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What Has Nnewi Done Wrong, Your Excellency?

NOTE: This piece was uploaded here in 2021, but it was first published in 2011

This is “No Bullshitting”, by Harry Agina

The following was written and published as an open letter to Peter Obi in his second tenure as the governor of Anambra State of Southeast Nigeria. It was a lamentation, which was spurred by Obi’s motherfucking undemocratic madness, thus: 

Your Excellency, it is very apparent that you have a grouse with Nnewi people; the question is—why? What is your grouse, we humbly ask? What has Nnewi done, so grievous that you have decided to forsake her so conspicuously? I write this open letter to appeal to Your Excellency to forgive whatever it is that Nnewi people might have done to you, if any, and give us our due respect in the scheme of things in the State of Anambra.

Nnewi is the second most important city in Anambra State, next to Onitsha. Sorry, point of correction—Nnewi is not really a city yet, but it is long overdue to become one, and that is exactly the point of this letter. Nnewi has all the trappings of a major city, but you have not deemed it necessary to elevate her to this rightful status with simple prerequisite infrastructural development. Have you been to Nnewi lately, and if you have, are you proud of what you saw? Indeed, Nnewi is an eyesore under your watch; quite a disgraceful sight, Your Excellency!

We are talking about the second most important city of your State, for Chrissakes! As a matter of fact, the assessment that Onitsha is more commercially/ industrially important than Nnewi is not a consensus. Some people disagree; they are of the view that Nnewi is more important. Besides the common proclamation that Nnewi is the “headquarters” of automobile spare parts market throughout West Africa, she is the home of numerous trendsetting industries. The Innoson Group of companies in Nnewi, for instace, has gone beyond mere assembly, to the actual manufacture of various forms of motor vehicles––cars, trucks, buses and motor cycles. Nnewi is also the home of Coscharis Motors; the Cento Group of Industries; the Chikason Group of Industries; Cutix Cable Industry; Ibeto Group of Companies, to name just the few. 

Your Excellency, let’s talk business sense here, shall we! To a businessman, Onitsha is the most ‘profitable’ city in Anambra State. Nnewi is the second most profitable, and, if properly exploited, she has the potential to become a major city as profitable, perhaps more profitable than Onitsha. To coin a phrase, Nnewi is certainly a goose that lays, or should be laying lots of golden eggs for Anambra State. You are proclaimed to be an astute businessman, and for this, I am truly bewildered that you have not exhibited much business sense in this instance. You have abandoned your second (if not first) most profitable city to rot away. You do know that a rotten goose does not lay golden eggs; that the goose must be nurtured in order to lay healthy eggs. You do know that with adequate infrastructure, Nnewi industries would prosper and lay more golden eggs for the State. And, Your Excellency, you definitely do know that all this must start with passable roads in and around Nnewi!

Now, when an astute businessman ignores all this, then, it becomes pertinent to ask—why? Have Nnewi people wronged you in any form that we are not aware? If we have, we surely would love to hear about it, apologize for it, and make amends if possible. I would personally offer to come all the way from the USA any day to lead an ‘apology team’ to the State House. But if you have no grouse with Nnewi, then we call on you to give us our due respect in the scheme of things in Anambra. It does not make any business sense whatsoever, and you are not portrayed as a sensitive or responsive leader when small, relatively insignificant towns in Anambra State have good roads, and Nnewi roads are abandoned to rot into gullies and small hills. So, once again, I persist with the question—have we wronged you, Your Excellency?

This situation is even more worrisome when the Dim Emeka Ojukwu factor is brought into the equation. Beyond her industrial/ commercial status, Nnewi is the home of the Ikemba of Nnewi, Dim Emeka Ojukwu the legend; leader of the APGA political part under which you won your governorship mandate. It is common knowledge that, through his legendary political influence, this son of Nnewi was extremely instrumental in your election. One would think that the Ojukwu factor is enough to place Nnewi at the very top of your developmental priority list, and when this does not happened, then one wonders—why? Even if Dim Ojukwu is too modest and does not request it, Nnewi people, indeed, the entire world expects you to exhibit the sense of respect to honor Dim Ojukwu’s hometown with deserved developmental attention.

I was in Nnewi during my recent visit to Nigeria, and I truly wept! How Art The Mighty Fallen, I lamented! The entire Nkwo Nnewi area, the very center and commercial heartbeat of the city, or should I say town, is an eyesore! All the major roads are dilapidated and some are impossible to pass. The famous Nkwo Market is virtually inaccessible because most of the roads leading to it have turned into gullies. Remember this, Your Excellency—the Nkwo Market actually gave Nnewi the status of a goose that lays golden eggs. Also remember—a sick goose cannot lay any eggs!

Some Nnewi indigenes outside the shores of Nigeria, the USA in particular, have seriously discussed this matter. We are all shocked that Peter Obi, an astute business intellect actually sits back and allows his State’s second fattest goose to rot away. Rumors around town when I visited Nnewi had it that Coscharis Motors would love to site some arms of its automobile empire in Nnewi, if only there was infrastructural incentive. Nothing can sum up my lamentation better than this single demonstration that industrial giant sons of Nnewi are locating industries elsewhere, which they would rather locate in Nnewi and create jobs for their own brothers and sisters!

This petition is personal, but it is based on a consensus opinion of several Nnewi indigenes in Texas, where we have discussed the pitiful degeneration of our city/ town under your watch. I remember that one angry Nnewian suggested that we must seriously mobilize people and campaign against your re-election. Another guy informed him that this is your last term in office, which means that you do not need our votes any longer. But then, somebody else made another mature comment; we do not really have to campaign in order for you to feel the repercussions of this act. He perceived your neglect of Nnewi as a business failure to exploit the potential of a great ‘business product’ called Nnewi. He argued that it will always be on your public resume, and may affect you when you least expect it. You must admit that it does not look good, especially for a man that is proclaimed to be an astute businessman! Do reflect on it, Your Excellency!

Harry Agina writes from the USA

 


undemocratic discrimination in governance. My letter opened as follows:
“Your Excellency, it is very apparent that you have a grouse with Nnewi people; the
question is—why? What is your grouse, we humbly ask? What has Nnewi done, so
grievous that you have decided to forsake her so conspicuously? I write this open letter to
appeal to Your Excellency to forgive whatever it is that Nnewi people might have done to
you, if any, and give us our due respect and share in the scheme of things in the State of
Anambra.”
And, I went ahead to state some reasons for my lamentation, which included Peter Obi’s
*** (vindictive; in ingrate who rewarded Ojukwu’s support to his governorship; etc…).
Now, the man cannot even keep a pledge or promise that he made to Ojukwu, virtually on
his death bed. Obi is scheming to destroy APGA political party, contrary to his pledge to
Ojukwu to keep the flag of APGA flying…

Nnewi is the second most important city in Anambra State, next to Onitsha. Sorry, point
of correction—Nnewi is not really a city yet, but it is long overdue to become one, and
that is exactly the point of this letter. Nnewi has all the trappings of a major city, but you
have not deemed it necessary to elevate her to this rightful status with simple prerequisite
infrastructural development. Have you been to Nnewi lately, and if you have, are you
proud of what you saw? Indeed, Nnewi is an eyesore under your watch; quite a
disgraceful sight, Your Excellency!
We are talking about the second most important city of your State, for Chrissakes! As a
matter of fact, the assessment that Onitsha is more commercially/ industrially important
than Nnewi is not a consensus. Some people disagree; they are of the view that Nnewi is
more important. Besides the common proclamation that Nnewi is the “headquarters” of
automobile spare parts market throughout West Africa, she is the home of numerous
trendsetting industries. The Innoson Group of companies in Nnewi, for instace, has gone
beyond mere assembly, to the actual manufacture of various forms of motor
vehicles––cars, trucks, buses and motor cycles. Nnewi is also the home of Coscharis
Motors; the Cento Group of Industries; the Chikason Group of Industries; Cutix Cable
Industry; Ibeto Group of Companies, to name just the few.
Your Excellency, let’s talk business sense here, shall we! To a businessman, Onitsha is
the most ‘profitable’ city in Anambra State. Nnewi is the second most profitable, and, if
properly exploited, she has the potential to become a major city as profitable, perhaps
more profitable than Onitsha. To coin a phrase, Nnewi is certainly a goose that lays, or
should be laying lots of golden eggs for Anambra State. You are proclaimed to be an
astute businessman, and for this, I am truly bewildered that you have not exhibited much
business sense in this instance. You have abandoned your second (if not first) most

profitable city to rot away. You do know that a rotten goose does not lay golden eggs;
that the goose must be nurtured in order to lay healthy eggs. You do know that with
adequate infrastructure, Nnewi industries would prosper and lay more golden eggs for the
State. And, Your Excellency, you definitely do know that all this must start with passable
roads in and around Nnewi!
Now, when an astute businessman ignores all this, then, it becomes pertinent to
ask—why? Have Nnewi people wronged you in any form that we are not aware? If we
have, we surely would love to hear about it, apologize for it, and make amends if
possible. I would personally offer to come all the way from the USA any day to lead an
‘apology team’ to the State House. But if you have no grouse with Nnewi, then we call
on you to give us our due respect in the scheme of things in Anambra. It does not make
any business sense whatsoever, and you are not portrayed as a sensitive or responsive
leader when small, relatively insignificant towns in Anambra State have good roads, and
Nnewi roads are abandoned to rot into gullies and small hills. So, once again, I persist
with the question—have we wronged you, Your Excellency?
This situation is even more worrisome when the Dim Emeka Ojukwu factor is brought
into the equation. Beyond her industrial/ commercial status, Nnewi is the home of the
Ikemba of Nnewi, Dim Emeka Ojukwu the legend; leader of the APGA political part
under which you won your governorship mandate. It is common knowledge that, through
his legendary political influence, this son of Nnewi was extremely instrumental in your
election. One would think that the Ojukwu factor is enough to place Nnewi at the very
top of your developmental priority list, and when this does not happened, then one
wonders—why? Even if Dim Ojukwu is too modest and does not request it, Nnewi
people, indeed, the entire world expects you to exhibit the sense of respect to honor Dim
Ojukwu’s hometown with deserved developmental attention.
I was in Nnewi during my recent visit to Nigeria, and I truly wept! How Art The Mighty
Fallen, I lamented! The entire Nkwo Nnewi area, the very center and commercial
heartbeat of the city, or should I say town, is an eyesore! All the major roads are
dilapidated and some are impossible to pass. The famous Nkwo Market is virtually
inaccessible because most of the roads leading to it have turned into gullies. Remember
this, Your Excellency—the Nkwo Market actually gave Nnewi the status of a goose that
lays golden eggs. Also remember—a sick goose cannot lay any eggs!
Some Nnewi indigenes outside the shores of Nigeria, the USA in particular, have
seriously discussed this matter. We are all shocked that Peter Obi, an astute business
intellect actually sits back and allows his State’s second fattest goose to rot away.
Rumors around town when I visited Nnewi had it that Coscharis Motors would love to
site some arms of its automobile empire in Nnewi, if only there was infrastructural
incentive. Nothing can sum up my lamentation better than this single demonstration that
industrial giant sons of Nnewi are locating industries elsewhere, which they would rather
locate in Nnewi and create jobs for their own brothers and sisters!

This petition is personal, but it is based on a consensus opinion of several Nnewi
indigenes in Texas, where we have discussed the pitiful degeneration of our city/ town
under your watch. I remember that one angry Nnewian suggested that we must seriously
mobilize people and campaign against your re-election. Another guy informed him that
this is your last term in office, which means that you do not need our votes any longer.
But then, somebody else made another mature comment; we do not really have to
campaign in order for you to feel the repercussions of this act. He perceived your neglect
of Nnewi as a business failure to exploit the potential of a great ‘business product’ called
Nnewi. He argued that it will always be on your public resume, and may affect you when
you least expect it. You must admit that it does not look good, especially for a man that is
proclaimed to be an astute businessman! Do reflect on it, Your Excellency!
Harry Agina writes from the USA harryagina@yahoo.com
Visit http://www.FunkyPastors.com ; http://www.FunkyPastors.blogspot.com ;
http://twitter.com/FunkyPastors & http://NoBullshitting.blogspot.com for more of my
views on a variety of social issues.

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