Opinion: The Austin Okai I Know by Salihu Adam Jiddah

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Let me start by expressing my joy and disappointment on this unnecessary action.
My joy is that Okai was arrested not by unknown gunmen so that’s good enough and my disappointment is from a government who is so naive to navigate a simple political contour.
Clearly, I have divergent of opinion from Austin on so many issues, I have my reservations to his political views even as a civil servant I have advised him on how to go about politics but on his views, either right or wrong he has right to it. When I learned about his arrest and the rumour that the arrest was carried out by Kogi state govt., I laughed in pains. I wonder why a serious govt would go as low as attempting to silent opposition through arrest or intimidation. What government should do to silent opposition is to create wealth of opportunity amongst the populace, create a situation of welfare economy where people would feel secure. Create trust and build bridges.
From the first time Yahaya Bello came in, he ought to have known that he is ridding on a horse trained and fed by another man. He out to have known that the owner of the horse had supporters, followers and even well wishers. Bello had the greatest opportunity to popularise him self and dominate the political terrane but he seems to be on the other side. From appointments to utterances, one could clearly see a jittery govt afraid of taking vibrant developmental decisions for and with the people.
On many occasions I have registered my disappointment on some excesses of Austin in the way and manner he reacts to issues. I have ¬†opposed him even on this platform and challenged him on a number of his I’ll informed opinion but I see no reason why govt if possible would not build a supporting formation to express the right side of govt instead of arresting a formation that tends to oppose it. It is lugubrious and disheartening so much that one may wonder if this government has political advisers at all.
Government must be aware that we are in democracy and the right to opinion lies with individuals and that their effort to silent them will be a monumental  waste of time, energy and our limited allocation that can not carter for us obviously.
Recently, I have read a post by Austin about the death of a civil servant, although as a Muslim I belief in predestination but if government is playing innocence on the suffering of the people, a situation created by the govt itself through the historic and unending screening exercise and even the tension in the mind of these civil servant most of whom are very old, then something is very wrong. It goes further to show how alien the govt is from the people.
Point blank, Kogi state is having a bad time and government must think well not to take the advises of sugarcoated politicians who are looking for what to get. They must look for solutions to the hardship and sufferings of the people rather than spending resources on arresting individuals who wish to express their opinion.
My prayer: Release Austin Usman Okai unconditionally, he is a citizen of kogi state and has right to his opinion. If his lamentations are targeted at creating falsehood, clarify the falsehood through numerous commissioners and SA’s that you have. Intimidating anyone for airing his opinion will only reduce your already tainted popularity.
The word for the wise is enough.
– Salihu Adam Jiddah
Kogi Liberation Movement.

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