Let us not go into how Kogi state was carved out of Kwara and Benue States. That detail may not be very necessary for the issue at hand. If you want to know why Kogi is the most backward of all states among mates, ask the people; their voting pattern and how they present candidates for electoral offices, will produce a vivid answer.
On figuring out the answer, please be kind to the people: pray that they will help themselves at this particular time, because, heavens have been so good to these people.
Kogi state is bordered by Nassawara to the northeast; Benue to the east; Enugu, Anambra, and Delta to the south; Ondo, Ekiti, and Kwara to the west; and Niger to the north, including the FCT. No other state in Nigeria shares this peculiarity. This development tells a layman of the economic advantage a state with this rich socio cultural advantage stands.
There are many ethnic groups in Kogi state. Igala people dominate east of the Niger, while the Ebira occupy the centre, and Okun Yoruba live west. Other notable ethnic groups include: Bassa, Nupe, Oworo, Ogori/ Magongo and shards of other groups.
Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy in Kogi state. Major crops grown include yam, cassava, rice, sorghum, beans, corn, cotton, cocoa and coffee. The people also engage in large scale fishing. Nigeria’s largest known deposit of iron ore is found in Kogi state: Ajaokuta and Itakpe. Marble is quarried at Jakura, northwest of Lokoja the state capital. Lokoja, beautifully situated on the west bank of the Niger River, is connected by road to Abuja the Federal Capital city of Nigeria, and southwestward to Benin City, a socio cultural giant enclave in the world.
There is more to Kogi than this introductory verso. Hope you know that one of the world’s largest cement deposits is found in Kogi state, hosted by a community called Obajana. It took an Aliko Dangote to make the community relevant. Please make your own research to know why Ajaokuta has remained moribund.
Why this piece?
The upcoming election is designed by providence to be a watershed in Kogi State. I like to tag it “Last Chance Against One Chance”. Failure to kick Yahaya Bello out through the ballot will cost the people another 35 years to recover.
The man Yahaya Bello was projected as a riddle that the Confluence State is no harbour for political godfatherism. His coming was unprecedented, unannounced and unmerited. Nature and, if you like, providence made his coming easy and possible. This youth was supposed to be a gateway, but power drunkeness kee Yeye Bello.
This young man flogged the elderly, widows, orphans and young ones with scorpions; even as he joyfully enjoyed a cosy ride with the powers that be. He would rather be in Aso Villa as an unknown son of Baba than sit at the Lugard House to deliberate on how to make life better for his people.
From Education to Agriculture and Healthcare, the people of Kogi state have suffered lack and loss in the hand of Yahaya Bello. He is filled with bailout money and Paris Club refund, so, who cares if some persons are famished?
If what obtains in the Ashanti region of Ghana also applies here, yours truly would have proudly claimed indigenship of Kogi State. Mother is from the central part of the state, while Father hails from Ondo North. Despite this rather disadvantageous heritage, one still feels more rooted in Kogi, a state of Professors, Technocrats and Thinkers.
Kogites, November 16, 2019 is the day to take back your state from Yahaya Bello, an abuser of platter-of-gold opportunity. This boy is unfit, reckless, wicked and prodigal. Vote him out! Take your destiny into your hands as you go. Prepare your minds both physically and spiritually. As you cast your votes, remember those who have died of hunger, those who cannot pay their medical bills, remember the orphans and widows, those who resorted to suicide.
Remember the good citizens who have been driven into exile by the brutal forces of Yahaya Bello.
Bello is to Kogi state what Idi Amin was to Uganda. He has wasted so much state funds on electioneering campaign and recruitment of thugs after employing a kangaroo impeachment measure to unseat his deputy, Simon Achuba who blew the wind to expose his anus to the whole world. Kogi people, think and get it right. Yahaya Bello is too prodigal to contribute meaningfully to your state.
Bola Tinubu, Adams Oshiomhole, Yemi Osinbajo, even James Faleke, they all have nothing to lose, whichever way Kogi goes. Use the ballot to turn their eight leprous fingers of mockery to their own shame. They must be made to hide their fingers after this election.
Kogites, organize yourselves, motivate one another, pray and vote out Yahaya Bello. May you be highly favoured.
I close with the words of Alan Moore, “The people shouldn’t be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people”.
– Leke Onipe Ilori, an adventurer and farmer.