Rejoinder: The Injustice of the EBF Adoption
I read with amusement the publication of one Kehinde Yusuf titled “The “Injustice of EBF Adoption” and I laughed out load, not because of the prolificacy of the writer but out of pity for the outright crass ignorance, emptiness and twisted thoughts of a mercenary wannabe publicist. It reminds me of the words of Baron De Montesquieu when he said” the less men think the more they talk”
Kehinde Yusuf knows nothing about the EBF and this is so evident and pronounced in his misguided, misthought out and hallow publication.
He started his diatribe without facts and figures. He wrote that Chris Ngige SAN got majority of his votes from the southeast during the 2012 NBA Elections but failed to state the figures to buttress his concorted assertion as he who asserts must prove. He had none. I stand to be corrected any day by whoever that has better facts to prove me wrong because I pontificate from a position of authority as the de facto Director General of Chief Hon. Okey Wali SAN DSSR Campaign Organization. The core Southeast stood with Okey Wali SAN through thick and thin before, during and after the 2012 Elections. If not for the massive and well coordinated support given to Okey Wali SAN by the generality of EBF members in spite of desperate moves by some desperate Nigerians in the corridors of power in their moribund style of politicking to turn the Apple cart in Ngige’s favour, it would have been a different story. But members of the EBF from the core east stood firm on the adoption of Chief Okey Wali SAN and the rest is history.
On the ignorant compartmentalization of the EBF as postulated by Kehinde Yusuf into three zones to wit; the East Central made up of Igbo States, the Rivers/Bayelsa Group and the CrossRiver/ Akwa Ibom States, I find it most ridiculous as the EBF does not have three compartmentalization but two ie the Southeast made up of the Igbo States and the Southsouth made up of Rivers, Bayelsa, Cross Rivers and Akwa Ibom States. Positions in the EBF are rotated between the two compartments. The office of Chairman and Secretary in the EBF is rotated between the Southeast and the Southsouth Zones. No zone can succeed itself on these positions as it rotates from one zone to the other. When I was privileged to serve as Secretary of the Forum between 2013-2015, the Chairman of the Forum, Chief Ogbonnaya Igwenyi represented the Southeast and i represented Southsouth. Going back to 2011-2013, when Hon. Kemasuode Wordu from Southsouth served as Chairman, Chief Ogbonnaya Igwenyi from the Southeast served as Secretary. Fast forward to 2015-2017, Elder Effefiom Ekong from the Southsouth served as Chairman while Sir Basil Aguigwo from the Southeast served as Secretary. Presently we have Sir Arthur Elvis Chukwu from the Southeast as Chairman while Paul Ubom from the Southsouth is serving as Secretary. Veering off to the NBA elections, the rotational principle, tradition and convention has always come to play and all those who defied EBF in this regard paid dearly for it. In 2012 NBA National elections, EBF zoned the Presidency to the Southsouth and Hon. Okey Wali SAN from the Southsouth and Chief Emeka Ngige SAN from the Southeast were positioned to run for the said office, the EBF in line with its rotational tradition adopted Hon. Okey Wali SAN as its candidate, Chief Chris Ngige SAN defied the EBF and the end story is there to tell. Before Okey Wali SAN when it was the turn of the Eastern Region to produce the President in 2006, it became the turn of the Southeast and Olisa Agbakoba SAN from the Southeast was adopted by EBF and elected as President. Nobody from the Southsouth ran against him as the Southsouth under Hon. O.C.J. Okocha MFR. SAN, JP had produced the President in 2000. Chief Mba Ukweni SAN the Chairman of Akwacross Lawyers Forum puts it more succinctly when he said thus “It will be an act of wickedness and injustice on our part after this to turn back against the rich adoption process of EBF,. Never!
The fact that nobody from Cross Rivers or Akwa Ibom has been President or General Secretary of NBA from the Cross Rivers/ Akwa Ibom axis as painted by the so called Kehinde Yusuf since the days of Methuselah is the fault of nobody or institution. When you position yourself rightly and at the right time, nothing stops you from becoming what you want to be. Time and precision is of essence in politics and I state unequivocally that this is not the time for a candidate from Akwacross.
On the issue of the four last NBA Presidents from the core east being from Anambra State as stated by Kehinde Yusuf. It is at his point interesting to point out that Prof Ernest Ojukwu. SAN was the Sole Administrator of the EBF during the 2006 elections when Olisa Agbakoba SAN was adopted, so it then portrays from Kehinde Yusuf postulations that Olisa paid more money to Prof Ojukwu SAN as against Chief Chris Uche SAN to get the adoption of EBF. Ditto for all other candidates who were adopted by the EBF. We can all see the tomfoolery in Kehinde Yusuf thought process.
On the issue of class and panache allegedly being displayed by Paul Usoro SAN, Kehinde please what is class and penache? it is a thing of the mind and subjective. It depends on who is making the definition. To me I tell you, if you want to see style, class and a believer of Epicurus, check out Arthur Obi Okafor SAN. He is humility personified and I humbly present him to you as the President of NBA come August, 2018.
‘S. Long Williams Esq
Former Secretary, NBA PH Branch and Former Secretary Eastern Bar Forum writes from Port Harcourt
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