Re: Kassim Afegbua’s Stomach Democracy – By Modestus Okechukwu Umenzekwe

Kassim Afegbua
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It is really interesting that Mr Kassim Afegbua claimed to have worked with a state government and have a full understanding of how things work, but his piece on Mr Babatunde Fashola in the Daily Telegraph of 08/08/17 did not point to that fact.

It appears the writer of ‘stomach democracy’ has personal grudges against Fashola who is trying his best to write his name in the sand of time by making sure that there is a new narrative for infrastructural situation in Nigeria.

Mr Kassim claimed that the state government across the country are no longer working on the collapsed federal roads in their localities but he failed to impress his readers on which administration actually refused to refund them.



Certainly gentleman Fashola should not be expected to take responsibility for the crimes of not refunding the states by his predecessors or preceding administration, it is true that traveling through Nigeria roads have become nightmare but then Kassim should know as person who has been in the corridors of power that the rottenness in the infrastructure of Nigeria occasioned by persistent executive recklessness cannot be resolved in the four year tenure of the incumbent administration.

Be that as it may, one must still commend the Fashola and his team for giving hope to people across the country that things can be better, Kassim and his co travellers should know that work has commenced on the abandoned Onitsha-Enugu express way which has become non-existent under the watch of many previous leaders.

The stomach democracy boss said that the Minna road is still as Gen Ibrahim Babangida left it twenty five years ago, it is really gratifying that he acknowledged the fact that the issue of systematic decay of the road has taken a whooping twenty five years but he refused to acknowledge the fact that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari which brought Babatunde Fashola on board is less than three years.

Stomach democracy exponent should please inform his numerous readers of how many ministers that have been in the saddle of leadership Fashola is occupying today yet failed to address the downward slope in the infrastructural condition of the nation.
He did not mention his brother former works Minister Dr (Arc) Onolomeme coming from same senatorial zone with Kassim. And for mentioning this road Gen. IBB built since 25yrs ago, me thinks he is parochial especially when he didn’t point out East-West road that led to former President’s state,  that killed so many commuters, which Raji fashola is doing now.
He would have recognized the over 41 road been re constructed across the country as well as the 2nd Niger bridge, Apapa , Tin Can island roads  fashola is re-constructing them now
Even the Enugu- Onitsha , Port Harcourt-Enugu, Owerri- Elele-Port Harcourt Rd as well as Kaduna – Birinin Gwari-Kontogora-Tegna-Jebba express roads

Honestly, Mr Kassim painted a sorry picture of himself when he attempted to blame Fashola for the deplorable situation of Okene-Benin road, I think he should remind himself of how the former federal administration was dancing kelewu on that particular road if not for the intervention of the former governor of Edo state, Comrade Adams Oshiomole who worked on some roads in his state that alleviated the suffering of the traveling masses yet Kassim failed to see anything good in that, he equally refused to put the blame where it rightly belonged by not blaming the former president, Dr Goodluck Jonathan for not refunding the hardworking former Edo governor.

Kassim at a point in his write up summersaulted when he accused BUA, the cement trucks of not carrying out their social responsibility of not rehabilitating the deplorable Okene-Benin road, I wonder how that should be responsibility of Fashola, or is it that he expect him to force the company he is not a part owner to be responsible.
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My dear, stomach democracy chief should let the reading public know the administration of Dr Goodluck Jonathan failed woefully when it comes to infrastructural development of the nation, the only place that appeared to receive a positive touch for the last administration is the Abuja FCT, yet even at that it is only the high brow areas in FCT that can boast of good road network, a visit to the interlaid of the FCT will convince a doubting Thomas that Fashola is indeed an angel who is struggling to clear the rubbish past demonic leaders have instituted.

I wish to inform Mr Kassim that I was plying the Jebba-Tegina road as a teenager, now I am fifty and I can say with all sense of responsibility that the condition and fortune of the road has remained the same since and that the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo rushed there  when the Bridge at Tatabu collapsed should be commended and not condemned.

There are many reasons the present administration should be commended, first the last government because of recklessness and impunity throw the nation into a serious economic recession, this is coupled with the fact that there are many infrastructural need of the country begging for urgent attention yet the likes of Kassim will not appreciate the enormity of the task before Fashola and his team.

What he only attempted to do is to play local politics of telling Nigerians what the government he claimed to serve failed woefully to give democratic dividends to the people. Mr Kassim is better referred to as a master of double talk.

One can only plead with Babatunde Fashola not to be distracted by cry of ants like Kassim who want to make issues where non-exists. Nigeria’ s infrastructure are better off under the watch of Fashola.  All the little resources at his disposal should be evenly distributed across the country without fear, posterity will certainly judge him for his good works.
This piece is contributed by Chief Modestus Okechukwu Umenzekwe from Lagos state via  modestusokechukwu661@yahoo.com


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