by Fortune God’sSon Alfred
First off, let’s get one point cleared out straight away: Mr Ben Murray-Bruce’s oratorical prowess has never been in doubt at any point in time. Goodness me! The man is a showman and a brilliant human being. So he will always produce the right soundbites to gain admiration and plaudits from people outside Bayelsa East Senatorial District and Bayelsa State.
So why am I not enthusiastic about him representing me in the Senate even though I know and acknowledge his natural endowment?
My points of objection are that:
1. He does not know and/or understand the core concerns and aspirations of our people;
2. He has not made any effort or even pretended to understand and/or know the issues and concerns that represent the core interest of our people.
People! Words come easy to brilliant folks. I know it because I know many of such people.
You might be Albert Einstein, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet all molded in one human, but if you lack knowledge and understanding in a particular area and make no effort to gain that which you are deficient in, but rather create diversions and smokescreens, you will surely fail. You will be like a brilliant student who rather than understand and answer the questions he/she is given in an examination decides to ask himself/herself different questions and answers same and expects the Examiner to grade them based on their reputation and personal standards.
It is needless arrogance on the part of Ben Murray-Bruce to go to the Senate with Bayelsa East seat to be blabbing about Nollywood and entertainment and other things that do not have any remote or direct positive impact on the lives of the people whose seat (chance and hope of effective representation) he will be wasting with his personal legislative Agenda.
Mr Murray-Bruce must come to grip with the fact that he will first and foremost be the Senator representing Bayelsa East Senatorial District, a place where 98% of the communities are not connected to the National Electricity Grid, a place without any Federal Health Institution of any kind which has led to high maternal and infant mortality rates; and where the Strategic Brass LNG Project is begging for attention, before he is a Nigerian Senator.
There is a rap line from American Hip-hop star, 50 Cent, I believe Mr Murray-Bruce would be familiar with, that says “There’s no place like home, New York, New York, I run the City, I don’t dance around like Diddy.”
Bruce should stop dancing around and start thinking of returning home now to establish 3 functional Senatorial Offices to serve his people rather than staying in Lagos, giving the failed Emmanuel Uduaghan “Man of the Year” award and giving us needless populist speeches that will have absolutely no bearing on the price of Plantain, Garri or Nembe crayfish in Ogbia, Sangana or Odioma markets.
The people of Bayelsa East, Bayelsa State, the Ijaw Nation and the Niger Delta are still trying hard to recover from the shock brought to them by the defeat of one of their own who spent more than Five years in the top job in the land playing Nationalist in almost total neglect of them. The people don’t need another Nationalist at the moment; they need a Champion that will go to the senate to put their concerns in the National Agenda. And if the senator-elect cannot do that and would rather twerk around with his fantasy national agenda, then he should step aside even before the 8th Senate is inaugurated in June.
Given that Bruce is a businessman, I expect him to start studying the factors that have militated against the smooth kick off of the Brass LNG project that has the potential of creating more than 10,000 direct jobs and many more indirect wealth creation avenues for the people of his senatorial District. This is the kind of issue that should be occupying his time now and not pretentious populist Twitter rants.
As I type this, the Federal University Otuoke in Ogbia Local Government Area, which will be under Bruce’s District is yet to have a law backing its existence. Over 75% of communities in the Senator-elect’s jurisdiction (including his village) cannot be accessed by road. There is high rate of criminality such as Sea Piracy, due largely to the high levels of youth unemployment and poverty in Bayelsa East. These are just few of the many challenges facing our people, yet Bruce is playing Zik of Africa to their total neglect.
So you see why those who know the task before any genuine senator, of Bayelsa East Senatorial District who knows his onions, are not impressed by Mr Murray-Bruce’s shenanigans and oratory exploits.
The task before him is enormous and he cannot afford to fail. So, if I were in his shoes, I will consider this little piece of writing as a wakeup call and start studying hard to serve my people better than anyone else before me. As the saying goes, he, who fails to plan, plans to fail. Ben Bruce must not fail us. The clock has started ticking for the Silverbird head honcho. To fail or to succeed is a choice he has to make.
– Fortune God’sSon Alfred is a Public Policy Analysts, a Strategist and the Publisher of www.sayelbatimes.com