The Deputy Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives and Member representing Bende federal constituency in Abia state, Rt. Hon Benjamin Okezie Kalu


Why the fifth columnists are after him

By Dr Cosmos Ndukwe.

I was at Bende to witness the Grand Civic Reception in honour of our illustrious son Rt. Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu, Deputy Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives. The well attended event also climaxed into the unveiling of what could be described as one of the most thoughtful projects yet by a Legislator in the South East: Peace in the South East Project (PISE – P), the brainchild of wisdom, patriotism, progressiveness and intentional development.

While this piece is not about the core advantages of galvanising support to ensure that peace, which had long eluded the South East, returns, I want to serve notice to those fifth columnists, urchins, enemies of progress who are gathering to pull Ben Kalu, the South East rising star, down. They are gathering, fanning the embers of disunity, making a mountain out of a molehill, attempting to use propaganda to achieve what they couldn’t use the court to achieve.

There is no sane Igbo man who would honestly view Ben Kalu’s trajectory with disdain. It is therefore the height of irresponsibility for anybody at this time to tell us about disparities in names used by Ben Kalu as reason we should throw away our golden boy, poster boy of Bende, the Ijele of the South East, Ben Kalu. What is there in a name and how does that discredit the well thought out programme of reaching out to relevant stakeholders, galvanising support and initiating deliberate attempts aimed at ensuring that those in Mbano sleep with their eyes closed, those in Enugu stop living in fear, our kiths in Isuikwuato/Umunneochi return home without fear of any criminal attacks, those in Orlu go about their legitimate businesses without long days of sitting – at – home, returning the glory of Okigwe and Arondizuogu axis? I ask again, how does the names on the Certiticates being used by Ben Kalu affect the several benefits already accruing from the awareness that Igbos can come together to circumvent what is about being the deadliest security onslaught on AlaIgbo?

Talking about whether Ben Kalu is Okezie or Osisiogu, I had a similar circumstance. It is not uncommon to see honest and appreciative young persons taking up names of either their foster parents or guardians. Once, the little girl who lived with us had gone for enrollment in school. When she was asked her name, she mentioned Ebere Cosmos instead of Ebere Chibueze that was on her birth certificate. Yes! If not for the quick intervention of my wife and She was registered as Ebere Cosmos bringing the first disparity in her name. Her reason was very simple! The father she knows is Cosmos Ndukwe who took her in and had been catering for her. Of course her First School Leaving Certifiate (FSLC) bears EBERE CHIBUEZE while her Secondary School (Junior and Senior) Certificates bear EBERE COSMOS. I am also aware that upon enrollment into the University, she reverted to her original name of EBERE CHIBUEZE and upon marriage changed her name to that of her husband. How does this innocent trajectory paint the girl with the wicked brush of evil? How does this make her one not to be trusted or appreciated for whatever positive steps she is taking in life. Who in Bende does not know Dr. Osisiogu and his relationship with little Ben Kalu at the time? Dr. Osisiogu was visibly active in Ben’s life and it was natural that Ben didn’t think twice taking up his name. If Ben reverts to his original name at some point history reveals it to him, how does that make him an evil man?

Those fifth columnists who are after Ben are those who paint every effort by a leader with the sentimental brush of politics. They are those who feel intimidated by the rising profile of a young man who bears that extraordinary mark of grace. While these enemies of progress see competition in Ben, we see progress, development and cooperative success in Ben Kalu. We do not even know the relationship between seeking for peace and bearing different names. It is even more disheartening when one realises that those recruiting us to hate Ben are those whose communities are worse hit by the South East insecurity Tsunami which Ben is working so hard to solve.

In one of their propaganda series, they tried so hard to pitch Ben Kalu against Senator Orji Uzor Kalu and other notable Igbo Leaders like Senator Hope Uzodinma. In another failed twist, they also made up an imaginary feud between Ben and Dr. Alex Otti on one hand and Senator Hope Uzodinma on another hand. One would ask: to what purpose? A day before the Bende Grand Civic Reception in honour of Rt. Hon. Ben Kalu, Deputy Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives, the Abia State Governor, Dr. Otti had rolled the drums to honour the IJELE, a leader that has the interest of his people at heart. At the event in Bende, Senator Hope Uzodinma demonstrated his total support, defying those who benefit from crisis, those whose stock in trade is planting the seed of discord.

Ben Kalu is the new face of South East leadership. Apart from his positive youthfulness, he is deserving of the trust he is seeking. Ben is worthy of our support. We should not let those who are into political merchandising rock this our smooth sailing boat called Ben Kalu. Peace is inevitable. The only person who would be a cog in the wheel of the Ben Kalu PISE P project is the chartered politician who takes delight in pulling down excellent initiatives, it is the spentforce who is bereft of ideas and thinks others are too, it is the unapologetic enemy of progress who wants to recruit us to hate our emerging IJELE, who had been ordained by God to direct a new and progressive leadership in Igbo land.

Let peace reign. Let us support our own Rt Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu, the Deputy Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives and an illustrious son of Igbo Land.

Written by Dr. Cosmos Ndukwe
2023 Presidential Aspirant
People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

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