By Richard Romanus
Eko oni baje oo is a slang in Lagos state which simply means ‘Lagos will not spoil.’ For a typical Lagosian, on hearing this popular slang that has gradually metamorphos to a way of life in the commercial nerve centre of Nigeria, they is usually a response on the affirmative, ‘O baje ti’ which also means, Is hard to Spoil.’
Whoever may be the proponent, founder or originator of this slang, the fact remains that, in formulating it, the person thought about the dangers and repercussions of letting Lagos spoil,He thought about the beauty, economy, people, Government/politics, Nature among others and came to a conclusion that, No matter what happens, Eko, which means Lagos will not spoil and no matter what anybody does, it is hard to spoil Lagos. You will agree with me that, such a brand and thinking can only originate from a mind that is passionate in the development of Lagos better than it is.
Like Eko ni Baje, Like Think….Cross River. Though the former is a yoruba language while the later is English, both seem to be preaching the same message; putting the state first before self.
In state where politics has disunited it’s leaders morethan ever, where, politicians do the unthinkable just to score cheap political points, where people are more of KK, Aye, Mafia, viking among others than being Cross Riverians, where taking of one’s life is no longer considered sacred because,they do not belong to same fraternity,there is therefore an urgent need for a reorientation. A re orientation where, Cross Riverians will begin to realise that, we are first and foremost,brothers and Sisters by virtue of where we come from before being members of any political party, fraternity or religion.
Now is the time for our politicians to play politics without bitterness, a type of politics where, there is no Victor nor Vanquish. A politics where losers in every elections readily concede defeat for the State to move forward. A time where, criticisms of Government policies and programmes are based on real issues and not imaginary or non existing ones. A time where each and every Cross Riverian will realise that, whatever he/she does or says is capable of slowing down the wheels of development of the state hence the need to be cautious of whatever is said or done whether publicly or privately because at the end, it is the State and it’s people that will suffer.
Like Governor Ben Ayade once pointed out on Why Cross Riverians must continue to THINK CROSS RIVER, The state is one State reputed to be a very civilised state with handsome and beautiful people with good hearts. What is therefore needed is to think of what they can do for the State and not what the state can do for them. This is the new thinking the brand, THINK CROSS RIVER sakes to promote.
With a Governor who has shown so much zeal, determination, commitment and vigour to develop the state through the many deliberate programmes and policies he has floated ever since he was elected,all the people of the State owe him, is to key behind the think Cross River State initiative where each and every Cross Riverian will play active part towards helping him achieve the Cross River State of our dream.
Before I end this contribution, l like to use this opportunity to commend the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Communications and Branding, Sir Dorncklaimz Enahme for taking the THINK CROSS….RIVER initiative to an unimaginable height to the surprise of the Governor who never saw it coming inspite of being the major proponent of the initiative. DC is a man who parades morethan seven certificates including a Doctorate degree but still prefers to be known and address as DC, a truthful and sincere man who prefers to say the truth not minding whose oars is gored and a man whose antecedents right from his school days has learned to accept defeat and move on. For me, they can be no better person that would have promoted such a brand other than him. My wish is that, it grows morethan he and the Governor ever expected.
Cross River State is our project. We must make it work and it can only work if we THINK CROSS RIVER in all we say and do.
Richard Romanus is a public affairs commentator from Oderegha, Obubra LGA of Cross River State.