OP-ED Opinions 

Umar Duhu: Love For The Poor Or Love For Lucre? By Babayola M. Toungo

Someone just send to my inbox a letter addressed to the Chairman of the National Assembly and the Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Covid 19 on the purported distribution of the palliatives given to Adamawa State by the Federal Government for delivery to the vulnerable groups (the poor of the poor) in our society.  The writer, one Umar Duhu was incoherent in my opinion as the further I go in his write up the more I get confused as to whether he was trying to run down governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri or attempting to warm his way into the good books of the APC honchos in Abuja. He also sounded as if there is deep seated animosity in the man’s heart for Fintiri’s “insolence” in defeating his political idol and meal ticket, Mohammed Jibirilla Bindow.  The other possibility may not be unconnected with his inability to get over his increasing diminishing political relevance in the politics of Adamawa state. In other words, he is still in hangover mode.

To paraphrase Ayn Rand, “politics is a recreation of reality according to a politician’s metaphysical value-judgement”.  Not that I expect some out there to understand the deeper meaning of Rand’s statement. It is alright if people use politics to “eat” but what is not alright is when people tell deliberate lies about others simply because they are not charged with the commonweal, which when it was entrusted to them, they sought to bankrupt.  The worst thing is that they may have good intentions but lacked the capacity (intellectual or otherwise) to so do. So, when others are doing the best they can and they know they will never do in a thousand years, they become jittery. Their stock-in-trade is to either pull you down or boot-lick to survive and maintain a false sense of importance.

Sadly, this genre of homo sapiens exist.  Their sole stock is to bark from time to time to remind those who hire their ‘expertise’ that they still exist.  They live-off those who either toil to make the world a better place for the vulnerable or those who love to throw spanners in the works.  Though they know they are paper weights, but they live in a self-inflated ego-balloon. But this is not the way I wanted to introduce my piece.  I simply got carried away by my emotion.

The kernel of Duhu’s missive can be divided into two – his delusionary distribution of trailer loads of rice and his thinly-veiled attempt to put himself back on the shelf for any buyer.  I will advise any buyer to beware. Elementary investigation at the federal government level, where Duhu is well “connected” will have shown him that not a single bag of rice was given to any state bar Lagos by the federal government for distribution to the people.  I know for a fact that there is a move by the federal government through NEMA to distribute rice to the states for the purpose of ameliorating any hardship that may arise from the lockdown in many states. As I write, no state has received its allocation. So, any distribution to as itemized by Duhu in his letter is illusionary and therefore dangerous – dangerous to him.  He would have saved himself this odium if he had taken half the time, he used to write his sugar-coated bile core letter in investigating and ascertaining the true position of things. Or maybe he has fired the first shot to his foot in his self-inflicted descent to political abyss. 

The Adamawa state government, led by his excellency, Rt. Hon. Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri is distributing rice and other foodstuff to the poor in Adamawa state and this is done from the meagre resources of the state and not from any federal largesse.  It is out of the love for his people that the governor is doing this and if the likes of you and me don’t get it, then we certainly don’t deserve it. When I see “stakeholders” in other states giving their widows’ mite to assist the governments in taking care of the poor, I feel angry at our so-called “stakeholders”  Duhu would have done well by donating a trailer of rice to his immediate community and we will have followed suit.

The Adamawa state government is doing the best it can in the prevailing circumstances to enhance the living condition of a people who went through four years of broken promises and governance by deceit.  Fintiri inherited a government that was deliberately ‘overloaded’ with last-minute employments by a vindictive administration on its way out. Some of those who participated in this political scorched earth administration must be forced to bury their heads in shame instead of having the gall to come from time to time to rub it in our faces.

Covid – 19 does not know any tribal marks, creed or political affiliation.  It has practically grounded everyone, no matter his or her status. We should pray that it leaves our shores soonest not see it as an opportunity to settle perceived political scores with perceived political opponents.  Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri is the governor of Adamawa state and we must learn to live with it or go jump in the river. Opposition shouldn’t turn us into story tellers nor make us lose our sense our decency and judgment.

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