July 19, 2024

#Equity Concepts Entertainment Boss, Rowland #Okorie Writes #Tinubu, Condemns #Injustice On #Igbos.

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#Equity Concepts Entertainment Boss, Rowland #Okorie Writes #Tinubu, Condemns #Injustice On #Igbos.

The Chief Executive Officer of Equity Concepts Entertainment cum Founder of Project NWAFOR Igbo, Rowland Okorie, has written an open letter to President Bola Tinubu condemning the injustice meted on Igbo people.

The letter titled; “LETTER TO PRESIDENT BOLA TINUBU: ROTATIONAL INJUSTICE BREWED FOR NDIGBO” reads in full:

Dear President,
I have finally realized that as a responsible citizen I must congratulate you on your victory at the February 2023 presidential election, and urge every other Nigerian to go on their knees every day in prayer to support you spiritually as you attempt fixing our motherland, Nigeria and at the same time navigate land mines hidden in the political maze of your esteemed office.

You, I and everyone in the country know that the problem we have lies on the scale of injustice. I call it Rotational Injustice coloured in tribalistic flavour.

How be it that every tribe represented by one individual come into power and quickly surrounds themselves with their own brothers while making laws and promulgations that favour themselves, their tribe of people and enrich their friends and family.

Like your predecessor who gave the famous “I am for NO body” speech but made sure his blood thirsty brothers had a field day massacring and ethnic cleansing portions of the north. He also made sure he locked and suffered the Independent People of Biafra (IPOB) leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu for no just cause.

Sir, you are toeing the same path. Mazi Nnamdi Kanu s supposed to be a free man by now as I see you to be a peace maker knowing Nigeria will know no peace if you do not do the right thing.

I have seen videos and news of Northern clerics threatening our first lady, your wife; Her Excellency, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, some calling for division of Nigeria something that never happened since the history of the nation. Nnamdi Kanu has never done a thing like that.

Another flavour your predecessor added was the silent treatment and extra lukewarm attitude he had towards making sure Southeast does not have a functioning seaport.

#Equity Concepts Entertainment Boss, Rowland #Okorie Writes #Tinubu, Condemns #Injustice On #Igbos.

After the civil war of 1970, the then Military junta decided to cut off the Southeast to ensure it has no access to the sea and ensure all cargo is handled by Lagos notwithstanding the chaotic traffic congestion.

Sir, once more, with all due respect you too have maintained the same stance held since 1970. It goes a long way to say that someone or a group of people are afraid of the Igbos and their progress.
There are about four seaports in the Southeastern Nigeria, which includes Port-Harcourt, Calabar, Warri, Onne ports, etc. These are state-of-the-art seaports capable of handling tons of cargo to decongest the rot happening at Apapa and Tin-Can.

We have been brainwashed that the following are the reasons why the seaports in Southeast Nigeria are not allowed to function:

They are not ‘viable’, being ‘River Ports’ Port Harcourt, Calabar, Warri, Burutu, Koko are described by experts as river ports. That they lack the draught (depth) to accommodate big vessels thus limiting the types of ships that can call.

Niger Delta militancy issues compounded the situation as Security became (and still is) a big issue for ships and crew.

Then, there is the political dimension viz. the lack of political will and cohesion by South-South/South-Eastern politicians, governors, civil society, leaders, etc. Surely, if they are determined, come together and join forces by cooperation, they can do whatever is necessary e.g. lobby.

When the governors are assured of Federal Allocations every month, which they share, and the merry can simply go on?
Inadequate infrastructure: Some of the seaports in Southeast Nigeria may not have adequate infrastructure to handle large vessels and cargo. This can lead to delays and increased costs, making it difficult for the ports to be competitive.

Corruption: Corruption can also be a major factor in the inability of seaports to function properly. Bribery, kickbacks, and other forms of corruption can result in delays, inefficiencies, and decreased revenue.
Insecurity:

In recent years, the Southeast region of Nigeria has experienced significant security challenges, including armed conflicts, kidnappings, and attacks on critical infrastructure. This can make it difficult for seaports to operate safely and efficiently.

Competition: There may be intense competition between different seaports in the region, leading to inefficiencies and reduced profitability. This can discourage investment and lead to a lack of interest in developing new port facilities.

Overall, a combination of factors such as inadequate infrastructure, corruption, insecurity, and competition can contribute to the inability of seaports in Southeast Nigeria to function effectively.

Contracts for the dredging of the Eastern ports have been awarded severally by the Federal Government via the Nigerian Port Authority without results.

Not only does It come down to Leadership failure “from top to bottom” but like I said before, smack of a primitive animosity for a thriving race of people with the spirit of enterprise.

Where in Nigeria is there no difficulty in simple operations? But life goes on. Why make the Southeast a perpetual outstanding example of failure?

Ports are in the exclusive list (List of infrastructure that can only be built by FG or with FG approval).

Ports are usually man made, are bigger and has many facilities (buildings, wharfs, warehouse, railways, etc.) Ports are used for loading and unloading ships.

Also, when such an infrastructure is built, only the FG or FG approved bodies that can get revenue from such infrastructure.

So states are not inclined to build them because there is no money to build and high chance revenue won’t accrue to them if they build.

A huge reason for the revenue part of things is that corporate taxes currently go to.

Is it out of place to make an exception for Ndigbo to build their own seaport under PPP and take all the risk? Such an understanding can be made at no cost to the Federal government if I am making sense.

Why is Lagos the only state with a working port facility in Nigeria? A country with over 200 million population.

What is this thing people always say that some parts of Nigeria are landlocked? Someone once wrote… Nigeria is not a landlocked country at all.

We have 36 states in Nigeria. We do have inland waters and sea all over. Look at Nigeria Map. You can see the Atlantic Ocean stretching from Lagos to Calabar.

Mr. President, with due respect, I and many Ndigbo do not honestly take your government seriously, and though, this may be justified given the realities of everyday hardship and rumours of uprising against most of your policies, it does make all of us sad.

I implore you as a matter of urgency to address this and many other pressing issues like the food, the rise of the dollar, fuel subsidy and power supply.

Your position on most of these issues brews mistrust. This profound distrust in your government makes Igbo people uniquely unamenable to change.
Your government is about to be labeled the worse in history of Nigeria.

Encouraging Igbo importers all over the world to stop importation will cripple your government for sure, Igbos do not want that for you. We will not protest against you.

Your predecessors are causing your government more pains so a common man cannot build his own home?

Dangote and his colleagues have taken away food from Ibeto. Don’t you think it is a good idea to restore competition in cement so that we can afford houses? I leave that for you and your advisers to do the needful and restore Ibeto 100 percent right as a Nigerian who is equally capable of solving those needs. Cement price must crash.

A critical review of your first 100 days is crucial. You have no excuse in saying I am for nobody left the entire Nations’ savings empty because you showed us your own blueprint.

Time is of the essence, and it is crucial that you act now to restore the faith of Nigerians and Ndigbo in your Government.

I write for myself here because I am hanging by a thread and hoping that this “Renewed Hope” administration works efficiently and hopefully we will survive and get to the end of the tunnel.

This government must work because you said Take it, grab it and run with it because it is your turn.

All we are begging for is that it is our turn to survive. Previous administrations have been harsh, brutal and out rightly wicked.

Sir, we are stuck with you for probably another eight years, I and my fellow Igbos demand to see a seaport in our lifetime so your name can go down in the history of Ndi Igbo as the leader who broke the 1970 jinx and single-handedly  changed the norm and opened the door to development of the south east.

Rowland Okorie
MD/Chief Executive Officer
Equity Concepts Entertainment
Founder,
Project NWAFOR Igbo

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