By Dr. Johnson Greg, in a letter to members of The Due Process Advocates International Foundation.
RELEVANCE OF TOPIC: In a country like Nigeria which has been bedevilled by serial failures of governance, it is of crucial importance to our members that we monitor closely the processes through which the leaders of this country emerge. Every mission we embark upon as a group will be hindered or advanced depending on the personalities that occupy government positions in Nigeria, especially the office of the President. Secondly, most calls for justice and equity in Nigeria relate to justice and equity among the ethnic groups in Nigeria. We must, therefore, watch the Nigerian political processes to assess the degree to which they promote justice and equity. Finally, each time I make a post on President Donald Trump or his rival, Joe Biden, some members complain bitterly that I left Nigeria and focused on America. To please those aggrieved members, let me focus on OUK’s presidential inclinations.
MAIN: Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but I can see an interesting strategic pattern to Orji Uzor Kalu’s political aspirations. His visit to Abia State this week was so brilliantly done. If you notice that every time his visit is mentioned in the press, there is always a reference to OUK’s time in prison. “Since he left Kuje Custodial Center” is always added to every caption. The reference to Kuje is an indisputable mark of victory and triumph. Deep down, it speaks of the man’s ability to overcome challenges. That was his trip home, which in the past would have been a routine event, has become a kind of triumphant entry.
In the Roman era, Army Generals would lead the great Roman legion into battles against foreign lands. A victorious General would return to Rome a hero of the Roman Empire. The whole of Rome would come out to welcome him. He would ride in an open Chariot through the streets of Rome and as he rode, he would acknowledge the admiration of the cheering citizens of Rome who would line the streets. If you look at the events, you will see in OUK’s visit to Abia every characteristic of a victorious Roman General riding in open Chariots in the streets of Rome. You may wonder, what battle or what war did OUK win that made him a hero deserving the cheers of the citizens of Abia and other Nigerians? His ability to defeat EFCC and all those political opponents alleged to have conspired to send him to prison was a great war. He won that war and the people are happy he did. He is their hero.
Also, notice the details of his movements. He could have landed straight in his compound with one of his private helicopters. But he landed in far away Owerri, knowing the dramatic effect of the crowd from a neighboring state trooping out to receive him and having thousands of people traveling back and forth between Abia and Imo State just to behold him. What does that tell you? It should tell you that OUK is a leader of consummate intellect. He has an uncanny connection with the people. He understands the importance of massive spectacle. His abilities in this regard as seen by what has been happening this week are comparable to the style of Julius Caesar and his huge spectacular shows in Rome. You may now understand why President Donald Trump was deeply disappointed when he went to Oklahoma expecting one million supporters but ended up with only six thousand.
If you are not familiar with the fundamental nature of politics, you will seat back and pontificate: “OUK is this, OUK is that”, reading straight from the propaganda books written by the EFCC. Then you will begin to say that this person or that person is less controversial and would make a better president. But that is naive. All over the world, controversial and daring leaders like OUK, not technocrats and professors, make presidents. OUK knows how to command the attention of millions of the ordinary people. That’s actually the key thing he needs to win elections. The same Abia people who filled the streets to cheer him, and people like them in other parts of the country, will vote for him when the time comes. That is the hardcore reality of the situation.
And note that OUK has not yet declared his interest and is not campaigning. He only went to visit his people. The way he is going, he will be a formidable presidential candidate. It is interesting to watch him. Even if you are an academic interested in social sciences, OUK is a figure to keep your eyes on. DPA members should study anybody that has the potential of becoming the future president of Nigeria, especially if the person can make it without us.
I encourage serious and constructive discussions about the candidacy of OUK as the next president of Nigeria. What do you see as his winning points? What do you see as obstacles? We are willing to have similar discussions on any other candidate when we can identify .