Honourable Mohammed Ibrahim, a member of the House of Representatives, is renowned for his intransigent, uncompromising political principle and a man of reckoning in Kogi state politics. He stands out because of his dogged principle of justice. He does not prevaricate when his opinion on issues are sought. These traits were amply demonstrated in a no-hold-bar interview he granted the press recently.
That all governments and politics are run on the basis that truth generally hurts is outrageously reflected in the travails that besought Mohammed Ibro in the aftermath of that interview. Indeed, the unfriendly and disparaging press that addresses the honourable member who, hitherto, was adjudged the best representative to have come out of his constituency since the return of democracy in 1999 would reveal that his interview is akin to opening the Pandora box.
Recently more than three national dailies reported the news of the vote of no confidence passed on the honourable member by a youth group – Kogi East Concerned Forum. That report was ridiculous and infantile. The group is fictitious and its members faceless.
Much as they have no valid grounds to make such asinine remarks, the claims against the honourable member are rather outlandish, laughable and an attempt by some persons at flattering and ingratiating themselves to certain vested interests.
One needs not look too far to fathom the quiver from which sprang the arrows. It is counter press attack on the interview where Mohammed considered no fundamental social issue with a crucial bearing on the happiness, progress and development of Kogites a taboo. In that interview, Hon Mohammed no doubt took the bull by the horns and this crucifixion is the price. His immediate constituents whose interest remains uppermost in his dealings deserve to get the true picture.
Indeed, what Ibrahim said about the negatively static condition of development in Kogi state under the present administration is uttering true and representative of the unanimous sentiments among his constituents. Criticism has its purpose, if nothing, it reminds the criticized that people are watching, and that he needs to improve. Democracy is essentially so. But when constructive criticisms rather than provoke self-appraisal and adjustment is met with some cheap and wrong-headed pay back attacks, it becomes worrisome.
In spite of all these, Hon Mohammed Ibro is a high potential personality whose tenacity and personal values have borne impacts in his constituency. His influence, struggles and vision target the dream of his constituents and it is malicious to fabricate lies simply to disparage him.
Hon Mohammed Ibro, unlike his predecessors, is the only one who has given the phrase constituency projects, the popularity it enjoys in his constituency today. In earlier times, constituency projects are a term only familiar to the elite. Hon Ibro covers three LGAs and each has a functional constituency office and coordinators whose responsibilities are to collate information about specific and general problems of the constituency for the honourable’s attention. Hon Mohammed is a grassroots person despite his urbane disposition.
Not an occasion in any of his constituent communities misses his presence, directly or indirectly. The charge of alienation from his constituents made against him in the newspaper report is petty and unjustifiable.
Sometime, when fight, we lose the capacity for the righteous indignation but when you cry for the absent sun, you miss the stars. So the problem in Kogi requires that we look beyond hurting Hon Mohammed Ibro to the larger picture.