Governor of Abia State, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, has taken a hard look at his more than seven years in office and concluded that he has done his best in changing the trajectory of the state.
Speaking in an interview with the managing director/editor-in-chief, Onuoha Ukeh; editor, Daily Sun, Iheanach Nwosu, and the state correspondent, Okey Sampson, the Abia State governor, who turns 58 tomorrow, said he has succeeded in laying a solid foundation on which further transformation would evolve in the state.
Revealing how he has succeeded in establishing masterplans for Aba, Umuahia and Ohafia in the state, as well as other achievements, Ikpeazu said Abia State was in a position to attain its full potential.
He, however, expressed regrets that, despite his modest achievements in office, the opposition has not been fair to him.
Ikpeazu said that the consolation was that history would remember the things he did in office, as they are well documented.
Ikpeazu also spoke on the happenings in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), outlining why he and four other governors were insisting that things should be done properly, among other things.
How would you assess your tour of duty?
The journey to this point hasn’t been very easy, but I thank God. He gave me the strength and resilience to continue to move on and the manifestation of our burning of the midnight oil has begun to show.
Abia State, in terms of resources, is blessed with great people, very honest and hardworking people. The things that our people need to eke out a living for themselves are few, as it were, and we have dedicated all our time this past seven years to create a platform that will enable our people to blossom to their full potential.
I want to say also that the days ahead will be better because we’ve laid very strong foundations for an economically strong, viable and sustainable state. I could say, if I want to be immodest, that some of the steps we have taken are irreversible. I say this because Aba, Umuahia and Ohafia had no masterplan when I came in. But today we are in collaboration with UN-Habitat to develop a master plan for these three cities and indeed we were commended last week through a letter from UN-Habitat for our vision towards ensuring that we bring about structured and organized development for our major cities, and they adjudged these cities as among of the contending cities for most resilient cities in Africa.
Beyond that, Abia had no industrial policy and, when you talk about job creation, you are speaking to industrialization, and if you are talking about industrialization, you must formalize the pattern, you must provide the compass for that process to happen. Here again, for the first time, we have delivered, collaborating with UNIDO, the first industrial policy for Abia State. This government is also bequeathing, for the first time, a long-term development plan, the 30-year plan for the development of Abia State, which, by my calculation, will serve as a compass to guide successive leaders to continue to move in a progressive manner so that we can achieve our goal.
Could you tell us about the Enyimba Economic City (EEC)?
It is part of the critical elements of our development plan. Incidentally, like all transgenerational projects, EEC is something you may not see today. But we are planning a summit in that regard on my birthday, where we intend to talk to our people about how far we’ve gone and the things we have done so far and the promise it holds, provision of 600,000 jobs in the next 20 to 30 years for our people is the clincher. That’s the only way we can ensure that, going forward (in spite of) insecurity, unemployment, economic downturn, (it) will create sufficient buffer to lift our people because, for the first time, through EEC, the Igbo man is going to have a platform from where he manufactures and exports without going to Lagos or anywhere else.
This is what is missing and it has discouraged our people. If you go to the entire South West, its economy is propelled by the hard work and drive of our people. And here, we are saying, how can it be that we have a rail line connecting our state through to Kano from Port Harcourt? Indeed this rail line starts from Abonema Wharf and there’s the Onne Wharf. So, its an irony that we can’t create an economic city that can leverage that existing rail lines for the distribution of goods.
Onne and Abonema wharfs are less than 30 minutes from the location where Enyimba Economic City is being sited; so, we can leverage the proximity of those seaports. Akwa Ibom is looking at Ibom deep seaport, which is about 40 minutes from EEC. So, the only way to think futuristically is to create an economic city and we gave 9,300 hectres of land between Aba and Port Harcourt. Technically, we want to close the economic (gap between) Aba and Port Harcourt so there won’t be any difference. And we have gotten to the point that we are looking at financial closure before the end of this year, which is driven by Afrexim bank.
To do the plan alone, the same people that designed Dubai and Singapore took a million dollars to design EEC. It is the most irresistible project that has come from Nigeria. I’ve been to South Africa, I’ve been to New York, I’ve been to Egypt many times, I have been everywhere, and each place I go, people always welcome it. It is the most viable export free zone from Nigeria. In fact, it is the hope of Nigeria to participate in the Continental Treaty Agreement.
Today, we have received approval from the Federal Executive Council concessioning the A4 Road between Aba and Port Harcourt-Enugu to EEC. We have contractors that are ready to do that road; so, it is no longer in the hands of the Federal Government. And just the other day, somebody posted to me the official number plate by Road Safety. So, some of the vehicles of our businessmen who will do business here will bear EEC. We are looking forward to when, before the exit of this administation, we will do ground-breaking and then construction will effectively take off. But, before that, so many tenants have indicated interest that they want to build health city, an education city, wharehousing and logistics in EEC. I participated in all the meetings.
What I see of this environment tomorrow will change most of the states in the South East and South South; what I see will repatriate effectively the efforts, sweat and hard work and wealth of our people. I am happy that I am associated with it. Life-changing projects are usually not quick fixes, but every leader must dredge up sufficient courage to see this kind of long-term vision, invest in it, embark on it and then ensure that you push it forward, even when you are no longer governor, for the benefit of our children. If we don’t succeed with EEC, we will be running round in circles. It’s unfortunate, but that’s the truth.
Because population is growing geometrically, the only way we can stop the slide in our economy is to make sure that we do that economic city so that we can provide jobs quickly and suck up the various capacities and energies of the young ones we have, almost about a million, people involved in garments and leatherwork here. If you calculate 250,000 people in Ariaria, Ahia Ohu (New Market), Shopping Centre, Ngwa Road axis and then multiply it by four, four apprentices, this is nearly four million people. And these are hardworking people. You don’t even see them. They don’t have time for crime because some of them will be sewing shirts from morning till night, all through, their wife will just give them food right there in their shops. They sleep there to continue the following morning, especially as December is approaching.
I’m happy and excited that this has happened; let me pledge that I feel encouraged. Our foot is already on the throttle and we will fire on until the end of our time here and, God blessing us, we will be able to also hand over to somebody who can continue along this trajectory for the benefit of our people.
The problem we have in this part of the world is continuity. What have you put on ground to ensure the person who will succeed you will complete Enyimba Economic City?
The leadership recruitment process is a very big problem; it’s part of the problems we have because our leaders are very emotional; they respond to impulses that are not deep-rooted, impulses that are personal, that have no connection with the needs of the people. So, when they react to all those, they miss the mark. The second reason is that you see how long it took us in Abia to think of a long-term development plan. I have spoken the way I did because I am speaking to people like you who understand. It is better for me to campaign with the newly completed Azikiwe Road, than to campaign with a long-term development plan, whereas, the long-term development plan is the software that drives development.
But the Aba man will be happy that I did Azikiwe Road. In other places, a leader can just come and say, ‘I gave you long-term development plan, for that, vote for me,’ and they will see him as somebody who has achieved something. What I’m coming to is the fact that some of us who push towards having a hand in who succeeds us have a good reason. For me today, my confidence in pushing for a successor is that I will hand over this long-term development plan to the successor and I will extract an agreement with him that he will flip through and read it and push it and develop Abia along that trajectory.
If I succeed in doing that, I don’t need any other thing. But, otherwise, somebody in my position could be looking for a successor because he wants somebody to cover his back, he wants somebody to do this or that for him. You know, reasons that are not tied to creating a better life for our people. These are the two major reasons. Every leader should have his reason dovetailing from what he thinks is good for the people.
Beyond that, there are a few things that I have earned as governor. One of them is that Abia is one of the few states where there is no problem between successor and predecessor and we have managed our relationship. This is not to say we don’t disagree, even husband and wife disagree. We are in a place where, whatever thing it is, we find a way to resolve it because we create our red lines and we create our green lines and we do not go beyond none of that.
I have also lately extended it to all my predecessors. I call them on phone and they come to see me and I go to see them and all of that. So, I have earned that. I will expect my successor to also carry on along that line and not to destabilize the political environment. I inherited a few projects from my predecessor: the International Conference Centre, and I completed it; ASUBEB building, and I completed it; JAMB building, and I have paid all the money that is required to complete it; I inherited a new Government House, I am working hard, I am believing God that I will also complete it. I can tell you that, around January, February, in fact, my pledge to Ndi Abia is that I will sleep there.
Like I said before, this EEC project, we have no option in the matter. In the first place, why did I bothered to send 30 young people to China to go and learn how to use machines to make shoes? Because I know this is where I met my children, using hand to cut leather. As the chief marketer of ‘Made in Aba’, I could not speak to consistency in quality, I could not speak to speed, I could not even speak to how long it would take to provide 1,000 pairs of shoes. How do I solve the problem, should I leave them in the 21st Century using their hand to cut leather, using hurricane stove to warm leather? I said, No, the best thing for me to do for them is to introduce them to the way it is done now and so we have elevated our standard, our processes and procedures for shoe manufacturing.
If we don’t talk about EEC and push it, even in the next administation, how will the incoming administration provide 600,000 jobs that will be able to match and outspace the population explosion that is imminent? This population will effectively double in the next 15 to 20 years. This is why I said it is existential and it is contending that as part of our trajectory for development in the next 30 years. It is also going to be contained in my handover note, but the most impetus that is driving the EEC is beyond one man, because I was able to get the House of Assembly to give me a law that gives EEC some quasi-autonomy; its like a small state in a state; it’s like Vatican in Rome. They have all their things. It’s not a place where a local government chairman will come in and begin to give orders. It’s a prerequisite, otherwise you won’t have the foreign investors to come. That’s why I go everywhere with them and I usually deliver the lead speech. I make sure that part of what I must say within the first five sentences is that there’s a law establishing it, that puts it beyond my own control. Unless they are doing something that is undermining the peace, security and stability of my state, otherwise, they are in a place where nobody can take control over them. The private sector entity that is pushing EEC has sufficient muscle to push it through, irrespective of the reluctance or whatever the man who is coming will think. These are the three double-locks that I think will make it a project that will remain on the front burner.
Your passion for the EEC is very infectious, but there is the problem of insecurity. How do you plan to get around it?
Let me start by saying that I’m a firm believer that security is of the Lord, but South East has been described as safer than most regions, irrespective of what anybody wants to say. Even within South East, they have regarded Abia as an oasis in the desert. I’m careful about choosing my words, especially to avoid me appropriating the glory that should go to God. But let me say we understand our security challenges and we read it well. However, because we don’t have sufficient control, like many other states, we are constrained to make all kinds of makeshift arrangements. We understand what the security situations are and we can protect not only Abia State but also EEC. The security challenge is germane. It’s a concern for Nigeria. In Abia, we have a way of tracking what is happening in our various communities and we understand what is happening; we follow up and deal with it. And we have had an average of about 65-70 per cent chances, if you commit violent crime here, you will be caught, if it is not that day, a week after.
We have profiled most of our criminals; we have a digital data of some of the people we are looking for. If something happens, we know one or two or three people we will query first. This is saying there is room for improvement, we can do better and I expect whosoever coming to improve on what we have done so far.
When they mention your name, people don’t really believe you have achieved much in office. Would you say that people play down on your achievements?
That’s true. People don’t really want to acknowledge it. People don’t want to even give me credit for what I have done.
Partially, it is my fault. I am a teacher and, if you are a university lecturer, your only duty is to teach, research and write papers and publish them. You don’t need to tell anybody when you are writing; when it is time for promotion, all you need to do is to forward your papers. The assessment will be made without you lobbying or promoting yourself. That’s my background. When I came, I had two issues. The first one, there was much to be done and I needed to roll up my sleeves and I began to work immediately. At first, I needed to keep my vision clear and steady, find a way to pursue this vision in the midst of a badly corrupt and reluctant civil service. At that time, I had 13 court cases; some of my detractors and some of my political enemies thought that Abia was their birthright. They had access to social media; they also had access to regular media. So, they were spending huge sums of money every month on propaganda: once Ikpeazu or Abia’s name comes up, they attack it, and it continuesd. I didn’t want to bother myself with them.
However, I quickly ran to my people here; my style has a way of appealing to my people. There is no inch of road today in Aba that you put your tyre that doesn’t have my signature, from Park Road to East Street, everywhere. In fact, at a point, the ordinary problem of water took 10 palliative interventions, and you couldn’t solve it. That’s why, today, if you ask me my greatest achievement in road construction, I will not mention it in terms of the number of roads or kilometres, I will say, ‘I started rigid pavement before others did it.’ And it has caught on to the point that, some weeks ago, a church invited me to inaugurate a road they did through self-effort and it was rigid pavement and they said the reason was because I taught them.
The hallmark of leadership is to be able to innoculate those that are following you. I’m known in this country for putting a pocket square in my pocket; go and see how many people in Abia are today putting pocket squares. For 60 years, nobody did road around Ngwa Road axis, but I have done six roads there. The people were forgotten; the last time I went there, young people in this Aba removed their trousers and came out naked. If Aba people want to celebrate you, at times they do that kind of thing. The time Enyimba FC won CAF, we saw many naked boys on the streets here. If they do it, what they’re saying is, ‘See, we’ve given you our life’.
I monitor projects. At times, I leave here (Governor’s Lodge, Aba) by 11pm, 12 midnight and go and stand alone on the streets and I talk to everybody. Remember, we have gone through Operation Python Dance here, they thought heaven would fall, but it didn’t consume us. People planned at that time to burn Ariaria (International Market), but it didn’t work. We’ve gone through #EndSARS, our own was not as bad as other places. At some point, we had to come out and say to them, ‘Please let us not do this, nobody will help us’. At that time, I was beginning to look at what N50 million would do for me, because a tonne of asphalt at that time was about N26m to N30m, but now its about N72m. So, I had a bill of N100m, I would be looking at asphalting three kilometres of road. But it didn’t pay me well as an individual. Today, let me challenge you people, please, ask my people to give you my inaugural speech and then give you my list of achievements. I have checked almost all the boxes, because I have my inaugural speech off hand. I can re-write it. I have checked all the boxes, but that is not even the strength of what we are doing. The strength of what we are doing is that there’s a complete integration in our interventions.
Could you tell us other things you have done?
When I want to talk about what I did in health, I come off with a narrative and say, my vision, my philosophy, is to make sure that life expectancy in Abia, is higher than national average. Because if you have a philosophy, you can develop a strategy to pursue that. What will be your strategy, capture the vulnerable extremes, mother and child and then old people? So, that’s why I have a generic outreach for people that are 70 years and above. When I am doing it, I am doing it they must be well, they are vulnerable; if they are stable, life expectancy will increase, if young people and their mothers don’t die, life expectancy will increase. But in-between them, middle aged people can come down with radiovascular accident, road traffic accidents, so, I had to put ambulances in the highway, I had to set up emergency healthcare for people with those ambulances. The three critical points, middle age, old people, mother and child, I have captured them, that’s my strategy. And to collect all of them because I know medical facilities and expertise will not be available at the same time in all the places, so, I set up the Abia tele-health initiative where 15 doctors are on call everyday.
What I have done is to ensure the availability of those 15 doctors even to the primary healthcare centres wherever they may be
By December, we are rolling out brand new mobile clinic for surgery, mobile theatre, mobile maternity and mobile laboratory. The idea is that if we know where we have very few secondary healthcare centres, many primary healthcare centres, those vehicles will go in a convoy to outreach in those places, do laboratory, do surgery. I try to integrate the things I am doing and its usually evidenced base, we do studies here, we couldn’t have solved our road problem if we didn’t do rigid pavement.
In SME, we created SME bank because we needed an adapter between what Federal Government is doing in terms of funding and then a platform for sustainable lending to the SMEs because I don’t want government to be touching money to be giving people, let there be a structured thing because beyond giving them money, there are other things which their interface in that bank will let us know.
Then automation and capacity building, I needed to speak on their behalf, I went to China and then I brought the machines. And then, we are pushing forward with the marketing. I have done Trade Fair, taking them to everywhere, Abuja, Egypt, even New York; ordinary shoe maker! So, when you are writing and you are not acknowledging what we are doing, the shoe maker will say ‘this man is the man I know, who gave me my first International passport, paid my air fare to China, I wouldn’t have been able to go to China’. How can you tell him or his mother that Ikpeazu is not doing anything?
Let’s talk politics. Presently in PDP, we have some shockwaves and what is referred to as G5. What is really going on in your political party?
I will use an analogy to answer this question, or let me say narrative rather. Our party has gone through several stages of development. In 2015, some people were aggrieved and they moved out of the party because according to them, (President Goodluck) Jonathan didn’t keep his agreement with them; they moved away and then Jonathan lost that election and then we now went into the trenches. But the people in this G5 and others remained in this party and started rebuilding it and we said to ourselves, we must rebuild our party based on a few cardinal principles that are already in the Constitution of the party because the greatest challenge of Nigeria is not even about a new Constitution but implementation by default. We said that going forward our political party will be built on integrity, transparency, inclusiveness, sensitivity to religion, gender and what have you, that we must carry everybody along.
We said the since Nigerians rejected us because of a few things, the way to change these things is to do a total rebirth from within the party. That is why between that time and now, we’ve been able to change many national chairmen. So, what you see today is what we thought was our new PDP, that will be sensitive to the diversity of this country. But it has become more critical and more mportant than anything because of the things that confront us in this country today, mainly economic issues, security and then nationhood, cohesiveness. Of all of them, the most important ingredient, one that you must put in the soup first before anything happens, is our ability to build a nation. We have a country, we don’t have a nation anymore. As it is today, because we are completely divided along all lines, if you say tighten your belts, some will tighten, some will not. If you say ‘anything you see anywhere say it’, some people will say, ‘if it is my brother, I will not say it, but if it is your brother, I will say it’. We are divided along religious and ethnic lines and all of that; we said we must show more than an average commitment towards responding to the diversity of this country, to make sure that we present a party that will look like a truly pan-Nigerian party, where the youth, the women and all parts of Nigeria is included.
Before the primary election, we went back and forward, back and forward and we said zoning, which is in our party; later it was thrown open. Some of us at that time said this was going to be dangerous because in my Igbo parlance, ‘Oke ruem n’aka, asi k’ekegharia ya’ (why is that whenever it is my turn, a new sharing formula will emerge)?. But we said okay because we needed to rescue Nigeria we allowed that. But then, a few understanding was reached, part of it was, if we have a chairman from a certain section of the country, will it be good for us to also push a presidential candidate from that same part of the country? And then answer was well, if that happens, we will make the adjustments. The first thing again was, won’t jettisoning zoning be dangerous? Now again, what are we going to do if this is the scenario? We said we are going to adjust. Now, some of us are saying, adjust and they are saying no, we won’t adjust now. That is the matter.
Well, the good thing is that we are making these points within the party. As an individual, I am particularly worried that some of our people have not demonstrated sufficient maturity, because these are issues we usually, ordinarily discuss. Once you come to the market place and you talk about your family issues, commentators will pass judgments here and there and will instigate up and down that things are happening. And that is why it seems as if it is a big deal. But because as an Igbo man, and in my position as a two term governor, I am in a place where if I will not make heaven, let the reason not be that I didn’t speak the truth. At this level, if I shy away from speaking the truth, then, I am not the son of my father. Irrespective of the fact that I come off with very simple, unassuming demeanor, there’s steel inside me and I prefer to exhibit it when I want to exhibit it.
I have spoken about national outlook. As an Igbo man, the vehicle is ready; we are traveling, but I want to know the destination, so that when I tell Ndigbo the way they will listen to me to board this vehicle, it will be because I know the destination. Again, the other analogy and that’s where I will end on this matter is that the G5 is saying that this vehicle that is taking us to Lagos has no spare tyre; let us put the spare tyre, but some passengers are saying, let us go like that. If we eventually board the vehicle like that and start going without spare tyre, when anything happens to us around Enugu on our way to Lagos, it will not be as if nobody said for once that this vehicle has no spare tyre. We are only saying, can we present a better party that looks like Nigeria where everybody will say we belong here, this is our party? Can we have the courage to do that? Because if you keep postponing the truth, what is all about? So, this is just what it is, but we are in PDP, we are talking and maybe we will just board the vehicle without the spare tyre.
With the way the G5 is doing, it appears to be on a retaliatory mission and that makes the whole thing a bit funny. People are beginning to wonder if you people only realised what Atiku did to Jonathan this time round, after supporting him in 2019. Peoplecate wondering if the G5 is really serious.
The answers are imbedded in your questions also. From what we have done, supporting them at that time and then allowing them to be part of us and building the party till this moment, means that we are not on a voyage for vendetta.
So, why are you raising it now?
What we are raising is that, how does it look if everybody that is important in the party comes from one part of the country? How does it look? How do I campaign here with that? Give me the campaign narrative. We are saying, compromise can be forced or that you can be blackmailed into a compromise and that is why Nigeria is where it is. Time has come if I am leading and there is something wrong with something, especially those things that touch on us, I should be able to do something to make it right. After the genocide experience in Rwanda, they have deleted place of birth, provence of origin, tribe and religion from their identity card. This is what we don’t have courage to do here. Okay, look at where Rwanda is after genocide how many years after and look at where we are. I don’t know what kind of people we are.
Like as I said before, this kite went and carried one chicken and the chicken started shouting and after a while, the chicken said this shout that I am shouting is not because this kite will leave me, but it is because I want heaven and earth to know that I have been carried by this kite. Because eventually, my grandchildren will ask me, ‘what did you say, what did you do at this time when you saw the picture was completely anti-South, I am talking. Having been there, I alluded to our effort in the tranches to hold the party until they came back and all of that.I alluded to it because I wanted you to see it from the angle that we have a new vision of a new party which is what is threatened; it is not position. We are saying that I am marketing this party to Nigerians. There are two classes of politicians in this land, the first group doesn’t care about what they market to Nigerians and what the outcome will be. But there’s another class where I belong that says before I put my integrity on the line, I must make sure that this person that I am pushing, that will be the next president, that he has to be somebody capable of doing 1,2,3,4,5 things, hold me responsible if he fails to do it.
We are not unmindful of the fact that Nigerians want us to quickly rally round so that we can push away this APC that has collapsed our country; we are not unmindful of that, but we are saying this vehicle that is going to Lagos, can we service it? It will be catastrophic if we remain in the tranche and go back to all those kind of things that have put us where we are today. Again also, the political space is in a state of flux; it has changed; it is no longer what it was at that time. People are not prepared to take everything. The dynamics of winning election, either for APC, for PDP or for wherever in Lagos has changed. The dynamics of campaigning in the South East, has changed also. So, I want to arm myself very well. I want to know how it is moving. I don’t even mind somebody telling me, ‘there is nothing anybody can do about it and tell me the thing in the room and then I will go and ask my people, ‘can we cope with this?’ Can I come home from the negotiation table and then tell my people, ‘nothing for you?, that I have broken the plate I have prepared to go and bring something for my people?
Telling us to enter the vehicle, no matter the destination, is a very dangerous. Let me ask: this thing that we are asking for, why is it so difficul for them to do? If we put it inside the scale, one must weigh more than the order. What is the place of ego in the whole of this? How can your ego be more important than the health, the image and the integrity of the party? How can? See, for every David you see, there was a Goliath he killed. Once a David fails to kill that Goliath, there’s then problem.
The G5 met recently in Enugu and there was this report that it was planning to support Peter Obi during the presidential election. Could this be true?
I haven’t seen that report.
But the news went viral that the G5 has decided to support Obi.
No, we never discussed Peter Obi in our meeting. Peter Obi is my brother and I’m proud of what he is doing and it will be a great disservice to his person and where he comes from, where both of us come from, for me to discuss him openly. How am l going to discuss Peter Obi openly, how proud can a man from his side be when you see your brother running 100 metres in less than seven seconds and you are discussing him?
We are only discussing our party, PDP, our Goliath, we must kill, our cross, we must carry. So, it’s not Peter Obi that put us where we are, it’s not Peter Obi that put us in trouble.
What is the place of the South East in the G5 agenda since the group is made up of governors from different zones?
This group is united by one vision and that vision is to present a party that has integrity, transparency, a party that is ethno-sensitive, a party that respects the youths, the women and the people of Nigeria, aparty that if they tell you to wait for something and you wait, if it comes to your turn, you get it. That is what has put us together. But speaking from the perspective of a South easterner, if we see this party and that becomes our party tomorrow, we see there’s sufficient balancing and everybody in the South and North are respected and whatever, the next thing will be, in forming government. The South easterners have been out of government for since forever and nobody can tell you it means nothing. Why is it that a 30 minutes journey from Aba to Port Harcourt will take more that three hours? Why is it that you cannot go to Akwa Ibom, unless you go through the road that we did, not federal road? Why there’s no part of Igbo land from where you can travel comfortably outside Nigeria without going to Kano, Lagos or Abuja? Despite the fact that 65 per cent of all the containers into Nigeria, end up in Aba and Onitsha, our people are not given their due respect. Customs people are storming various shops, searching people in the shop, after searching you at the wharf, 100 per cent examination, they do 200 per cent examination at the gate, they do 300 per cent at Ore, they do 400 per cent in the east; they will continue to do until the goods get to the final destination. Why is this? That is why at times, it will take three, four months to clear your goods from the wharf and another three, four months for the goods to move from Apapa to Oworonsoki on your way home, that is six months. If you had borrowed money from your bank, you will no longer be able to break even because it affects a particular set of people, which is because we are nowhere. That’s why it seems we can never be IGP, we can never be Chief of Army Staff, we can never be anything.
We are saying, can the party look like a pan-Nigerian party? If the party looks like a pan-Nigerian party, all of us will be wherever. I strongly believe that Wazirin Adamawa has the greatest opportunity, from the way I see it, to deal with the issues of this country,q judging from his experience, judging from his contacts, judging from whatever, but then, he has to kill the Goliath for him to be the David.