APC: Take a Chance on Okorocha

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All Progressive Congress (APC) has come to stay.  The PDP government
through the years has been
harsher, less productive, more corrosive to national health and more divisive
than colonial rule. The party has ran the country aground. The party has
made a
country which stands logic on it head, a land where glittering externalities
subvert genuine probing.  Agreed that
President Goodluck Jonathan inherited a poisoned chalice, but he has done
little to better the condition of the common man. We are just stuck in the
morass of economic quagmire like a pin in a groove. PDP is full of men of
cavalier superficiality. Under PDP, Nigeria has become a nightmare from which
we are trying to wake. The party should bury its head in shame at a post
colonial state gone completely berserk under its watch. So, the advent of APC
is a welcome relief.
 APC will stop the
nation from passing into the mausoleum of failed states. And the man with the
capacity to do the job is Rochas Okorocha. The current political
favours him. He will be widely accepted in every geo-political zone. It
will be
a thing of beauty if APC picks him as its presidential candidate. It will
surely be an easy ride to victory. Okorocha is a committed humanist,
orator and
an indomitable fighter for freedom. He has a visceral love for his fellow
He believes that the problems of Nigeria can be solved through pacific social
engineering.  He has remained unrelenting
and relentless in the pursuit of truth.
 This amiable governor
of Imo State has a mystical faith in the destiny of Nigeria. He is simply the
best man for the job. Okorocha believes so much in the words of Thomas
Jefferson contained in the American declaration of Independence. The document
has a ringing truth about Nigeria today as it did for the United States when
that country declared its independence form the British colonial masters in
1776. “we hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created
that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that
among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure
these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just power
from the consent of the governed.â€
When Owelle, Rochas Okorocha declared his intention to run
for the governorship of Imo State, I was enthused.  That was a shared
feeling in the state and it
generated a gush of optimism. He is a man of the people and a
revolutionary. So
it didn’t come to me as a shock when he dispatched Ohakim
unceremoniously into
political oblivion.  From my observation,
neither financial gain nor the pump and trappings of power are of interest to
him.  He loves his people. He loves
humanity. Above all, he loves God. I knew that God was going to offer him a
higher platform in the service of mankind.Â
  A visit in Imo state
will convince anybody that Owelle is working. This man with a holy passion
been able to inspire his people, energized the lethargic, widen the
horizon of
their ambitions and put them on the fast track to development. The moral
revolution in Imo state is such that people are no longer talking about
tricksters and fraudulent characters but about a man who has publically
displayed his love for God. He started his inauguration with singing unto the
Lord and surely God is helping him. This is a significant signal.  Again
godfatherism, which has always been a
milestone around the states’ neck, is now a thing of the past.
  The striking thing
about him is the presence of ideological motivation. He believes that
rationality, intelligence, hard work and persistence can solve any problem.
After reading his interview in the Sun Newspaper edition of July 21, 2012, I
came away with the conviction that Owelle has practical sense as well as a
capacity to understand the problem of the state.    Okorocha has tagged
his economic theory for
the state ‘Rochanomics’. According to him, it is tailored towards
The one that is of particular interest to me is his palm programme. He said,
“The programme makes it compulsory for everybody including a month baby
to have
a palm tree in his domain, otherwise he will not be counted as citizen of the
state. The revenue from palm oil is more than what comes from crude oil.
Malaysia took their palm seedling from here and became what they are
This is a shining light of sweet reason.  It is interesting to note that
Malaysia earns
billions of dollars from the palm oil industry.
Under his watch, an impoverished state like Imo state is now
experiencing pride and joy that has been denied it for years. The
situation in
Imo State before Okorocha came into office was, in short, envenomed by
neglect.  Now roads are being tarred in the rural
areas and hospitals and schools are being built. His programmes are getting
people involved in governance.  In the area
of education he has done well.  According
to him, “No child of Imo origin is allowed to pay N1 for anything. So
there is collective
ownership of children now. What that means is that if you go out and see your
child, I have a responsibility towards him. I want Imo to take pride of
as the best centre for education. This is what I want to record for
We have an influx of over 40,000 to 50, 000 people coming back from other
states and it is increasing every day. Even none Igbo’s are bringing their
children for education. Now we have established free education, to the extent
that we are paying bursary of N300 for primary school pupils, N500 for every
secondary school every quarter. And we will provide free uniforms to all the
children. Free lockers, free stockings, free shirts, trousers, sandals,
school bags, desks.â€
Okorocha has demonstrated that by serving the people, you
strengthen the fabrics of our collective humanity. We need great leaders
because about half the world’s population still lives on less than $2 a
Bill Clinton said that the modern world for all its blessings is unequal,
unstable and unsustainable. And so the great mission of this century is to
our neighbourhood, our nation and world toward integrated communities of
opportunities, shared responsibilities and shared sense of genuine belonging.
There is plenty of evidence that more effective government can produce higher
incomes, better living conditions and more social justice.
APC should not allow this moment to pass it by.  Once this great party
nominates Okorocha, the
rest is history.  One fascinating fact
about Okrocha is that he is amazingly knowledgeable about the problems this
country and intensely committed to making a difference. He will brought
intelligence and intensity and a business like insistence on results.Â
Okorocha as a president will make Nigeria a
better place.
Ikechukwu Orji,
A journalist and media consultant lives in Lagos.

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