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Soludo, Arthur Eze and the limits of mercantilist politics



Soludo, Arthur Eze and other southeastern politicians with eyes for self-serving politics can continue their mercantilist agenda without dragging down the southeast.

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By Emeka Alex Duru

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The antics of Anambra State Governor Professor Charles Soludo and oil businessman Arthur Eze in rejecting the Labor Party (LP) standard bearer, Peter Obi’s 2023 presidential bid, can only be appreciated from the context of the American domestic (home). slave whose interest was more in keeping his job, even in extreme conditions of dehumanization.

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In the history of slavery in America, there were the domestic slaves and the plantation slaves. A house slave worked, and often lived, in the slave owner’s home. He had many duties, such as cooking, cleaning, serving meals, and taking care of the teacher’s children. He was sometimes allowed to travel with the owner’s family. His situation was in stark contrast to that of the plantation slave, who lived in grueling conditions, often on sugar plantations where he worked from dawn to dusk under a foreman. Because house slaves were considered sufficiently privileged compared to their brothers and sisters in the field, some of them did not support the movement to abolish slavery.

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Here in Africa, at the height of the demand for independence and the campaign against colonialism, some traditional economic and political elites, who feared losing their privileged positions with the departure of the colonial masters, engaged in many clandestine activities to sabotage the struggles for independence. in their respective countries. In the French and Belgian colonies, they found solace in a special class known as Évolué, a French label to describe a native African or Asian who had “evolved” by becoming Europeanized through education or assimilation and had accepted the values ​​and standards Europeans. behaviour.


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They were often employed in administrative jobs (although rarely higher than clerks) and lived mainly in urban areas of the colony. A distinctive character of an évolué was the ability to break social ties with his group, and he seemed to have entered into another system of motivations and values.

Noted essayist and author, Chinweizu, describes them as “Buyer Bourgeoisie” in his work, ‘The West and The Rest of Us.’ The comprador bourgeoisie was made up of middlemen who exploited their relatives while serving foreign capital in political and economic relations. For them, everything was normal, as long as their interest was protected.

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It is in this context that the hypocrisy of Governor Soludo and Arthur Eze in taking the market away from Obi and promoting the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, can be fully understood. As far as they are concerned, everything must be done to protect his privileged positions in the Atiku presidency, even if it means dragging or dancing naked in the market square. Both are working to protect their future political and economic interests, respectively. But that’s where it ends.

Obi’s candidacy comes with many considerations. Taken from the personality, ability and character profiles of his main opponents, Atiku of the PDP, Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and others, Obi stands out and presents a way out of the current torpor on earth. He comes on board with a service record anchored in transparency and accountability. To top it off, he offers a message of hope to Nigerians, especially the youth and the downtrodden who have been serially raped by the country’s successive ruling class.

Obi has called on Nigerians to vote for him, not because of his region of birth or his religion, but because of his ability to deliver. Even on that, fairness and fairness Nigerians also agree that it is time to give their south-eastern political zone a chance to produce the next president.

In fact and history, the region has been severely marginalized in all aspects of national life, particularly political leadership. Since the beginning of the present dispensation in 1999, the West has had the opportunity to rise to the presidency through Olusegun Obasanjo, the North through the late Umar Yar’Adua and President Muhammadu Buhari. The South-South had Goodluck Jonathan.

Previously, the North had produced Abubakar Tafawa Balewa and Alhaji Shehu Shagari in the first and second republics, respectively. In the days of the military, the North had – Yakubu Gowon, Murtala Muhammad, Muhammadu Buhari, Ibrahim Babangida, Sani Abacha, Abdulsalami Abubakar – and the West had Obasanjo. Except for General Johnson Thomas Aguiyi-Ironsi’s windy six-month era, the East has not tried the charge.

Against the backdrop of the crushing defeat in the 1967-1970 civil war and the attendant mismanagement of the reconciliation program, the Southeast has been the recipient of the country’s unfair political system. This even when the people have shown greater commitment to the unity of the country through their expansive interactions and investments in all geopolitical units.

So I would expect a town with such a record of deprivation to be at the forefront of power shifting to their area. But this, unfortunately, is not the case. Rather, Soludo, Arthur Eze and a few other politicians in the area are further withdrawing into their cocoons in pure timorous mode, admiring Atiku Abubakar to hand over power to them when he has served his two terms in 2031. Nothing can be more unreal.

You can agree or disagree with Peter Obi’s aspiration, but one thing that cannot be denied him is the courage to be counted when it mattered most. Never has any South-Eastern made a bold move closer to what he is doing since the departure of Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe. For no reason should the governor of his state, Soludo, and his relative, Arthur Eze, act as agent provocateurs against his candidacy. After all, it was the late Prime Minister of the Northern Region, Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto, who said that if you don’t play the trumpet, no one else will; as others would be busy blowing theirs.

Politicians from the East are the area’s problem. It is their inability to take responsibility and provide genuine leadership to the people that has created space for elements outside of the madness to strut around, assume positions of influence and act as champions of the masses in the area. It is about time that the elite of the region henceforth realized that there must be guts before glory. They must sow to reap. Fortune smiles on the brave.

Soludo, Arthur Eze and other southeastern politicians with eyes for self-serving politics can continue their mercantilist agenda without dragging down the southeast.


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