Ododo: The right ‘flower’ for the times
BY YABAGI MOHAMMED.
One of the most diverse states in Nigeria today is Kogi State. Thank God for technology and media, many can attest to the fact that many tongues constitute the confluence state, a place that is a melting point for many who nature, conventions and other elements have caused to call a home. Kogi is without a doubt one the most cosmopolitan state in Nigeria.
There is no doubt that this understanding is key to whoever wants to govern the state and the emergence of Alhaji Usman Ahmed Ododo in the last APC primaries against all odds is a testament to the fact that Kogi needs someone with his temperament and character at this point in time. No doubt a gentle man with full understanding of the importance of a united Kogi is one of the selling points the APC can give the people and Ododo oozes all of that in all his interactions so far. Ododo means flower and he is truly flowery, with words to suit the current political climate.
Ododo knows that building unity in an ethnically diverse society such as Kogi is a complex task that requires a multi-faceted approach.
Encouraging cross-cultural interactions is one way he is doing that and it is politically and ethically encouraged to crisscross interactions across divides. Encouraging people from different ethnic backgrounds to interact and engage with each other is an effective way to build bridges among communities that exist in Kogi State and the APC governorship candidate is putting that to action. His engagement has been able to achieve the needed cohesion among political stakeholders and across political divides.
Kogi APC got it right by the decision to select Ododo to fly its flag in the November gubernatorial poll.
He is a man that is creating a sense of belonging for people to feel more connected and invested in the coming political leadership of Kogi State. Ododo has created a sense of inclusivity through his decision to reach out to those aggrieved in the political process in the runup to now, giving them all reasons to join hands with him to consolidate on the current development strides across Kogi.
Dialogue and collaboration are essential to any effort at building unity in an ethnically diverse society such as the state. Ododo’s team has created forums for open discussion and debate on issues that affect Kogi and is promoting collaboration among different groups for the development of the state. This is very key at this point in time.
Combating discrimination and prejudice is one attribute that is currently required given the tempestuous stand being postulated by some about governance in the state. Discrimination and prejudice can create divisions within the people and this is what the decision of Alhaji Ododo to reach out is quelling. There is no doubt that Alhaji Ododo’s administration will promote equal opportunity for all citizens of the state when elected Governor.
Overall, promoting unity in an ethnically diverse state such as Kogi requires concerted effort from all citizens of the state. It requires a commitment to building relationships, promoting awareness, creating a sense of belonging, encouraging dialogue and collaboration, and promoting diversity. What Ododo advocate is the need to work together to create a state that is united for a sustainable development.
YABAGI MOHAMMED is a journalist, a Media and PR Consultant, a Political Communicator, and a writer.
He is the Secretary and Head of Content Creation for Ododo Mandate Movement.