By Odimegwu Onwumere
A colleague once told me that he is used to such noise. When he was writing a column for a national newspaper, a lot of people abused him each time he wrote and exposed a former governor in the South-East. One of the abusers even took a full page in another national newspaper to reply him. According to my colleague, the abuser warned him that he (my colleague) was based in Abuja and had no links to Aba, Umuahia, Owerri or any other part of South-East, and as such, must be on the payroll of a former governor of one of the states in the region. My colleague said that he later met his abuser in Abuja after that episode, and he (abuser) bought him beer and entertained him and said that my colleague’s article actually gave him (the abuser) some money. That he got a budget to reply my colleague. So, my colleague told me that he was used to such. He warned me that I should not even think about getting fair comment on this writing career because those who feel I am hurting their source of money will fight me.
Like my colleague, I am also used to such tantrums and now have an abuser in one Ugochukwu Emezue who parades himself as the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to the Abia State Governor. In his rather jaundiced propaganda he circulated on the Internet on Wednesday, 8 August 2012 against me through an e-mail – email@example.com – he took pills prescribed for leprosy for malaria. He left to give answers to the questions I posited in my recent article entitled, “Why Orji Will Not Thank God”. Emezue rather preferred to bask in the excitement of not losing his job, but has succeeded in exposing himself to public ridicule, where he is chasing shadow, against me. His body language has added a voice to the position of my colleague that there are people who are opposed to the truth, because of the money they are rewarded for their heinous work from their paymaster(s).
With my picture published alongside his mischievous message against me, Emezue in three separate articles circulated as breaking news, maybe to attract people’s attention, said that I am a blackmailer, ex-convict, linked to Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu… Hear him: “It was learnt that Kalu used him for his dirty deals while in office and all the promises the former governor made to him were not fulfilled. Angered by this, Onwumere who was once jailed in Port Harcourt for libel, threatened to expose Kalu, a situation that forced the Igbere politician to enter into an agreement to pay him 30 thousand a month to blackmail…” Emezue said that I roam the streets of Port Harcourt complaining, that Kalu does not want to employ me in SUN newspapers. And that his sources close to Kalu confirmed his investigation.
He further said that I write poor articles. Can someone please tell Emezue that he writes rich articles as we can see and read how he has been misleading Governor T.A Orji by telling him that all are well because he was afraid that I was threatening his source of money with truth? In defending Chinedu Orji (Ikuku), the son of Gov. Orji, Emezue could not tell us the occupation of the junior Orji, but rather was making foolery of himself thus: “Onwumere has again engaged in another futile effort as he tries in vain to blackmail. In a poorly written article, (his now famous trademark), the ex-convict who claims to be a poet questioned the rationale behind the powering of OCHENDO YOUTH EMPOWERMENT SCHEME by Ikuku…”
Hear Emezue again and make your judgment: “For the records, Engr. Chinedu is first a bright and ingenuous Abia Youth before being the son of the Governor. He does not hold any political office, neither is he employed by Abia State government. He has the interest of budding Abia Youths at heart and has consistently sought for a better life for the very many of them, who suffer one form of inhibition or the other. The Empowerment Scheme is the brain-child of creative thinking. He uses two major skills – appealing to the conscience of the haves in the society and then speaks to wealthy corporate bodies, individuals and groups with reason. In turn, he harnesses tremendous support from these bodies just for the benefit of Abia Youths.”
While Emezue fumed before thinking, what did he tell the world that was the occupation of Chinedu as his track recorder of humanitarian services? Where was Chinedu getting all the money for these media-oriented “humanitarian services”? Not the lies said above. Your guess is good as mine.
I had tried to resist the temptation of joining issue with this literary amoeba, but for the records. In one of his articles against me titled, “Abia Denies Fake Loan Allegation” Emezue succeeded in attracting comments from readers on — thus: (1) Take a walk around Abia State, and Aba in particular, you will weep for the state and ask yourself if truly a sane man rules this state. The governor is clueless, directionless, vague, empty, irresponsible, fake, an albatross, insensitive to what governance is all about and plight of the people. From cemetery road market, Eziukwu rd, Ngwa rd, Azikiwe rd, Ohanku rd, Ama-Ogbonna and many more roads are impassable above these, he laden people with all manner of levy in the bid to amass wealth as much as possible before his tenure expires. He has secret agenda to buy up all buildings in Abia State but before him his son will sell all of them and he will retire to old age with nothing, just mark this words. The only thing worthy of him at this moment is to commit suicide for he is a disgrace on humanity and good conscience. (2) Ugochukwu Emezue knows that Abia State has been unfortunate since Nigeria returned to civil rule. The writer, whom I know in person, isn’t a politician. All the same, Emezue must do what he’s paid to do – tell lies pretending them to be true; turn a blind eye to falsehood to shield his master; rob Peter to pay Paul just to belong and eventually say, “I was only performing my duties.” Abia people need to engage God in prayer of penitence for His mercy and compassion to give them a governor. I’m not a politician and forever would never be, but just thought to correct Emezue’s assertion as to prevent others buying into his misinformation.
I don’t know these people because they commented with their Group names on the website. The second comment has tried to give answer to what Emezue wanted to sell to the public that I was. And I challenge him that if he by any means had any information that I was an ex-convict and all that meant for the trash bin he wrote against me, he should place a paid advertorial in any national newspaper with his name – Ugochukwu Emezue.
My heart bleeds when I read these things from someone who said that he is a CPS. I think that there is nothing wrong with Orji employing a CPS, but he made a wrong choice in Ugochukwu Emezue, who is majorly embarking on revenue drive with his venomous articles just to score a point – make more money from Orji they have hypnotized with wrong information. My worry stalks from the fact that first, Emezue has refused to list the services the Orji-led government is rendering, placing them side by side with revenue accruing from the Federation Account for Abia State. Does he claim to know everything? Then there is staid problem on hand!
Against Kalu he has labeled as “corrupt” I will not say anything on this but will also challenge Emezue to place a paid advertorial in any national newspaper and make bold his claim. Against his claim about my link with Kalu, how I wish that I can work for Kalu for free than work with Emezue in a government that is mostly in motion without action. I beseech Orji to look for a serious Chief Press Secretary and be marveled how informed his government will be and act upon such. I always tell people that corruption isn’t only fraudulent activity or illegal embezzlement of public funds by the politicians, but also when people who are supposed to tell the truth preferred to tell the obverse. What shall we call that kind of practice, if not corruption? Is Emezue not one of them?
It behooves a Chief Press Secretary to tell his boss the truth and not tell mammoth lies based on assumption owing to the fact that he wants to make more money. This practice is like a medical doctor who placed his practice on assumption because all that the doctor wanted was the money that the patient before him or her can cough out. A Chief Press Secretary who tells lies is like in the schools where students have to pay heavily to making sure they pass their exams to the handouts of the rapacious preceptor. A Chief Press Secretary who tells lies is like a clergy in the church that perverts the sound doctrine of his calling for the pursuit of financial gains.
Since Ugochukwu Emezue has come this far with lies, he has bedeviled my hate for people like him who tell lies, now panting to make him a friend to help him learn how to tell the truth and eschew the fear of losing a job because the success of a man is not measured by his financial acquisitions but by the integrity that follows the way he comes about his wealth. I will not again join issues with him against me unless he did place an advertorial against me as I have earlier challenged him.
Odimegwu Onwumereis the Founder of Poet Against Child Abuse (PACA), and a Media Consultant based in Rivers State. Mobile: +2348032552855. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org