Orubebe: What Manner Of Elder? | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Orubebe: What Manner Of Elder?

Posted: Sep 12, 2015 at 12:16 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Former Minister of Niger Delta Development, Godsday Orubebe, a church Elder, has been fighting what some public commentators see as a proxy fight. Of all the Honourable Ministers that served in the immediate past government of Dr. Ebele Goodluck Jonathan, he seems to be the only one who has chosen to fight dirty for his master, using all manner of weapons, conventional and unconventional! As an Elder in the temple of God, one would have expected him to temper his language in the face of any provocation. For him to have descended so low as to describe God’s own image as “ugly”, to say the least, is unbecoming of a true servant of the living God. More so, when He has said that everything He created is beautiful. Millions of Orubebe cannot create any living being let alone man with breath.

This is why we must appreciate God’s work rather than condemning it. Adams Oshiomhole is not a robot, he is beautifully created by God, and for Elder Orubebe, in the face of whatever provocation to describe the governor as “ugly” as widely published in the media, is uncharitable and arrogant condemnation of God’s work. But does he still go to church and mount the pulpit for ministration? What would he tell his congregation? What would he tell those who come to him for prayers and counselling? What would he be telling his children at home about using foul language, especially against God’s creation, and about keeping malice? These are some of the questions that keep cropping up in my mind since I read the piece in the media. I am this bothered because I hear that Orubebe is a minister of God. I believe he has to go on his knees and ask for God’s forgiveness after making peace with Oshiomhole. However, I am not judging him because I am not worthy to do so.

   But I don’t think Nigerians will be surprised by the uncouth outburst of this supposed man of God, given his antecedent, especially in the recent past. This is a man, on his own right, that is expected to be an elder statesman but who chose to display brazen un-statesmanship in the full glare of the world in his attempt, maybe, to do the bidding of his masters. He threw caution to the wind and danced naked in the market square to the embarrassment of well-meaning Nigerians including those in the diaspora! He attempted to scuttle our hard fought democracy just as the final results of the April 11 presidential election were being announced by the electoral umpires. The bewildered nation and, of course, the anxious world were shocked by the behaviour of this former minster. While some saw it as a nut case, others thought it was simply a case of a sinking man who was desperate to hold on to any straw for survival. But must the entire country of over 160 million people sink with him in his desperation? Given the failed coup, Orubebe should have considered himself a political outcast and hide his face in shame or go into self-exile. Exile? That is probably an understatement because no country will be willing to grant him entry visa, especially when the acclaimed policeman of the world, the United States of America had labelled him a persona non grata for being an enemy of democracy. For committing that political hara-kiri, I believe this Elder should be charged with treason and tried accordingly, following due process of the law in the spirit of CHANGE. Lucky Orubebe! He still has the guts to talk because he is walking around a free man despite his political atrocities against his people and his fatherland. If GMB wants to be vindictive, he would ask the relevant state agencies to prepared charges against him under relevant laws of our land. But this is CHANGE era. As a fellow Niger Deltan, Elder statesman and former Federal Minster of Information, Edwin Clark, probably saw what most Nigerians did not see then when he vowed that Orubebe would never go near the Delta State House. He had to scuttle the ambition of Orubebe to become the state governor. He did that in the interest of the people and the state. Today, Delta is far better for it.

Now, the alleged offence of Oshiomhole. He dared to let Nigerians know the amount the immediate past administration spent on the East-West Road which is still far from completion. Orubebe served in that government as the minister in charge of the Niger Delta Region and the all-important road, which has suffered so much neglect, was under his watch. Oshiomhole, in his usual style, had revealed that so much money was put into the road under his watch without much impact. As a free born and leader of the Niger Delta, Oshiomhole is concerned that the people of the region are suffering due to the neglect of the road despite the billions of naira that have gone into it. The governor painfully expressed his worry, given the fact that one of the bona fide sons of the region, Goodluck Jonathan, spent six years in the Presidency, holding the yam and the knife, aside the fact that Orubebe, also an authentic son of the region, was minister in charge of Niger Delta, and there’s nothing concrete to show for it. As a leader of the region and current chairman of the BRACE States, I want to believe that Oshiomhole’s outburst was more out of frustration and, to some extent, disappointment rather than mere attack on his fellow regional brothers for cheap popularity. This is why he deserves commendation rather than condemnation for his courage to speak out.