There is no wisecrack here, but an honest answer to the rhetorical question above will end my worry and anxiety as something out of the ordinary recently happened to the entire Igede people.
The reader may want to know what it is by reading this piece.
To start with, I charge us all to ponder over why an Igede and apparently, the best aspirant in the recent APC Benue South senatorial primary was betrayed by his kins.
For the avoidance of doubt, I refer to the former UN envoy and one of three aspirants in the recent inconclusive Benue South senatorial primary of the governing APC; Dr. Isaac Egboja.
While betrayal is a normal political experience in Nigeria, it doesn’t have to come from those you call your own. It is worse when it comes from people adjudged as political leaders as was the experience of Dr. Egboja.
By their deeds, we could call these betrayals the bad eggheads within the leadership of the Igede political class.
In the just conducted APC Primary, there were three aspirants for the Benue South senatorial seat. These were: Chief Steven Lawani, Dr. Isaac Akwuma Egboja and Mr. Daniel Onjeh.
Without controversy, Oju-born Egboja towers above his two co-aspirants in sophistication, education and probably exposure but perhaps less in resource accumulation.
He was also the most popular candidate during the campaigns. Regardless of this, he took the rear in the primary as he got less votes than the other aspirants.
Shocking still, those who should be trusted for the fact of their Igede bonding sold out the manner of Judas Iscariot to Jesus Christ.
Allegations are rife that the Igede political leaders who played Judas to Dr. Egboja included Barr. Jacob Ajene, aka BOJACO; Hon. Nick Eworo, Hon. Pinot Ogbaji, Chief John Enyi, Mr. Dave Ode and others who openly campaigned against the lone Igede senatorial aspirant.
Although the fire was said to have been raging quietly against Dr. Isaac Akwuma Egboja, it alegedly escalated in Makurdi during the gubernatorial primaries of the APC. It was then that Pinot Ogbaji and Nick Eworo allegedly started to tell Igede delegates not to vote for Dr. Egboja.
The subtle hostility continued even when the delegates were on the queue to vote. Some of them alegedly lied to the unsuspecting delegates that Dr. Egboja had stepped down for Chief Lawani when there was no such thing.
According to sources, Rt. Hon. Nick Eworo’s case, as in practically telling delegates to vote against Dr. Egboja, became so glaring that security agents had to chase him away from the venue of the vote, after several warnings to desist.
Also against Dr. Egboja, it was rumored that a prominent Engineer of Igede extraction who is based in Abuja some time ago allegedly called Br. Jacob Ajene and scolded him for trying to support Dr. Isaac Egboja’s senatorial campaign. Since then, the Engineer was said to have been using Jacob to distablize Dr. Egboja because he wants to be Governor of Benue State in 2023 and Dr. Egboja’s emergence as Senator will prevent him from achieving his goal. What a fallacy and what a shame!
Considering that each of these people is mature enough to defend the cause of Igede, this hostility and sabotage are not just against Dr. Egboja as a person, but the entire Igede Nation.
Considering that each of the 23 wards from Obi and Oju LGA combined had 27 delegates in addition to the Local Government Excos and other statutory delegates, there were at least 650 delegates from Oju and Obi combined who should have voted for Dr. Egboja.
Apart from these delegates, Dr. Egboja enjoyed the tremendous goodwill and support of Agatu, Apa, Ohimini, Ado and Otukpo LGAs and days before the election everybody believed that he was the aspirant to beat. With all the conspiracy and denial, the appropriate question to ask Igede is, what do they want?
Unfortunately, the battle for political supremacy in Obi LGA (between Jacob Ajene/Rt. Hon. Samson Okwu on the one hand and Nick Eworo/Pinot Ogbaji on the other hand), has now been extended to Oju with the alliance between Patricia Kupchi and Jacob Ajene.
Though they ganged-up against Egboja and stopped his victory at the poll, they only succeeded against his struggle to end Igede political marginalization soon. However, like the saying goes, the struggle continues.
But, I still ask, what does an Igede person want and where do we go from here???