The Rice Man Of Edo Politics As Beautiful Bride

By Jim Pressman, Abuja

Remember the song: “Should I say no, should I say yeah”? That must be song on the lips of the most beautiful bride of Edo state politics which radical Obafemi Awolowo University – trained Barrister Kenneth Imansuangbon has become today.

The then youthful, lanky, fire-spitting, idealistic lawyer full of administration for the Justice Eshos and Gani Fawehinmis of the legal Bench and Bar whose photographs decorated his cozy little Practice he had set up behind the National Directorate for Employment Headquarters in Wuse Zone 1, only began talking politics when he muted to this reporter how he would raise N50 million for Chief Olu Falae’s Campaign for the Presidency…

He then ‘disappeared’ for a while from our fierce debates on the law and politics, and before you could say “who knows where to find Kenneth?” he resurfaced with the multi-campus Pace-Setters Private Secondary School in the Federal Capital Territory, for which he was better known, besides his favourite sport, football. For this, he already has an equally-popular Kenneth Imansuangbon Cup Series competed for by teams from schools all over the place.

Again, as the 2012 edition of the Cup Series was on, Imansuangbon was all over Edo state campaigning to bear the PDP governorship flag in the upcoming elections. The rest as they say is history…

Now, if reports of the frequent visits and pleas by ACN (ex-Labour Party) Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo state are anything to go by, Imansuangbon holds the ace in deciding which way the votes of the good people of the state will go, come election day for the governorship. The man they all fondly refer to as “The Rice Man” has become a folk hero thanks to his frequent distribution of bags of rice to the electorate over time since the smart man, Moshood Abiola-style, kicked off his political campaign long ago by meeting the poor people, Jesus-like, “at the point of their need.”

As a Yoruba adage goes, once you remove hunger from the list of wants of a man, abject poverty is half removed! Who can fault that, given Maslow’s list of man’s needs according to their order of priority? The masses in Edo say it is this man they will give their votes to, the one who has been feeding them while others kept the lid on their fat bank accounts and threw them dust and dirty water while driving past in rain or Harmattan. It makes sense.

PDP is worried about a possible last minute loss of Imansuangbon; so are the other parties. Where will Imansuangbon eventually pitch his tent, despite his huge investment of time energy and material wealth into PDP?

The answer is blowing in the political air, and we are all waiting, breath bated. Carry on, The Rice Man; you are the beautiful bride of Edo governorship politics today and Na ya time, biko! Make the best of it, but read the signs right and do not be tricked, used only to be dumped.

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