USAfrica: Peter Obi, Coming to America. By Chido Nwangwu

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Peter Obi

Special to USAfrica magazine (Houston) and USAfricaonline.com, first Africa-owned, US-based newspaper published on the Internet

Peter Obi, Coming to America. By Chido Nwangwu

Follow him on Twitter @Chido247

Coming to America is the successful 1988 movie of American romantic comedy and cultural interactions based on a story originally created by the superstar actor Eddie Murphy. I have watched this epic movie several times as it has so many things to say about the African heritage and American cultural differences. 

Murphy played the lead role, as Akeem Joffer, the crown prince of Zamunda, a fictional African nation. He visits the United Statesb with hopes of meeting a woman he can marry for love, not status. 

In some ways, Peter Obi’s latest visits and engagements in the diaspora seek to create a synergy with the global, trans-continental interests of millions of us in the diaspora with his pastel vision for Nigeria, a country in the clutches of exploding crises, murderous impunity and crippling incompetence of the leadership of the country of 220 million people. 

Obi, technocrat and presidential candidate of the Labour Party, begins a set of lectures and exchanges across some key cities in the north American continent. I’ll classify those as the diaspora engagement and civic information strategy. 

On Sunday, August 28, 2022, Obi’s first port of call and lectureship will be Ontario in Canada; followed by Los Angeles in California; Houston in Texas; Charlotte in North Carolina; Washington DC; Atlanta in Georgia; New York City. He will address such diverse organizations as Africa Business Club, Black Law Students Association, Columbia University. U.S. Chamber of Commerce, from a mix of Nigerian, African, American groups and coalitions.

On Wednesday August 31,2022 in Houston (the undisputed capital city of Nigerians in the American diaspora), I’ll have a one-on-one USAfricaLIVE interview with Mr. Peter Obi, the disruptive leader of the movement also known as “Obidients”. 

My chat with Obi will seek, from the proverbial horse’s mouth,  a “structure” and “capacity” assessment of his battle for the 2023 presidency of Nigeria. I’ll ask him (if by any possibilities he’s elected President), what would be the biggest problem to tackle first: insecurity/banditry/terrorism or economic hardships/inflation and existential needs such as the cost of a loaf of bread? 

What he considers his biggest challenge? What is the single most important  infrastructure that Nigeria needs, at this time? 

How should we make the business relations between the United States, Nigeria and Africa work better for all of us? 

What about the entrenched bigotry against Nigerians by other Nigerians? Why should a recent Nigerian immigrant live/reside or move to most parts of the U.S to live life, pursue happiness and liberty, and it’s a hill of beans to have an Effiong, Adanna, Kikelomo, Abdullahi to contest as local government chairperson or representative in other parts of Nigeria? For example, I can run for President of the United States, and get very good support without some privileged bumpkin and hatemonger telling me that I’m from the “wrong” part of the country! 

Sadly, in Buhari’s Nigeria, some Nigerians are more equal than others. It is not the way of modern systems and progressive societies. It is especially remarkable that for the second highest position in the very influential and impbortant U.S Treasury department, Biden did not only pick an African-American he chose a Nigerian-American, Adewale Adeyemo.

I’ll like to know what he thinks of the jejune concept of “Emi lokan” — a Yoruba phrase which simply means “it’s my turn”, as being asserted by Buhari’s ruling APC’s presidential candidate Bola Ahmed Tinubu? 

USAfrica: Peter Obi, Coming to America. By Chido Nwangwu
Chido Nwangwu, Founder of USAfrica

Does it mean Alhaji Tinubu’s “turn” (with his VP Alhaji Kashim Shettima) to extend or simply manage the catastrophic failures of the Buhari presidency from personal to economic insecurities, from ancient nepotism to divisive religious and ethnic preferential treatments, daily killings across all the zones/regions of Nigeria, the scandalous drop of the Naira in the parallel market. Especially, complicated by the scarcity of fuel and kerosine, the collapsing of airline services, mortal danger with road transportation and the murderous visitations of known and unknown gunmen have altered many of the geopoltical assumptions of the past 20 years. For the February 2023 presidential election, I think that Peter Obi is a game-changer with realistic vision, forward and strategem.                                                                                                                                Dr. Chido Nwangwu, author of the forthcoming 2022 book, MLK, Mandela & Achebe: Power, Leadership and Identity., is Founder of the first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper on the internet, USAfricaonline.com, and established USAfrica in 1992 in Houston. He has appeared as an analyst on CNN, ALJazeera, SKYnews, and served as an adviser on Africa business to Houston’s former Mayor Lee Brown. Follow him on Twitter @Chido247

1 COMMENT

  1. Nothing short of RESTRUCTURING will soothe the throes of revolutionary social change long experienced by the citizens.

    Yesterday, there a picture of purported meeting held in London included Obasanjo, Peter Obi; governors, Nyesom Wike of Rivers State; Seyi Makinde of Oyo state; Okezie Ikpeazu, Donald Duke and Samuel Ortom of Benue State. Enough damage has been done by the same giggling actors in that picture. They must be called to account for their deeds. It will not be easy to forgive and forget. And with buffoons like Ikpeazu and Wike in that mix – the situation becomes more exasperating. I can excuse Ortom for his gallantry and Donald Duke to a certain extent, however, the rest are part and parcel of the destitution ravaging the nation.

    By the way, why has LONDON become our political capital? Are they merely running away from the insecurity in the country or needing to be a stone throw from the CPU units of their medical facilities?

    Peter Obi, should cease and desist from dancing with these wolves. The ethos of the new era – characteristic spirit of culture manifested in its beliefs and aspirations of the Revolutionary Youth – demands a clean-sheet. To lead it, you must be above board – in kind and in deed – no room for explanation.

    His rabid fan base will not spare me the air to rent out what I and many have observed are the Achilles heel of his trending descend to oblivion. That he appears very VAPID – can be discerned by the blind. He has to learn, therefore, how to carry a short stick to avoid the axe of diminishing marginal utility. In a short word, he needs to quit the habit of answering every question or responding to every gossip in the media.

    I don’t blame him, but his OBIDient organization for the WOEFUL packaging of their candidate. Believe me, this new generation are concerned about change, however, visuals play important factor in their decision making. If you listened to the NBA forum early in the week, you will agree that even Shettima’s performance was more receptive to this age group. Obi on the other hand, in his flat monotone, sounded like a broken record played over a gramophone (if you are old enough to know this instrument).

    His high-pitch and flat-toned delivery, was annoying – to say the least. Atiku was more articulate in enumerating his agenda and experience. I was expecting the one zinger to counter this from Obi, but it never came! Can you imagine if he looked Atiku in the EYE and replied: YOUR EXPERIENCE LED US TO THE PRESENT PREDICAMENT … that the results of this experience are responsible for the insecurity, unemployment, and dire status of the nation state. And that it will be hypocritical to put the blame solely on the Buhari administration which he was one of it’s foundational Vuvuzelas.

    Instead of these counters, Obi continued with the same old/stale Anambra stories. Forgetting that Nigeria is a bigger landscape, therefore, his magic-wand philosophy of fixing everything under the sun is untrue and illusionary. You have to deal with the almajiri issues and other destitution hovering over the nation. These are massive issues that are way beyond the realm of anyone who ascends that position.

    In summary, his managers need to put him through the car-wash to polish his deliveries. He needs a speech therapist and intensive vocal makeover to avoid this looming descent, regardless of his purity or substance.

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