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Over the years, concerned Igala men and women have lamented the level of underdevelopment in Igala’s land despite dominating juicy political positions in the state.

Many have channelled their literatures through both electronic media and print media but to no avail as their eyebrows have not received serious attention.

It is in this light Dr Bernard Ojonugwa Anhthony, encapsulates his own school of thought on the underdevelopment in Igala land in what he titles:

Let us read Dr Bernard Ojonugwa Anthony:

” Igalaland is in dire need of quality representation. A trip through her chequered history of leadership circle in Kogi state reveals that Igala has bitten and chewed more than other ethnic groups in the state.

Painfully, a visit to Igalaland shows an unfortunate paradox in our rulership – the land appears more backward than other parts of the state.

This is a sad reality that is hard for any sensible person to grapple with.

Elections season is here again and those who once abandoned the Land are trooping back home, making consultation, manipulating the minds of our people and telling them how qualified they are.

It is our responsibility to educate our people and ask them to be weary of those with “abdulistic” and “adagbalistic” tendencies.

These euphemisms have become the allegories that best describe the polity of Igalaland.

An “Abdul” is always away when his father’s house is in confusion.

He is that child that runs away from home in the face of adversity.

During hunger, lack and suffering, you won’t see Abdul.

He behaves like a prodigal son who travels to distance land, squanders his fortunes, only to remember home when hunger becomes his closest friend.

An Abdul is that man who sleeps, and snores when people are toiling the ground, preparing heaps, opening the grounds and seeding, only to wake up during harvest time.

The political space of Igalaland is dominated by many Abduls.

“Adagba” on the other hand is a cousin to “Abdul”.

In fact, nature has preserved a great resemblance between them and most times, it takes wit to differentiate these two brothers, who at the surface may look alike, but are not exactly the same.

An Adagba sees politics as an end, rather than a means.

For him, politics is like an elephant meat that is meant to be shared.

An Adagba is an opportunist whose political mission is how to amass wealth, even at the expense of the future generations.

Igala must get it right this time. But if we must, we have to get rid of all those with Abdulisitc and Adagbalistic tendencies.

This is not the time to allow the Abduls and the Adagbas to sell the land for a miserable pot of porridge.

If they must win our votes, we must ask pertinent questions about their antecedents.

We need those that can heal the wound of the past, rescue us from poverty, hunger and unemployment, not those that will plunge our tomorrow into a more catastrophic state.

Igalaland is bigger than individual interest. Our years of rulership in the state have fetched us no fortunes, only troubles and underdevelopment.

It is disturbing that for over sixteen years (16 years) of our dominance in the state, we cannot beat our chest with pride to tell the whole world how we have used our positions to assuage the plights of our people.

A visit to Ankpa, the commercial city of Igalaland; Idah, the seat of Igala kingdom and Dekina, the industrial hope of Igalaland, will leave you with tears than joy.

It is worrisome that the Senatorial District that has produced three successive Governors can only boast of a single Water Board, situated in Anyigba.

You will all agree with me that the water facility in Anyigba is grossly inadequate and constantly suffers dilapidation as a result of lack of maintenance.

However, I thank all the Abokis, the water vendors in Anyigba, for their generous distribution.

While the old politicians boast of beings students of Our Ladies of Schools, Saint Charles, Ochaja Boys, GSS Dekina, etc, all these schools are now shadows of themselves. No thanks to our leaders!

The various Local Government Education Authorities (LGEA) schools no longer exist, and where they do, they lack basic amenities.

In this twenty first century, pupils still sit under trees to receive instruction from teachers that still write with charcoal.

Oh, what a mess!! It is time to start asking these power mongers, these Abduls and Adagbas to report what they have done to deserve our votes.

Our Mumu Don Do!!! Let’s put an end to this foolishness.

We have Governors and Senators that ply on terrible roads to their ancestral homes.

It’s only in Igalaland you will find such. We must resist the old politicians who have “Adagbalized” the resources of our dear land.

The future is in our hand! Let’s put an end to this foolishness!!

In the midst of the above gloomy picture, there are those who have distinguished themselves; those that have served diligently without blemish.

Yes, history will always remember the labour of these Heroes and Heroines.

There is no doubt Hajia Salamatu Beiwa Umar-Eluma is an Amazon, a woman of substance, the contemporary Inikpi, who has performed exceedingly and above her peers.

She has empowered men and women, across every part of Igalaland. No contemporary Igala woman can beat her records.

Dr. Victor Alewo Adoji of Zenith Bank is an intelligent young and vibrant achiever, who has also followed the train of exceptional performance in his chosen career.

His personal Foundation has empowered thousands of students and graduates across the state.

His influence in Zenith Bank has empowered business men and intending business men within and outside Igalaland.

He’s a passionate young man, who strongly believes in the prosperity of Igalaland through quality representation.

He is the chord that connects the past and the present, the young and the old, today and tomorrow.

Show me an intelligent Igala man, I will quickly point at Victor Alewo Adoji.

Another Igala achiever is Prof. Seidu Onailo Mohammad, the Director General, National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA).

His employment hospitality has no bound. To whom much is given, much is expected.

These individuals have given much to the Land and much should be expected from us to them.

In view of the above, the role of youth cannot be over emphasized. There is power in the ballot box.

The Permanent Voters’ Card, popularly known as the PVC, can dwarf the height of the tallest politician; it can reduce the wallets of the richest politicians to nothing.

Let the youth therefore shun political violence and avoid being used as political thugs.

It is disheartening and discouraging to note that Igala Kingdom loses a lot of young and promising youths in political violence orchestrated by the same youth in the name of thuggery.

Let the traditional rulers invoke the spirit of our ancestors, make public pronouncement against such act.

If not, further electioneering algebra may leave us with sequence of mysterious exits of our promising young men. May God forbid!!!

All doors should be closed against politicians that have never meant well for the Igala race.

Such politicians should not be celebrated. The Ata (Ata Igala) should call them to order. We deserve a report of stewardship before re-election.

Our economic resources are God-given; let’s use them judiciously for the growth and development of Igalaland.

We should be ready to say “enough is enough” to continuous underdevelopment, poverty and unemployment.

Our parents at home are dying of malnutrition, and hunger.

We have no industry in Igalaland, except the Cashew industry that has become the only hope for the rural dwellers.

The educational kingdom describes as Kogi State University is on the hospital line yelling and bawling for immediate attention as the intestines no longer get the required food and water.

It is time to come together for the growth of Igalaland. Enough of “Abdulistic and Adagbalistic” politicians in Igalaland.

Let’s write their obituaries at once. Igala must rise again! ”

Bernard Ojonugwa Anthony, Ph.D NAEE, IAEE, INEN
PRESIDENT GEN., Igala Youth Association of Nigeria (IYAN)

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