Following the Massacre in Offa, the Second largest city in Kwara State, the states “Governor” reactively finally announced that the state would be purchasing armoured carriers for Offa to supplement police and bolster security in that city. He then pleaded with onlookers that he not be blamed for the violence and carnage that engulfed the city.
I have a few questions for the “governor” if he is even worthy of being called that. Did Governor Ahmed purchase armoured vehicles for himself and his wife? Did he supply them to his deputy and his wife? If so, then certainly he cannot deny knowing the utility of them and thus allocated the states resources to protect those he wanted to protect. The fact that these supplies were not present in the states second largest city up until the Massacre means clearly that the “Governor” and his predecessor did not view the people of the city of Offa as being worthy of the expenditure. If they believed Offa was worth protecting they would have acted accordingly.
The city has been attacked 3 times in the past decade, twice now under “governor” Ahmed. In Lagos, and other states, police have surveillance drones and armoured carriers that are supplied to them by the state governments to safeguard the citizenry. Yet in Kwara these attrocities were followed by inaction and a complete and total disdain for the wellbeing of the citizenry by the “governor” and his predecessor. This last attack on Offa lasted about 2 hours, not 2 minutes, or 20 minutes, but TWO HOURS, meaning there was no resistance at all! The fact that no drones, and no armoured carriers were presents in offa, until this “governor” paraded his pathetic armoured motorcade into Offa to pretend as if he cared, speaks volumes about the total neglect that has been shown toward Offa by the states “government”.
Unfortunately it is not much better statewide. For the past 8 years, Kwara State has been completely and totally leaderless. The stooge put in place at the statehouse has made that very clear at every juncture. After all, this is the same “governor” who paid his predecessor a pension (who was also collecting salary and allowances from another well-paid government position), while AT THE SAME TIME was failing to pay poor retired state pensioners throughout the state, many of whom died while waiting, and failed to pay actual State workers for over six months! One of whom, Biodun Bashir, hung himself in agony, after being unable to provide for his family not receiving pay for over 6 months! The people of Baruten LGA have no government to speak of in Nigeria, an thus are now joining Benin Republic! Thus a sitting “governor” found it more important that his predecessor could collect two streams of government checks and benefits, while state workers, pensioners, residents from Offa to Baruten, in his state were left out to hang by their necks. The fact that these two people allowed this unspeakable injustice to occur speaks volumes about who they truly are as people what they truly stand for. While all this came to light as a result of a Code of Conduct probe, it is worth asking Kwarans what would these people have done if all this did not come to the light? It’s what people do when nobody is watching that tells you who they are.
It thus comes as no surprise that the people of Offa were left hanging for 2 hours to be slaughtered, and nothing was done beef up security after the same incident happened 5 years before in the “governors” tenure. Despite all this, every utterance of the “governor” has been tantamount to saying “it’s not my fault” and “don’t blame me”. He even had the audacity to say that by blaiming him critics were being disrespectful to the dead in Offa. This is the same “governor” that has yet to visit the homes of a single victim, has not attended a single funeral service, has not paid for a single funeral, something that any real leader would have done. Yet he is lecturing those pointing out his incompetence about honouring victims? It’s time we hold this disgraceful display of “governance” to account and hold “governor” Ahmed’s feet to the fire. Since he does not want to own up to his own failures and apologize, there is nothing useful the “governor” has to say at this point.
For all this to end, Kwara Must Change, and in that, the people of the state must stand together in unity. Any attempt by elites to divide the population along ethnic, regional, generational, or religious lines, will only result in the past repeating itself. When it came to unpaid pensions, Kwarans of every dispensation were affected. When it came to Offa, Kwarans of every religion and stripe lost their lives. When it comes to unpaid salaries, or school session being held under trees, and total abandonment of Baruten, Kwarans from every region, and every LGA have been suffering. If Kwarans stand together, shoulder to shoulder, with one goal of cutting down the tree that has left the state and its people hanging out to die, the future of the state lies firmly in their hands. Together, they can take back their state, and when they do, I believe that together there is nothing that the people of Kwara cannot accomplish.
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