Charles Dukwe: Nigeria’s Loss, South Sudan’s Gain (Part 1)

Posted: April 23, 2016 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Business, Commentary, Contributing Writers, Economy, Opinion Articles, Opinion Writers

This is a friendly rejoinder to an article, “Charles Dukwe, a national security threat, must be deported back to Nigeria” by By Reech Malual-Akumric on April 16, 2016

By Lawrence Renzo, Juba, South Sudan

south sudan, cursed or blessed

south sudan, cursed or blessed

April 23, 2016 (SSB)  —-  Most often than not, development is always a function of missed or seized opportunities. While African countries are repeatedly known for missing out on great opportunities, the Asian tigers have become richly developed because they seized their opportunities when they came. Opportunities as they say come in unclear and not so obvious packages and only the discerning will identity and partake.

On the 11th Of January 2011 while the referendum was being passed to a new nation in South Sudan, in a very different country, a young African, Charles Dukwe who had just returned from the United States to Nigeria was declaring the beginning of a series of private sector driven ideas to make the grossly under developed yet abundantly blessed African nation become what he termed a “New Nation”. His ideas were quickly embraced by the teeming youth population in the country and his highly motivational public speaking skills drew hundreds of thousands to his message of employing the forces of average citizen stakeholder status in national development, empathy driven innovation, fiscal conservatism and compassionate capitalism to bring transformative economic and infrastructural change to Nigeria. He commanded unbelievable loyalty, admiration and respect from across multi tribes in the very tribal line nation where everyone from a different tribe is viewed with skepticism.

This led to his now extremely popular “new nation” becoming the first indigenous company (apart from banks) to have office presence in the entire Nigeria’s 36 states and the FCT (Federal Capital Territory, Abuja). His umbrella drew all segments of the society together from the educated to illiterates, rich to poor and elite to the downtrodden. His weekly radio address on development issues became the most listened to program on the radio for many months. He created thousands of jobs, built a government road with his own resources, sponsored the speedy release of unjustly held prisoners, gave away over 12 vehicles as reward to staff, created the first indigenous cooperative style oil and gas company for women, began initiatives to support the elderly, inspired millions and gave hope to the hopeless. Everything was moving according to plan and the dream of changing Nigeria through the power of the private sector as done in the US and other developed countries was on course. Then the typical tragedy synonymous with Africa, struck!

A few people in the country who felt he was becoming too popular and could be nursing political ambitions to become President (though he is not even old enough to contest for such office and has said repeatedly that he has no political ambitions) set out series of attacks using law enforcement to frustrate him. Quite frankly, a memo was captured through the State Security in Kaduna State in Nigeria to “Frustrate the machinery of Charles Dukwe’s new nation movement”. Bogus charges were trumped up and he with his team of lawyers were going from one court to the other winning each case after many months of time wasting. His accounts were frozen, unfrozen, frozen and unfrozen again by countless agencies leading to delays in staff salaries, keeping of promises to customers, contractor fulfillment and much more. These led to bad name calling resulting from disappointments unknown to those disappointed that their frustrations were coming from government agencies not Charles Dukwe and his team. The organization continued to suffer while the visionary leader continued to muster strength to carry on until he could no longer carry on with the vision in Nigeria. However, despite being acquitted of ALL accusations and all the organization’s bank accounts released by the highest body in the country (EFCC- the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission), the American trained social entrepreneur left Nigeria believing that the country was unworthy of his passion and commitment to development and sought another African country he will use to showcase the efficacy of his ideas.

On a few months period of rest in Nairobi, Kenya with very little business pursuit, Charles Dukwe discovered the Republic of South Sudan through a South Sudanese lady- Joyce Iyang Malik whom he met and who loved his development ideas while he continued to share them in Nairobi. On very detailed research employing all resources at his disposal, Dukwe understood all there is to know about South Sudan’s state of development and was able to pin down a series of solutions because strangely the problems he had proffered solutions to in Nigeria who is supposedly over 50 years older than South Sudan was the same as the young nation. From gross unemployment to lack of infrastructure, food insecurity, insecurity of lives and property, too much dependence on oil and gas, energy producing nation yet without electric power, gross shortage of housing, gender inequality, poor educational system, rising corruption, and many more, the similarities between South Sudan and Nigeria was shocking to Charles Dukwe. He also realized that the referendum for the new nation South Sudan was passed on the same day he himself was declaring a new nation movement in Nigeria. This to him was more than a coincidence!

On February 11th 2016, Charles Dukwe was granted visa by the South Sudan embassy in Nairobi to come and explore his development and business findings in South Sudan. On the 11th of March 2016, he arrived Juba, the nation’s capital accompanied by Joyce Malik and marched straight to the Office of the President, Republic of South Sudan with a clear proposal to avoid yet another misinterpretation of his intentions. His organization has since not only gotten the nod but has also been duly registered with office on Airport road and his appeal driven by his compassionate capitalism ideology has started to grow.

Since our most welcoming national government has promised to give Charles Dukwe and his now named “United Coalition for Africa”(UCA) functioning through “Project Empower South Sudanese”(PESS) the enabling environment he did not get in Nigeria so he can fulfill his vision, we will continue to publish the progress of this mission on this newspaper in various parts until we see the reality of his statement last week that “We will make South Sudan, the African Model state comparable to any developed nation in the world and NO South Sudanese will ever be seen on the streets begging. Nigeria’s loss will be South Sudan’s gain”.

To be continued…………………………………………………..

You can reach the author via his email:

The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity of any claim made are the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël: South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB) website. If you want to submit an opinion article or news analysis, please email it to SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing.

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