“A wind of change is blowing across the continent of Africa” …. ED Blyden
As the 2023 gubernatorial race heats up with political parties strategizing with lists of names of formidable personalities deemed to have the potentials to help their parties cruise to victory come 2023 governorship polls, the Labour Party (LP) has zeroed in on a most outstanding and sophisticated administrator cum technocrat, Chief (Amb.) Yohanna Margif.
Chief Yohanna Margif is one of the front runners in Plateau state in terms of industry, entrepreneurship, human capital, administration, etc. A complete gentleman of who humility is written all over his person, Yohanna, soft spoken, calculative, articulate and intelligent, is from the very resilient and industrious Bokos ethnic nationality.
He is a man whose many contacts and connections in public and private lives have earned him friendship and acceptance among other ethnic groups both in the state and Nigeria. His popularity is not just in his ethnic region alone but more pronounced among the other tribes and divides.
It could be remembered that Plateau state has not really fared very well in recent times, mostly in the last seven to eight years. It is no gainsaying the fact that the Nigerian politico- social system is in dire need of overhaul. Nigerians are not just bemoaning the rot in the leadership system. No. There is a complete breakdown of the engine and mechanism of governance.
Government itself has manifested apparent signs of exasperation at the rate which its systems – mostly in security – are diminishing in value. The complete disillusionment of the ordinary people is not just on the federal government but, also, has permeated the rungs of leadership down the state government levels.
It is apparent that the failure of leadership at the center has canker-wormed its way down the state lines- thereby creating a lack luster and willy-nilly tendency for a competitive leadership spirit towards socio-economic and infrastructural development among the state governments. This situation has, thus, reduced leadership to a mere responsibility of paying monthly emolument for workers. Yet some states may not be up to date in this.
Recently, Plateau state has not shown much prospects of governance. The initial administrative leap which Governor Simon Lalong demonstrated had soon vanished probably owing to distractions from wanton killings and herdsmen disturbances.
It is saddening that with all the initial good intentions of the present governor, the one issue that has lingered and would certainly endure for quite sometime is the inglorious state-induced impeachment attempt at the Speaker of the Plateau state House of Assembly. This is the state that had celebrated the excelling leadership and administrative ingenuity of its forebears like the late Chief Solomon Lar, David Jonah Jang, etc.
The state surely needs the superlative leadership acumen and the landmark administrative Midas touch which the candidature of Chief (Amb.) Yohanna Margif, and the reviving vision of the Labour Party promise to bring along. It is believed that Plateau state would require a rejuvenated politico-social space to be able to regain social consciousness and, probably, once again, begin to feel the positive impacts of democratic governance.
This is the crux of the matter. This, also, is the leadership riddle which makes it more imperative for Yohanna’s time to happen on the Plateau as the next Executive Governor of the state. As a technocrat, Chief Yohanna Margif is an economic builder and empowerment enhancer.
A man with unquenchable thirst and passion for agriculture and farming, Yohanna is coming to lead Plateau state into a season of productivity and economic boost. Already, Plateau state is endowed with numerous academic institutions that offer courses in almost every other area of life.
With a huge appetite for learning and knowledge acquisition, Yohanna would not hesitate to galvanize the sprawling opportunities awaiting conscious harvest for the uplifting of socio- economic and infrastructural development and growth.
As the saying goes, “Any question about what lies beneath the earth should be directed to the rabbit because there he lives”, Chief Yohanna Margif is a bonnafide indigene of Plateau state and a native of the industrious and hardworking Bokos ethnic nationality.
For a man who has worked all his life in the state, and who knows the peoples of Plateau state with their differences and their peculiarities, Chief Yohanna Margif will not be at a loss on how to tackle the seemingly intractable problems of the state – mostly insecurity.
Recently, a Face book user has, among other hilarious expressions and comments running in the social media and other public opinion spaces, said, “The coming of Labour Party (LP) in Plateau state and the emergence of Chief (Amb) Yohanna Margif as the gubernatorial candidate is a welcome development. Our people have abandoned APC and PDP for Labour Party. Now there is hope for Plateau state”.
The above statement, when put side by side with the opening quote from ED Blyden’s hilarious and jubilant statement celebrating the positive results of Pan Africanism in the rapid achievement of independence from repressive colonial masters by African nations, lend credit to positivism and optimism of the Plateau people in Chief Yohanna’s expected victory as the outcome of the 2023 gubernatorial elections in Plateau state. He is a man who knows the state, he knows the people. He, undoubtedly, must know their issues. This is the point – the man who has the magic wand. It is Yohanna time! Tik tok, tik tok,
Zeb Obioma Ijewa
Public commentator and current affairs analyst writes from Abuja.