Gov. Otti, Ikpeazu’s Distraction, Enyimba And Us

By Victor Enyinnaya on June 19, 2023

You see, I have to bow to the intensive pressure/requests by the numerous readers of this soar away weekly column that I should fully return to base and leave their deceitful, half-truth e.t.c Nigerian politics for them.

This columnist has been neck deep in writing, analyzing, commenting strictly and copiously on sports week in week out before though.

It looks as if the hen is home to roost. The readers were also emotional while trying to win me back to sports beat outside of the political beat this column has been in shortly after that dubious, deceitful, daylight robbery that was February 25, Presidential election.

Many thumbed up our courage in that regard.  However, I agreed and promised the readers that we will be doing it like before now where we interchange.

This week we are back and I write start with Enyimba International FC of Aba. The resilient team from that Eastern part of the country that showed lots of clout during the recently concluded 2022/23 NPFL play-offs held in Lagos.  

They started the pack in a game against Remo Stars. The game ended 2-2, then the second one against then all conquering Bendel Insurance of Benin and the game also ended in draw game.

Least I forget, after the Remo Stars game, I interviewed ex- international Lawrence Ukaegbu  a.k.a Danjuma in his playing days who emphatically told Daily Sports that Enyimba played well in this first match and would keep progressing despite the fact that the fan ordinarily ought to have wrapped up the game. 

As a reporter of many decades, inside me I disagreed with him. Note that Ukaegbu is one of the technical officials in the team’s crew. I did the story the way he spoke because my view remains irrelevant.

Until the third match against Lobi Stars it won 1-0, there came that glimmer of hope.  Let me be honest with you, it was a hard won glory or if you like hard earned victory.  I was in the final day of the championship where the Aba based side took on smoking Rivers United side.

As a veteran of many football overages, I was as usual in Media Tribune with other colleagues.

Then the hour of battle of wits and brawns came supremacy between former champions, Enyimba and then defending kings Rivers United. The two teams came out and the game began.

Let me confess that even as a reporter, I was on my edge before the match kicked-off because of the intimidating posture Rivers United team always forcefully imposes on its opponents, it scared me and to my surprise the Enyimba team I saw overcame the overconfident Rivers United team.

A bold, strong, determined, focus and businesslike Aba squad went straight pronto rattled their day’s opponent. It gingered the supporters of the former CAF Champions League kings.  In short, Enyimba did not keep anybody in doubt that it meant business and held the Rivers State strong team ball for ball, attack for attack and defence for defence.  

It was a balanced game that produced a goal apiece and the Aba warlords won the league 2023 on superior goal aggregate.  The game brought the best of the players, the bench of both teams and the officiating officials.

The play-offs gave me some inclinations why the just concluded NPL witnessed enduringly many away wins. Without much ado, the NPL partners GTI has set the tone accordingly.  The GTI magic on the league last season gave the leeway of what is to be expected. GTI has also paid the winning team; Enyimba the N100, 000,000 winner takes all-star prize cash.

It is kudos to GTI and this corporate citizen has shown lots of gritty and readiness to grow the potentially and obviously viable and valuable football business in the country.

One of the main thrust of using this Enyimba International FC reckoning come back to club continental football is to reveal to you dear readers, the extent former Governor Okezie Ikpeazu vandalized Abia State and left the supposedly wealthy State into bankruptcy.

It was sad to note that Enyimba FC team would have missed out from the recently concluded NPFL pay-offs because of lack of funds.   

Dailysports gathered that it took the deep sporting spirit of Governor Alex Otti’s new government to wholly rally round and sourced for funds that enabled the team came to Lagos for the championship.  It remains heart rendering and curious but true of what is Abia State under the watch of lame duck administration of Okezie Ikpeazu.  He bungled the State and left it in penury.  That blew my heart that Enyimba players and their officials were owed like other workers in the State.

Little wonder therefore that the team was playing below expectations in the abridged league which the side profusely struggled to qualify from its group for the recently concluded play-offs. Owing of workers’ salaries was the legacy Okezie Ikpeazu left in Abia State, sadly, the same shameless Okezie Ikpeazu and his looters follower of the State are all over the media dishing out half-truths on the State of finance in Abia.  Both Okezie Ikpeazu and his tale bearers are lying on how much he handed over to the new government and the new government has come out boldly to deny all comedies being played out by Okezie Ikpeazu.

Who does not know that Okezie was a low performer in his eight years of misrule in Abia State? He used Abia State funds for his private investment abroad including choice building in United Arab Emirates (UAE) otherwise known as Dubai There are numerous allegations including his gift of N1m to each woman//girl he went out with which it was further alleged prompted a group of Ngwa women to wax a song “Ometula gi” literarily has he done it to you?.

 Which one do we Abians talk and which one do we not mention all in worst government since the State was created. Okezie Ikpeazu suppressed the government of Senator T.A Orji as worst that left the State in ruins.   

That is the lot of the State. My take on this is Governor Otti must not crave into this Okezie Ikpeazu and his cohort’s blackmail. It is in public domain he looted Abia State. He left empty state riddled with debts roundly.

As his surname implies, he is a bad news.  He should be probed because he messed up the state badly.  For instance nothing works in the State?

While I acknowledged that Nigerian politicians are the same allover however, Otti must not abandon the good will that brought him to power and so democratic dividends must go round the local governments in the State. He must avoid lopsidedness in appointments while he starves others of such. He must not give room for these looters of the state to have mouth to say rubbish, head or tail; they will definite say something in the name of opposition.

For this columnist and the numerous readers, the Governor has started well. He encouraged Enyimba to bring home the Nigeria Premier League glittering diadem, the first and best amongst the rest. He spoke to the lads one after another few hours to the kick-off of the game hence the deep spirit with which the Peoples Elephant took their devastating opponents headlong and triumphed at the end of the day.

Enyimba needs new goal oriented players in all departments. The team needed brand new bus. However Anyansi Agwu knows best how to go about getting first rate players who would withstand the fire and heat of CAF Champions League.

We will anchor here. Keep shooting hard till next week. Meanwhile we wait!!



Source Daily Sports Nigeria

Posted June 19, 2023


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