One of the biggest myths in present day politics is that propaganda helps sell a candidate. In these climes, it’s easy to understand why this fallacy persists: the electorate in these parts are assumed to be gullible. So a large mix of propaganda as well as an appeal to the histrionics will sway the votes to any candidate, even if it is a drunken never do well.
Truth however holds that with the increase in the number of Nigerians who happen to be graduates as well as the increased access of our youths to information, the value of propaganda to any campaign, are , as often as not , disconnected from the success any candidate intends to make in any elections.
As a matter of fact, the electorate punishes candidates who resort to the use of propaganda as against those who do not dwell on campaign issues which is largely the real electoral value.
I can cite a number of examples, however, here’s a particularly striking one: In the 2015 elections, while the APC, then the opposition party concentrated largely on issues, the then ruling party in the PDP harped more on propaganda: on the phony islamisation of Nigeria, on whether Buhari had a school certificate or not. They did this with the thinking that 2015 was 2011, they thought wrong!
2015 elections illustrate such truth: Electoral victories or one’s electoral value are the product of performance, track record and a balance of issues , while propaganda erodes such values.
Sadly, the Obiano administration has largely failed to heed such wisdom acting much like an old dog that you cannot teach new tricks.
The Obiano administration haven frittered away the opportunities it had to leave a legacy as well as earn the mandate of Ndi Anambra for a second term has like the children of Israel in the biblical days turned its face to the gods of propaganda to help save Obiano from the impending defeat that stares him in the face.
Lies, twisted facts, fables that largely best, tales by moonlight, the propaganda machinery of the Willie Obiano administration has earned itself immense notoriety, earning itself knocks in the public sphere! It’s that bad, so bad that when the slogan “Willie Is Working ” is blared, Anambrarians immediately interject that it’s “walking” and not working!
The Obiano administration exudes various kinds of oasis as its development strides but honestly all we see are mirages. Examples abound!
This government prides itself as a leader in the agricultural sector, it boasts of creating many feats in that sector, sadly these are half-truths if not outright lies. It claims it is exporting yams, ugu and bitter leaf, yet there is little or no evidence to support such claims.
Anambra rice is like the line in Mark Twain’ s poem, it is alleged to be everywhere, but there is none to buy.
Faced with the widespread disaffection, his aides attempted to save some face, they ended up embarrassing the government some more, when one appeared with an ugu plant in the midst of yam tendrils!
Moving away from the agricultural sector, let us berth on the state’s quality of infrastructure.
Asides the thirty five roads the governor concentrated and built in his hometown of Aguleri, (Talk of Nepotism and Obiano becomes a worthy poster boy) the eyesores of the three wobbly fly- overs and the bridge to nowhere at Iyiora , this administration of his is yet to complete not to talk of starting any new road projects.
Road projects started by his predecessor,
Mr. Peter Obi such as
Reconstruction of Abube Square Nando- Afor – Igbariam(Additional Road Spur to Nkwo Nando Square), the
Construction of Abba – Ifitedunu Road, Njikoka/Dunukofia LGA ,
Udeaja Junction- Affia Nkwo Market – Urezi Road, Ozubulu, Ekwusigo LGA,
Omor – Umumbo Road Ayamelum Local Government Area,
Access Road to Civil Servants Housing Estate,Isiagu,
Ozzu -Umunachi Road,
Ugwunwasike – Azu Ogbunike – Amawa – Osile – Ifite – Umueri – St Monica – College
Amansea – Ndiukwuenu – Okpeze- Amaeteiti- Awgbu Road Phase 1,
Amansea – Ndiukwuenu – Okpeze- Amaeteiti- Awgbu Road and bridge,
Access Road to AUSCO farms Ltd Agu – Awka,
Nteje- Umunya Road,
Enugu/ Anambra State Boundary- Agu Awka Road,
Amawbia – Amansea Federal Road,
Construction of Jetty/ Roads within the Naval Base and Roads Between Atani Roads.
Reconstruction of Anambra State Integrated Livestock Farm Nkwelle Ezunaka, construction of Achina-Oneh- Agbudu –Ogboji, my God! I can go on and on but for space and time will stop here.
What is however baffling is the fact that the government has so degenerated into the theatrics of the absurd, that it now claims roads started and finished by its predecessor.
Take for example the Ideani-Uke- Umeoji roads and Igbariam -Nando roads were started and finished by Obi, yet the Obiano administration has claimed them as its projects.
Is it education, where the state has lost its place and is struggling to remain within the first ten position or is it healthcare where the lumpen proletariat now prefer the services of roadside chemists and native doctors than our general hospitals and primary health care clinics?
Where births of new born babies are handled with lanterns because these hospitals cannot afford fuel? Where maternal mortality rates are at its highest in the history of the state .
What is therefore bafffling is not the aspiration of Obiano for a second term, it’s his right as a citizen of the state, but the amount of propaganda deployed by his handlers to earn him such: vile as well as insalubrious reminds one of the dark days in Anambra, leaving a taste of bile in ones mouth.
Thankfully, Ndi Anambra are wiser than they were four years ago, it is my belief that come what may, the people will vote with a mind not receptive to lies or the appropriated images of heroes who would shudder at the sight of their image next to Obiano.
Change is coming!
Igboeli Arinze Writes From Awka
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