Senator Echocho: The Malice of Critics and Judgement of Posterity

Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho, representing Kogi East district

Senator Echocho: The Malice of Critics and Judgement of Posterity

By Nathan Oguche Emmanuel, PhD

In a democracy, various voices strive to shape the narratives surrounding public office holders. However, within the public space, two types of critics have been identified. The first type criticizes with facts and figures, intending to correct and mold. Those in this category do so with soundness of mind, fairness, and justice.

The second type of critic passes judgment on people by playing with emotions and sentiments. This category deliberately ignores facts, either due to ignorance or for malicious purposes.

Regardless of the type of critic, one can easily be accused of bias or labeled as a sycophant or traducer, depending on the side of the divide one stands on.

Since everyone can be labeled as either a traducer or a sycophant, passing verdicts on the activities of public service holders is better left in the hands of posterity, since it is impartial and values-neutral.

Posterity evaluates individuals based on their actions and precedents, without being swayed by sentiments, partisanship, ideology, or politics. Posterity does not identify with a political party and shares no religion; it is upright, fair, and firm.

It does not prostrate to financial inducement, neither does it have a wicked mind to shut down a star that serves as a source of light to a whole community or an iroko that provides shades for many.

Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho is not new to public opinion, especially in the Kogi public space. The reputation graph of this distinguished personality of worth has been subjected to different interpretations since his entry into the political space.

Some days he is loved, at other times, he is loathed; some days he is celebrated, and at other times, he is despised. Despite the changes in his reputational trajectory, the persona, Echocho, has not changed.

He has remained committed to the welfare of ordinary people, giving succor to the poor and being a voice to the voiceless.

While an ignorable minority of people in the Kogi East Senatorial District may pass negative judgment on Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho primarily because of his party affiliation, available facts reveal that the people’s Senator is on the positive side of history and will be exonerated for his efforts in bringing smiles to the downtrodden and improving the lives of his constituents.

Senator Jubril Isah Echocho was a well-known figure long before his distinguished elevation to the upper legislative chamber, where he presently represents the good people of Kogi East Senatorial District. Renowned as one of the foremost financial experts in the corporate world, he leveraged his influence to serve both God and humanity.

In return, his constituents bestowed upon him immense love and affection. Such was the depth of their admiration that when his governorship candidacy was thwarted in 2015, political analysts perceived it not merely as his personal loss but as a setback for the entire state, Kogi State.

Many political parties and individuals have, in the past, sought to leverage his credibility and popularity to gain power. From the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressive Party, the story has always been the same.

However, some malicious actors have also equally exploited his quiet, godly, and peaceful demeanor to score cheap political points. Sometimes, it appears his enemies always win, but their triumph, just as the Holy Book says, is but for the moment.

A journey through the life trajectory of this accomplished banker-turned-politician indicates that he consistently overcomes the manipulative tactics of his political adversaries.

The more they attempt to dim his light, the brighter he shines.

In public service, whoever is entrusted with a mandate, responsibilities are expected. When Alhaji Jibrin Isah Echocho was given the mandate in 2019 to represent the good people of Kogi East at the Senate, the Igala community had no doubt about his capabilities.

Having empowered numerous individuals through financial support and employment opportunities, and possessing a deep understanding of boardroom politics, the Senate would be a familiar terrain for him.

His demonstrated capacity through effective representation during his first tenure further solidifies this belief.

In the last five years, he has embarked on legislative initiatives and political advocacy at the National Assembly through the introduction of bills aimed at establishing various institutions such as an Eye Center at Ochadamu, an Orthopedic Hospital at Dekina, the Federal University of Education, Ankpa, the Nigeria Cashew Crop Processing Agency, the Nigeria Capital Market Development Fund, among others.

It is worthy to note that these bills are in different stages, and when passed, they will have a positive impact on the people. Recently also, he has been applauded for his role in ensuring that Kogi State is recognized as an oil-producing state in Nigeria.

Arguments within the public space are not won by emotions; rather, they are won by facts delivered eloquently and logically. Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho has fulfilled his mandate both as an illustrious son who loves his people and as a parliamentarian.

Over the past five years, the senator has also focused on community development and empowerment.

Across the nine local government areas under his jurisdiction, he has made remarkable interventions in infrastructure such as boreholes, transformers, and roads, as well as empowerment programs targeting youth and women in agriculture, skills acquisition, and education.

In Ankpa local government alone, Echocho has provided 500KVA transformers in Olufofo, Ejegbo, Ofugo, and Inye, and has installed solar-powered boreholes in Emere, Emekutu, Mission Street, and Erane, among other communities.

In Dekina Local Government Area, he reactivated the Acharu Oil mill in Egume, constructed a Skills Acquisition Center in Anyigba, and built roads in Odu, Ajagumu, Ajekelaga, and Alokoli.

Additionally, he has constructed solar-powered boreholes in Anyigba, Dekina, Okete, Odu Anana, and Ogbaloto, renovated Dekina General Hospital, and reactivated the Prince Abubakar Audu University Bakery with the supply of a delivery van.

Despite facing financial constraints, Senator Echocho ensures that every local government area in Kogi State benefits from his developmental efforts.

His uncommon interventions therefore span across the nine local government areas in Kogi East, and in doing so, he anchors on justice, fairness, and equity. In Omala Local Government Area, he has supported the construction of solar-powered boreholes in Olla and Ogodu, supplied drugs and medical equipment to the Primary Health Care Center, and facilitated electrification in Igodo community with a 500KVA transformer.

In Bassa Local Government Area, similar efforts have been made, including the construction of solar-powered boreholes in Agodo and Elule.
Furthermore, communities in Olamaboro, Idah, Ofu, and Igala-mela Odolu local government areas also benefit from Senator Echocho’s interventions.

These initiatives encompass health, youth and women empowerment, agricultural development through the provision of modern farming equipment, and the establishment of solar-powered boreholes, among other projects.

All these projects across the width and breadth of Kogi East demonstrate Senator Echocho’s commitment to addressing pressing needs and improving the quality of life for everyone, contributing to the overall socio-economic development of the entire region.

As a man full of love and compassion, a man pained by the deplorable conditions of men, women, children, and the underprivileged across the nine local government areas in Kogi East, he is committed to doing more, and it behooves the people to encourage him to do so. Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho may be a politician today and may have associated with some entities you don’t love, but he remains the same person we have always known.

He is that man who is committed to improving the lives of people, empowering young people, and putting smiles on their faces. Echocho has not changed.

When Senator Echocho is mentioned in the court of public opinion, and there is a clash between emotions and logic, the latter should pave the way for the former. Likewise, when there is an argument between sentiments and facts within the same court, reasonable people should allow facts to override sentiments.

You may not like the name Echocho, you may deride him for identifying with certain political parties and individuals, but you cannot deny the fact that Senator Jibrin Isah Echocho has performed excellently.

For this, he is loved by the majority of Igala people. Instead of being crucified for his few and tolerable flaws and mistakes, we should raise our voices in symphony to celebrate him for empowering the youth and women. Instead of repudiating him, we should celebrate him for his numerous legislative accomplishments.

For we know, when the roll is called yonder, the verdict of posterity is what counts, and not emotion nor sentiments. For being on the side of posterity rather than the emotional outbursts of the minority, Echocho will certainly be judged faithfully.

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