By George Odok Jnr.
To say that Boki LGA is in trouble is an understatement. The local government have been divided along political lines by actors who have interest in presenting themselves for election come 2019.
To the electorates, 2019 is still far, but to the actors, 2019 is tomorrow, hence they must strive harder to win the hearts of the electorate by way of showing working.
Today, politicians from Boki, mainly from the PDP are working at cross-roads, one wonders if they have a unity of purpose to deliver votes for their party during the 2019 polls.
It is painful to know that Gov. Ben Ayade’s appointees who hails from this rich agricultural area have not been able to unite the area, two years after appointment; rather, they have further marginalised the area by mobilising and empowering their loyalists, who will in turn do their biding come 2019.
First, it was the case of the Boki oil palm estate, were lives and properties worth millions of Naira were destroyed. A peace committee was set up to arrest the situation and foster peace in the area, but painfully, this peace move did not work because the key actors were more interested in what was coming out from the estate rather than the entire peace of Boki.
During the struggle for who takes over the estate, we saw a parade of fire arms from rival groups, some of them turned into militia groups, all for the sake of the palm estate that has over 400 plots. The worst aspect of the struggle was that, all the loyalists were armed by their god-fathers.
The situation caused serious tension and panic in Boki land. Some community roads were no longer accessible because some youths were laying siege and waiting for their perceived enemies.
The estate saga has divided appointees in Ayade’s government, little wonder we have not seen any reasonable development in the area because there is no unity of purpose to attract such development. Inspite of all reports and newspapers publications, Ayade is yet to take a bold step in the saga.
Secondly, the struggle for who becomes the “PDP POLITICAL LEADER IN BOKI’’. Sadly, this was another tug of war between same Ayade appointees. What a show of political strength! This tussle for the leadership position has further strengthened the division in the area because as it stands, they are two PDP camps in Ayade’s government.
Some appointees are loyal to one camp, while others are bowing to the other camp. Three weeks ago, the head of one of the camps, a top Ayade appointee, as it was alleged, had to suspend the payment of salaries of some appointees loyal to the other camp. This is a show of `might’ I guess!
Thirdly, four Ayade appointees are eyeing the Boki/Ikom Federal Constituency come 2019. They are seriously carrying out underground works with a view that they get their master’s annointing for the slot. This is where the whole episode revolves around, `their self interest in 2019’.
If Ayade must win Boki in 2019, he must then address all these challenges and collapsing all these separate camps and structures into one big camp.
This drama, created upon by these PDP actors have given the opposition in the area a nod to do a thorough campaing using their loop-holes.
It therefore beholves on the youths, who are vulnerable in election malpractices to thread with caution.
It is time for politicians in the area to sheath their sword and work for the ultimate purpose of making Boki nation great again.
Like Goodluck Jonathan said in 2015: “No politicians ambition is worth the blood of any Nigerian’’.