SEMINAR ON ANGER MANAGEMENT AND PEACE BUILDING SUPPORT DURING ELECTIONS,
HELD AT ORCHID HOTEL, ASABA FROM 24TH – 25TH AUGUST, 2010
THEME : MAKING IT HAPPEN : PEACE SECURITY AND STABILITY
IN DELTA STATE DURING AND AFTER THE ELECTIONS
REMARKS BY S.P.O. FORTUN EBIESESSIONAL CHAIRMAN ON TUESDAY,
24TH AUGUST, 2010 ON ANGER
I am not sure I get easily angry. I definitely do not look like an angry man; and if anything, I look more like either a Chinese Magician or a Hebrew Prophet and probably a comedian. I am not a violent man. This nature of mine may be attributable to the fact that I have never had any personal political ambition. I may not be a satisfied man but I am contented. I come from an enclave in Delta State that is predominantly mild tempered and it is called Alidinma (meaning Goodland) Agbor and this good land is inhabited by mostly good people, like me, since it was founded. This remote village is situate and locates within an ethnic nationality that in modern times has been non-violent and properly lacking in anger almost bordering on docility and eventual fatalism. This their attitude of OSOLOBUE hua (God is there – God de : poor man’s prayer) of people of Ika Ethnic Nationality has led to their being taken for granted; not seriously reckoned with in the scheme of things; their guaranteed automatic followership; that they can be relied upon to agree with the rest; their not being bothered about in either the baking or the sharing and eating of the mythical cake of the State and the saying “leave them to me”. I do not think I have had sufficient contact with those at various levels of Government for them to have discovered any treats in me to label me as an ANGRY MAN and inviting me of all persons in this our State to Chair THE SESSION on ANGER MANAGEMENT by the letter signed by Mrs(DR) Beatrice Omeni, The Secretary to the State Government, thus and by implication portraying me as an ANGRY Chairman or Chairman of Anger. Let me assure the Secretary to the State Government that domestic anger and domestic violence are alien to me and that in my 46 years of marital bliss I have never raised my hand on my wife and children. I am at peace with myself. Consequent on this, I was shockingly and embarrassingly pleased to receive the invitation as a matter of honour from His Excellency, Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan. What then qualifies me to be here – oh yes, I recall that in 2003, I wrote a book titled OVERCOMING THE SPIRIT OF ANGER (A Practical Study Guide and Help Material for Leaders and Believers). I sent copies of the book to Federal and Delta State Governments. The Federal ordered copies and distributed to staff etc. My State did not even acknowledge receipt – was I angry? Yes; and did I manage my anger? Yes especially as I had no choice.
From the list of Professors who are to speak, my role here is not to present another lecture which deals with the details that the resource persons will handle. However, there is need to remember that we should seriously address the issue of those who delight in making us angry before, during and after elections. We the ANGERED would not be ANGRY and create insecurity, instability and “peaceless” and “unpeaceful” environment unless we are made angry by some persons who do not realize that Anger is D short of DANGER (ie. D added to ANGER = DANGER). Therefore all those who make us ANGRY are DANGEROUS. Who are these DANGEROUS persons and who are these persons who ANGER us? These DANGEROUS persons who make us angry; many of whom are seated here; are and include but not limited to the following and viz:
· unprincipled adults, old, aged and young political deviants who have abandoned the path of honour; the politics of commonsense, good co-operation and shared ethical values for the politics of cockiness; we are in power and what can the rest do; we are the only ones that matter, hatred; I “don’t-careism” and unethical “valuelessness”;
· compromised businessmen, religious leaders, traditional rulers,
· student leaders, professors and other members of the academia, professionals including media practitioners, praise singers; sycophants, leaders of civil societies and those who claim to be youths and yet are above 45 years etc;
· those who did not add value to our lives during the currency of their office holding by not providing us with housing especially in the swamps and mangrove creeks of the Niger Delta; and did not provide us with any type of infrastructure;
· those who did not execute the contracts awarded to them and did not meet the supplies ordered through them including those who could not even construct roads locate and situate within their villages and even passing through in front of their houses;
· those who commissioned uncompleted and non-existent projects;
· those who convert funds meant for constituency projects to personal and family and selfish use; leaving their constituency poorer than before they were elected/appointed into political office;
· those who do not have their constituency offices within their own constituency but have even moved same to other States or do not have any constituent office anywhere at all; and whose constituency office have no staff but continue to collect staff salaries;
· those who will and are now coming with big jeeps to campaign in remote villages without roads; hospitals without doctors and equipments; schools without roofs, chairs/tables and teachers;
· those who deny us JUSTICE and EQUITY;
· a judiciary that dances to the tone of the powers that be;
· a National Assembly and State Legislatures that may have abandoned the making of laws for the good governance and well being of the masses in favour of oversight functions; impeachment of one officer after another and in preference for their personal welfare and personal comfort;
· political thugs who are uncivil and fight in and out of the hallowed chambers of the legislative;
· political jobblers and 419-ners;
· over ambitious, greedy and selfish politicians who take the electorate for granted;
· those who have no spirit of sacrifice and patriotism in them and lacking in the gift of martyrdom;
· those who impose, nominate, adopt, produce preferred candidates and “kidnapped” candidates and deny us of electing candidates of choice through a transparent voting process;
· those who have failed us by not keeping to and fulfilling their electoral promises;
· those who have refused to make provision for special interest (e.g. the handicapped) and the disadvantaged of all types, and have deprived them of various rights;
· those who call themselves great men of God instead of humble servants of the Lord and deceive us with religious prophecies as to who will win the election and whom they claim God has told them we should vote for;
· those without conscience who sell out their political birthrights for a mess of portage like the biblical Esau;
· those who making/lying about promises and things that they know that they would never do – hollow and already broken promises before they are made;
· those who are intolerant of the views of other persons and are incapable of yielding to superior logic;
· those who deserted and forsook governance and spent more time at parties for chieftaincy titles, turbanning, endless thanksgiving services, high society wedding ceremonies and birthdays in an outside the country, house warming as well as time wasting uninspiring worthless caucus all night meetings;
· political evil plotters and Judases who stagnate our development; pull us down, hinder our progress and regress our advancement;
· political opportunist, adventurists and naira diggers;
· promoters of “godfatherism” and their prodigal sons who must and should continue to bit the fingers that feed them;
· charlatans, visionless purported leaders; never-do-wells, rumour mongers, destructive talebearers who are professional favour seekers disguised and masquerading as special assistants, advisers, helpers, aides, “deputies of this and deputies to that”;
· election riggers possessed by satanic spirit of destruction of our common wealth Nigeria;
· ballot box stuffers and snatchers;
· those who exhibit the attitude of “what can the people do” especially when elected, and people are unable to reach them through telephones, text messages, letters, personal visits etc;
· those who flaunt their wealth on us in the face of abject poverty before, during and after the election;
· self seeking political liars, cheats, prostitutes (who change from party to party, support for one candidate to another etc.).
Therefore I repeat, the issue is not about we who are ANGERED but how do we manage those who cause us anger and put us in danger; who cause us pain, who brutalize us; who cheat us and who are completely unrepentant in making us angry without any remorse whatsoever and determined not to add value to the lives of all by running all exclusive system of governance by bowing and “co-toeing” to only those who cause insecurity, instability and lack of peace. This encourages the notion that peaceful areas are taken for granted and anything goes for them as they would not be taken care of because they are peaceful.
I want to remind all present that when Adam and Eve sinned, God in his anger drove them out of the Garden of Eden – God placed a Cherub with Flaming Sword at the gate of the Garden to prevent the transgressing pair from ever re-entering same. When CAIN committed the heinous, grievous and unpardonable sin of killing his brother ABEL, God declared him a vagabond and placed a mark of dishonour on him – let the attitude of some of you seated here lead you not to be permanently dishonoured within your communities. Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed because their sin angered God. Our Saviour and Lord Jesus Christ when he got angry canned the people in the Temple and drove them out of same. Christ said “Woe unto you, Pharisees” and I say “woe unto all of you DANGEROUS persons who cause us ANGER” and remind you as to what Christ said in Mat. 23:24
“blind guides which strain at a gnat and swallow the camel”
“You call yourselves leaders and yet you can’t see an inch before your noses for you fitter the mosquitoes and swallow the camel”
These are few examples of JUSTIFIABLE ANGER (DIVINE ANGER; RIGHTEOUS ANGER) – the anger that corrects evil doing and heralds goodness and mercy which shall follow us all the days of our lives. Sometimes and granting justifiable anger and in the face of extreme provocation the only way to resolve issue and create sanity is by way of a DISASTER SOLUTION as was the case in Sodom and Gomorrah.
It is very necessary that this seminar must come up with practically implementable solutions and having done so; Government should ensure that the recommendations are not ignored as has been the case with several other reports (e.g. The Committees on Think Tank on Development and that on History, Politics and Peace – 2000) that made useful recommendation on PEACE, SECURITY AND STABILITY. If just a few of the recommendations from the heaps of several reports to Government were implemented this seminar would not have been necessary.
Unless those who make us angry change their DANGEROUS ways; unless those who govern us and we the governed find solutions to these problems, let us hope that DISASTER SOLUTIONS would not be the only option available. Let the disaster solution not be such that those who anger us; and lead us into danger; will be treated like common criminals by way of instant justice – by hanging tyres on their necks dousing them with petrol and burning them. The good Lord will forbid this – Amen. As an incorrigible optimist and a believer in the Project Delta State and NIGERIA, my beloved; am inspired to say we will never get to the stage of the application of Disaster Solution to the problems unleashed on us by some luciferan politicians without conscience.
Your Excellency thank you for approving that I be invited to speak to this distinguished star-studded audience some of whom I may have annoyed in no small way today. I thank all present and request we please ensure we change our evil ways from today. If I have annoyed you I have no apologies in making you angry as you will commence and put into practice the management of your anger which is the purpose of this Seminar. I look forward to the changes that you will make to usher in the elimination of ANGER, the establishment of PEACE, SECURITY and STABILITY before, during and after the forthcoming elections in Delta State and in Nigeria.