House of Assembly, is the current Speaker of the House. What is this hullabaloo about Bar. Edeoga being a relation of Gov. Ugwuanyi? Is Barr. Edeoga not from Isi Uzo LGA? Is Isi Uzo LGA not in Enugu East Senatorial zone? Is it not the turn of Enugu East Senatorial zone to produce Governor in 2023 in line with the conventional rotation of governorship seat in Enugu state since 1999? Answers to the above questions are in affirmative. So, why these lies about Gov. Ugwuanyi and Barr. Edeoga?

Instead of dissipating energy in maligning Barr. Edeoga whose campaign has gained mileage and traction ahead of the primaries, other aspirants especially from Nkanu East and West Council areas should intensify their campaigns and consultations across the length and breadth of the state to woo the stakeholders and delegates.

As it is, it seems Gov. Ugwuanyi as a true democrat may not anoint anyone as his successor. The choice will be made by Enugu delegates at the primaries. The matter may be settled in the field. Those who have waited for Ugwuanyi’s anointing or endorsement may be disappointed at the end of the day.

As the delegates and the rest of Enugu people have always insisted that there is zoning of governorship seat in the state, let them pronounce or reaffirm it with their votes during the primaries.

Gov. Ugwuanyi we know is not perturbed or moved by this kind of cheap media blackmail as executed by the so called Godwin Udeh. Udeh’s article is that of hands of Esau and voice of Jacob. More of such baseless, spurious and sponsored articles will be peddled on social media platforms before, during and after the primaries and general elections.

Bad and serial losers in any contest will always have something to say to discredit the process and justify his or her loss or defeat.

This is normal and expected in every election. What we are seeing in Enugu is a case of the oppressor crying for being checkmated from years of enslaving others.

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Politics

ENUGU 2023 GUBER: WHY WON’T EKWEREMADU COMPLAIN

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By Chimdi Maduka

Hmmm I was surprised reading a news story where Awgu LGA Chairman, Hon. Okwudili Pedro was asking why is it that Senator Ike Ekweremadu is the only governorship aspirant complaining and at the same time crying over the just concluded transparent and smooth PDP three-man delegate Congress in Enugu State.

My feeling emanated from the fact that everyone in Enugu including Awgu LGA Chairman, political observers and PDP faithful should have known why Ekweremadu is the only aspirant complaining.

It is just like asking why is that Ekweremadu is the only major political from Enugu West Senatorial zone that bought PDP governorship form against the conventional rotation of governorship seat in the state that favours Enugu East Senatorial zone in 2023. So why won’t Ekweremadu cry when he has been stripped naked politically, even more than the physical beating he received in Germany years ago.

Ekweremadu complains because he lacks political sagacity to understand the arithmetic of politics. If not, why should he embark on a political voyage he knew will be dead on arrival. Is he a political neophyte or a desperado?

Ekweremadu is complaining because the PDP moving train in Enugu has left him and his retinue of brainwashed social media bandits behind, even before the primary election.

Without mincing words or being pretentious, the Enugu PDP members including Ekweremadu’s one time loyalists have through their choice of delegates during the party’s Congress shown Ekweremadu where they stand as loyal party members.

So it is not surprising that Ekweremadu is complaining. He complains because he does not know what to tell his featherweight followers and social media marionets that are already calling him Incoming, His Excellency and other borrowed names.

Ekweremadu is complaining, because he failed to understand that there is a clear difference between PDP of today and that of 2015. Ekweremadu complains because the slogan Ike Is Coming has suddenly turned to Ike Is Going Home even before the governorship primary in the state. Ike is now the Biblical Aaron. Why won’t Ekweremadu complain when all his machinations to discredit the outcome of the transparent delegate Congress in the state have failed him?

Ekweremadu is complaining, because he underrated Governor Ugwuanyi’s capacity and the unalloyed support and tremendous goodwill he is enjoying as the leader of the PDP in the state and Southeast region at his own peril.

Ekweremadu is complaining, because he is the architect of his problem. So, weep not for Ekweremadu because he is a little bird that overfeed himself and decided to engage his god in a wrestling bout. Why pitying him?

Why won’t Ekweremadu cry or complain when he has even been rejected, mocked and abandoned by his own people, the delegates from his Enugu West Senatorial zone, who were in Government House recently to pledge loyalty to Governor Ugwuanyi ahead of the 2023 party primaries.

The statutory and ad hoc delegates from Enugu West Senatorial District, who rose with one voice, assured Governor Ugwuanyi that they are solidly behind him, and will vote according to his direction in the selection of PDP candidates for the 2023 general elections in the state.

The delegates, who gave the assurance when they paid a solidarity visit to Gov. Ugwuanyi at the Government House, Enugu recently, applauded the governor for entrenching peace and good governance in Enugu State.

They also commended Gov. Ugwuanyi for the peaceful conduct of the ward congress of the PDP across the 260 electoral wards of Enugu State, on April 30, 2022, stressing that the outcome of the exercise was an eloquent testimony that the governor is “a leader of peace”.

The delegates from the five local government areas of Enugu West Senatorial District comprising Aninri, Awgu, Ezeagu, Oji River and Udi, told the governor that they have never taken, and will not take, his peaceful disposition and uncommon leadership qualities for granted.

They expressed delight that Enugu State is a reference point for peace in Nigeria, pointing out the cherished feat was made possible because of the governor’s commitment to peace, security and wellbeing of residents of the state.

Speaking on behalf of the delegates, the Chairman of Ezeagu LGA and State Deputy Chairman, Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON), Hon. Chukwudi Ozoeluba, said: “We assure you (Ugwuanyi) that we the delegates are for you and wherever you say we should go, we will go with you. Other decisions you will take, we will stand with you. In any condition we are with you”.

Flanked by the other four council chairmen from Enugu West Senatorial District, Hon. Ozoeluba added: “We equally to thank you for the peace you have given Enugu State. We have never seen a peaceful three-man delegate election in Enugu State like this one of April 30, 2022.

“This shows that you are a father and a leader of peace. And that peace you have given Enugu State has made our state one of the best states in Nigeria. Thank you for making it possible”.

In his remarks, the pioneer State Chairman of the PDP, Dr. Charles Egumgbe, also described Gov. Ugwuanyi as “a man of peace and tranquility”, deserving of the unalloyed support and solidarity of the people of Enugu West Senatorial District and beyond, as the Governor of Enugu State and leader of the PDP in the state.

According to him, “The issue of leadership is not changeable and PDP has established that precedence as a party. I commend you (Ugwuanyi) for the peaceful ward congress of our great party last weekend. It was tranquil in my ward and I know it was tranquil everywhere.

 “We are a family and we have a leader in the person of Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi. As a political party, let us continue to follow our leader, he is leading us alright”.

Now that Ekweremadu has been rejected politically by his own people of Enugu West Senatorial zone ahead of the primaries, will Ekweremadu still go ahead to contest the governorship primary? Common sense, though not common demands that it is time for Ekweremadu to seek for atonement having failed and lied against the Enugu founding fathers, PDP leaders and members in the state on rotation of governorship seat, just because of his selfish and inordinate ambition.

Ekweremadu can now see that monkey is smart is because trees near each other. Now that monkey has found himself in the desert, is he not helpless?

It is obvious that whatever is happening to Ekweremadu politically ahead of 2023 general elections was brought unto him by himself. He has nobody to blame for his political woes except himself and his band of social media noisemakers and bootlickers, who saw a window of opportunity to get their own share of the people’s collective patrimony Ekweremadu has cornered for almost two decades. 

Ekweremadu will soon move from being a political complaint to a political weeping child and retired politician. It is just a matter of time. Ekweremadu would have saved himself all these stress and humiliations if he listened to the voice of reason and had toed the path of honour.

As it is now, it is late for Ekweremadu to redeem and rescue himself politically. He has been decimated and humiliated already. He is on the verge of going into political hibernation and possibly extinction if he is not careful.

Maduka, a lawyer writes from Mgbowo, Awgu LGA, Enugu State

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