By Elem Kash
“Your Majesty, our constitution provides everything for the comfort and progress of our citizens but it is the citizens who must choose the people that will implement what the constitution has provided”, Abe said at Giokoo.
Giokoo holds some significance in Ogoni transitional history. Many remember the mob; the mob that descended on that community during the struggle against Shell and the Nigerian government.
On May 21st, 1994, the “Ogoni four”, four great sons of Gokana, were murdered in the community at the commencement of what has crystallized today into the Ogoni struggle.
The consequences of what transpired that day at Giokoo would lead to the judicial killing of the “Ogoni Nine”, which included Ken Sari Wiwa of blessed memory.
Abe who hails from Gokana; who had come home to meet the people; was standing on Giokoo soil, resolute and determined, his mind obviously on his mission. That was last Tuesday.
Students of literature may recall the words of Mark Anthony in Julius Caesar. “I have come to bury Caesar not to praise him.”
Abe, the gubernatorial aspirant of the APC, born in this era, conjured imageries of Mark Anthony’s exaltation to the Romans as he rolled out his tank:
“I am not here because I am from Ogoni, I am here because I am a Rivers son, I am here because I have the experience, I am here because I have served the people of this state in various capacities and offices and I have never been found wanting. I am here because I know what the people need.”
“I want to offer you the opportunity for you to take control of the government of Rivers State. I want to offer you the opportunity for you to take control of the destiny of your own sons and daughters.
“I want to offer you an opportunity for you to have a government that will serve you before it serves anyone else”, Abe told his audience.
“I have no godfather to report to”, he went on “what we have agreed today is between me and Rivers people. I promise you that if you give me the opportunity, I will stand by this contract to the very end.”On the march… Abe doing what he knows best – urging his supporters on at Bera.
Abe is a fighter and he hasn’t given up on his fight within the APC; his fight with Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, Minister of Transportation; after these years, not yet.
Rotimi Amaechi… Could he be the godfather that Abe does not have?
“Why did I come here today? Very simple. We all know that in the history and the make-up of our country, Nigeria, every four years, we have elections to choose those that will lead us and carry us until the next time we have choice to pick.
“At this time around, there are various offices that the Constitution provides and one of those offices is the Office of the Governor of Rivers State. The person that will superintend over the affairs of our state”, Abe said.
Rotimi Amaechi listens attentively as Magnus Abe makes a point in the good old days. Will both men ever reconcile?
“Your Majesty, people have said they have heard, I don’t want you to hear; I came to tell you by myself, that your son, Magnus Ngei Abe, I seek the office of the Governor of Rivers State”, the gubernatorial aspirant added.
Natural and paramount rulers of various Gokana Communities led by the Gbenemene of Gokana Kingdom, HRM King Festus Paago-Bagia, were on hand during the occasion.
On their part, acting in line with culture and tradition, the chiefs and elders of Gokana at Giokoo, unanimously endorsed the gubernatorial ambition of distinguished Senator Magnus Ngei Abe. And urged their son to ride on without fear.
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