Kogi State was created in the year 1991. Since its creation, it is believed to be true that the Administrators and Governors handling the affairs of the state are in the sequence of Danladi Muhammed Zakari (Military), Abubakar Audu (Democratically elected under NRC Platform), Colonel Paul Omeruo (Military), Colonel Bzigu Afakariya (Military), Colonel Augustine Aniebo (Military), Abubakar Audu (ANPP), Ibrahim Idris (PDP) and Idris Wada (PDP).
Kogi which is made up of three major ethnic groups, it is unquestionable that until this moment with Alh. Yahaya Adoza Bello in power, none among the people of Kogi Central (Ebira Axis) and Kogi West (Okun Axis), except 3 months caretaker by Clarence Olafemi has ever spearheaded the leadership of the state since those years.
The people of Kogi Central, West and other minority groups had tagged it to greediness from the Eastern Axis of the state. There had been Power shift and rotation clamour by the duo axes, however all went to nullity.
The emergence of Alh. Yahaya Bello in 2015 is what many tagged as divine intervention by God. Although, Yahaya Bello is believed to have labored for that position by climbing second position in the 2015 APC Gubernatorial Primary Election. The success was achieved considering his key peer selection from Kogi East and West in person of Mr. Edward Onoja and Mr. Asiwaju Idris who supported him vehemently.
Of the two Yahaya Bello’s backbones mentioned above, Mr. Edward Onoja, the present Chief of Staff from the Eastern Axis is said to be more powerful that he could be rated as the second governor in this current dispensation of Yahaya Bello. Many revelations from government house reads that Mr. Onoja is said to have subdued the power of Asiwaju and every other appointees across the three senatorial districts.
Alh. Yahaya Bello who has demonstrated to be a detribalized person, on assumption of office was extolled by many Kogites for breaching the ethnocentricity and greediness in the state. However, the present dealings in government house reveals that Edward onoja who claimed to accept such stance by Alh. Yahaya Bello is not practicing it. Cases are as revealed below:
In Kogi Central, he is said to have masterminded the appointment of some key officials and administrators. The former Chief Press Secretary, Petra Akinti from Ogori Magongo part of Kogi Central resigned, only for Edward Onoja to replaced her with Onogwu Galacticus from the astern axis. He subdues the power of Mr. Ohere (the SA on Local government and Chieftaincy affairs) and Mr. Asuku (the DG Protocol) that many of their actions need to get the attention of Edward Onoja before it could be established.
In Kogi West however, Edward Onoja is said to have subdued the effort of Mr. Asiwaju (the current Commissioner of Finance), stunts that lead to internal crisis but unfortunately Asiwaju has no option than to kneel for him. Edward Onoja is said to have influenced the appointment of many officials from Kogi West as well. It is said that some appointees obey him than the governor.
Additionally, Edward Onoja out of his policy and strategies to take over the governorship position from Kogi Central (Alh. Bello) to the Igalas and him being the successor comes 2023 has caused problems among top men who labored for the party that led to the imminent victory of Late Audu Abubakar, before the switch to governor Bello.
He used Gov. Bello against Haddy Ametuo (the Party Chairman), Sen. Ohiare, Late Sen. Ohize, Sen. Deen Obatemi, Dr. Philip Salawu, Gamji and many others. This paves way for him to be in charge and make all decisions as he wishes without any interruption.
In the same manner, Edward Onoja also caused crisis between Alh. Yahaya Bello and key leaders cum political strongholds in the west such as Sen. Dino Melaye, Dr. Clarence Olafemi, Hon. Sunday Faleke, and many others.
Many has blamed this on the seating governor for allowing common Chief of Staff to ride him that way. Bello kinsmen, including the ever-respected Royal Father has commented unhappily over this, many kogites however has Bello is the governor by mouth but not the governor by action.
Though, many has also analyzed it that the governor lacks the ability to stop Onoja from doing all that, reasons being that the Eastern part of the state by virtual of election result figures and Local Government Areas Strength is said to be more populated than the Kogi Central or versus Kogi West. So, Alh. Yahaya Bello denying Edward Onoja of his wills is like toying with the power in his hand as dominance effect could affect his seat or his reelection.
Edward Onoja is so considerate to his people that Kogi Eastern Youths who made little efforts for Alh. Yahaya Bello tussle and some that were even in opposition parties before have been pulled to this current government to enjoy goodies whereas other zones are not that so. In fact, some die hard known supporters of this current government from scratch till date are still roaming and taking shame from the streets for working for government that cares not about their welfare.
It is also part of Edward Onoja’s smartness that, many Kogi Eastern youths have been absorbed into several State and Federal Government Agencies such as Federal Civil Service, Army/Army DSS, Navy/Navy DSS, FRSC, Civil Defence, Police, CBN, FIRC, NIMASA, NNPC, NERDC and many more, all these he do with financial backup, but Kogi Central and Kogi West would rather sit down in their Abuja Mansion or be building Fueling Stations, lavishing their money on family and prostitutes without minding the future of their youths. If they don’t have the power, don’t they have the money to work jobs for their youths like Edward Onoja is doing?
If they lack the concept before, this should be a bonus to them now.
Although, the antecedence of Smart Adeyemi is what affected him during the last election, but the Kogi West people made mistake for voting Smart Adeyemi out. They drove Dino and picked Smart Adeyemi, Smart would have been another wise political force to speak for the west, but his past sins consume him.
The repercussion of any minorities attaining power in kogi state will always be negative especially having an example of self-centered Edward Onoja as a pillar to the struggle, however the consequences of minority being in power could be positive only if minority groups come together in unity and in one spirit, and team up earnestly to take power for themselves. Only this can the narratives be changed, but as for now, the Power shift that has longed been clamored for in the past has not been achieved. It is more like 30% chieved and 70% unachieved.
The current speaker of Kogi State House of Assembly, Kolawole is on the other hand not foreseeing the future, or he is foreseeing future but also lack the capability to do the needful too. Why did I say this? As a speaker, he should be able to dialogue with some members of the house, particularly Kogi Central and West to pass a bill of “Power Shift/Rotation”, signed by the governor to become law. But I don’t even know what he is doing on that seat. This is the only way the minorities can share from the state cake squarely else, the kogi East will continue to manipulate Kogi West or Kogi Central to attain that power (seat) once it enters their hands again. Forget the usual detribalize songs, it is a thing of the mouth and not heart.
I’m on this note urging Dr. Philip Salawu, Mr. Clarence Olafemi, Sen. Salihu Ohiare, Sen. Dino Melaye, Sen. Deen Abatemi, Sen. Smart Adeyemi, Dr. Gamji Abubakar, and every other political bulldozer in Kogi Central, West and also in Kogi East who never supports impunity to stand up, shun all these social media rabble rousing and start the real assignment to saving the people of Kogi State from shackles. This is not to preach sentiment, but a reality. Kogi is in danger because Yahaya Bello is in bondage. All his actions are not his doings as he has been known a very good and kindhearted man, but his regrets will affect us as Kogites.
So, I beg that the above mentioned people never backed him in totality, they should always find every possible opportunity to resolve with him, and even if he shun as usual, one day he will come back to his senses. This fight may be difficult, it may be hard to achieve now, but certainly 2023 will comply.
Help the youths, help the generation yet unborn, save Kogi State Now!
– Muhammad Usman-Bello Muhammad