It was ridiculous reading Chief of Staff to the Kogi State Governor, Mr. Edward Onoja warning the state workers to “keep mute on happenings in Kogi State or risk sanction.”
The warning to Kogi workers is a manifest ignorance and an oblique understanding of what democracy is all about by Mr. Edward Onoja and his Principal, Alhaji Yahaya Bello.
The warning further casts slur and questions the integrity of those at the helm of affairs in Kogi State as if the State can be armtwisted to suite the whims and caprice of the few autocratic leaders.
Reading the statement further showed the lack of good conscience of Mr. Onoja despite his ugly role in the disastrous misrule of Yahaya Bello’s administration.
Freedom of expression is not only a sacrosanct rights enshrined in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999) as amended, but there is a “whistle blowing policy” put in place by the government. In fact whistle blowers get paid officially with good money, so Kogites should better speak out especially on embezzlement of funds in the state.
Nigeria runs an open society like any other democractic nations of the world and the idea of policies such as these was to run a transparent government on behalf of the people.
One knows where the Chief of Staff to the Governor is driving at.
Kogi State is likely to be the most corrupt state in the federation today with over N300 billion accrued to the state without commensurate services.
Talking about anatomy of corruption in Kogi State in the last three and half years, Edward Onoja played a strategic role. Therefore, one is not surprised that there is paranoia in their camp now that things are falling apart. The warning is to scare workers from revealing further secrets of financial underhand dealings in the state. Ganaja bridge scam which is now in the public domain might have prompted this development.
It is worrisome that the threat was coming from Onoja who is supposed to work behind the scene in his position as the Chief of Staff. Because of excess quest for power, Onoja plays interloper and usurper in the state affairs.
Who is a Chief of Staff?
According to Wikipedia: “The Chief of Staff generally works behind the scenes to solve problem; mediate disputes and deal with issues before they are brought to the chief executive. Often, Chief of Staff act as a confidante and advisor to Chief Executive, acting as a sounding board.”
Contrary to this age-long responsibility of the Chief of Staff, Edward Onoja is everything in Kogi State. The state has been imperiled and there is nothing that should be kept away from the public anymore. Workers should ignore Mr. Onoja and speak out!
More revelations of dirty deals in the state would make the Kogites form a strong opinion that will oust Yahaya Bello and Edward Onoja from governance on November 16 gubernatorial elections.
– Atekojo Samson Usman
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