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IMSU VC and the Battle for Equity

| January 14, 2014 | 4 Comments
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According to the philosopher Aesop in one of his tables, he highlighted a story on the rogue and the oracle thus, “A rogue laid a wager that he would prove the oracle at Delphi to be untrustworthy by procuring from it a false reply to an inquiry by himself. So he went to the temple on the appointed day with a small bird in his hand, which he concealed under the folds of his cloak, and asked whether what he held in his hand were alive or dead. If the oracle said dead; he meant to produce the bird alive, if the reply was alive; he intended to wring its neck and show it to be dead. But the oracle was one too many for him, for the answer he got was this: stranger, whether the thing that you hold in your hand be alive or dead is a matter that depends entirely on your own will”.

Following the fable above, one begins to wonder why the rogue wanted to try and vilify the great oracle of Delphi; one thing comes into one’s mind, the rogue wanted to discredit the oracle not knowing that the oracle was the manifestation of esoteric and exoteric wisdom. The oracle of Delphi knowing the state of mind of the rogue left the entire answer on his hands, meaning that whatever he wanted was the answer.

The point here is whether we say anything or not, Gov. Okorocha has the final say and he will act according to the dictates of his mind because he is not easily influenced by advice no matter the source. He does what he wants to do. Therefore, on the issue of substantive Chancellorship of Imo State University, I would borrow the philosophy of the Oracle of Delphi by inferring that “whether the thing you hold in your hand be alive or dead is a matter that depends entirely on your own will.” Yes, it depends entirely on the will of Gov. Okorocha to appoint or approve anyone he considers fits.

But be informed that if we keep quiet, posterity will judge all of us hence I have decided to pick up my pen to inform my generation the need to do it the right way in line with the principles of equity and social justice. If nobody does anything about something, everything will remain as it is even a state of stigma and opprobrium. Therefore one must speak out!

Just to refresh your memory your Excellency, if you have forgotten. Since the inception of the Imo State University without prejudice, the appointment of the Vice-Chancellor has only favoured two geo-political zones (Okigwe and Orlu) leaving Owerri zone completely. Whereas there are three geo-political zones that make up Imo State Owerri, Okigwe and Orlu.

I am from Orlu zone but the truth must be said. In the words of Shakespeare, “What is a stronger breastplate than a heart unstained” I am aware that a brave man risks his life, but not his conscience. For Martin Luther, “It is both hazardous and dishonorable for a man to act contrary to the dictates of conscience” I am alive because my conscience lives in me and I am highly persuaded by it to speak the truth even when it does not favour me.

The above informs why I was the main guest speaker in 2013 Imo Political Summit with the team “Restoring Imo Chatter of Equity” organized by Imo State holders forum, where I overtly advocated for the restoration of Imo Political charter of equity insisting that political power should be shifted to Owerri zone in line with the primordial charter of equity in 2015. It should be highlighted and emphasized here that anything that is meant for the collective interest and benefit of Imo State should be distributed to the three geo-political zones equally. No zone should be neglected. Any neglect to any zone will amount to antithesis to the doctrine of equity, justice and fair play. Such neglect would breed confusion and disagreement in all ramifications.

Gov. Rochas Okorocha should resist any temptation aimed at appointing IMSU VC from either Orlu or Okigwe zone as these zones have all benefited from other governments, he should appoint a substantive Vice Chancellor from Owerri zone.

As the sandwich Islander believes that the strength and weakness of the enemy he kills passes into him, so we gain the strength of the temptation we resist. If Okorocha wants to gain the strength of Owerri people, he should resist the temptation staring at his face now, wanting him to appoint Orlu or Okigwe man or woman to the post of IMSU V.C.  If our governor should listen to this single voice of reason, he will win many political friends that he has lost for about three years now. Gov. Okorocha, those around you may not tell you this because of their selfish interest but if you want to fail, go on with your politics of tribalism but if you desire to succeed, then listen to the silent voice of equity and fair play oozing  out of this page.

For the purposes of refreshing your memory, the first civilian governor of Imo State Chief Sam Mbakwe appointed Prof. M.J.C. Echeruo from Okigwe zone as the Vice Chancellor of Imo State University. Gov. Achike Udenwa appointed Prof. A.G. Anwuka and Prof. C. Okonkwo all from Orlu zone. During Gov. Ikedi Ohakim tenure, he willingly appointed and confirmed his fellow Okigwe man Prof. Osy Nwebo as IMSU substantive V.C. we are not forgetting the appointment of Prof. T.O.C. Ndubuizu an Orlu man as Vice-Chancellor by an Owerri Governor Chief Evan Enwerem.

The foregoing analysis simply portrays a high level of injustice, manipulation, vilification, deprivation and negation of Owerri zone in the distribution and zonal sharing of Vice-Chancellorship of Imo State University. Since the inception of Imo State University an Owerri person has not smelt the seat of Vice-Chancellor of this great institution till date.

Gov. Okorocha should look at the past records with a strong aim of correcting this injustice and anomaly hence there are well qualified professors from Owerri zone that are already on the race. It is a pity already that the present composition of the Governing Council of Imo State University is made up of only one person from Owerri zone and this body plays vital role in the selection of the vice-chancellor, which ultimately implies that an Owerri person is already schemed out, this is where Chief Rochas Okorocha’s conscience comes into play. After all, it was Owerri zone that gave him massive vote that gave him victory in 2011; so if he decides to bite the finger that fed him as usual, patriots like us would not be amazed at all.

I have no selfish interest in this matter neither do I have any candidate but I am saying this because what is good and lawful for one with conscience, is good for all. Gov. Okorocha should use this opportunity to pick a qualified candidate from Owerri zone as the next substantive vice-chancellor of Imo State University, not minding the pressure on him from Orlu and Okigwe zone. People are free to scheme but do the right thing at least for once so that your wrongs could be forgiven.

I wish to state finally here like the oracle of Delphi that I have spoken my mind but “whether the thing that you hold in your hand be alive or dead is a matter that depends entirely on your own will”.

Prof Nathan Protus Uzorma
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