Two features have invariably come to define the character of state power in politically backward societies – absolutism and arbitrariness. Access to power does not just guarantee livelihood but also guarantees life itself.

For anyone outside the spheres of power, even personal safety is imperiled. And for all who operate within power corridors, the end to power is power and the means to power is power. And because this power which is never subject to moral and juridical restraints is also jealous of its own kind, politics is not just a zero-sum game but more importantly a poster boy for brutal rivalries. This is what African political scientists, especially of the Leftist orientations represented by Claude Ake and Hamza Alavi, often describe as the theory of post-colonial states.

There is no better prism, to be sure, of viewing the unwarranted disputations that have lately riddled the office of the Vice Chancellor of the Imo State University than the above hypotheses. Since the inception of the Rebuild Imo Administration of Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, a lot of party men and kinsmen have rather chosen to reintroduce into Imo the very same ills which we had collectively fought and defeated in the ruinous misrule of Chief Rochas Okorocha. The urbanity, statesmanship, democratic proclivity and unparalleled moral suavity of Governor Ihedioha are things which some of these elements exploit to speak and act when the Governor has neither spoken nor acted. It is high time they were called out, gagged, checked and gotten rid of.

Education is never a political question. It belongs to the socio-cultural sphere. It spells doom when career politicians invade the school system and begin to intimidate a sitting Vice Chancellor simply because of their membership of the party in power, political appointment or affinity with the Governor.

There is nothing despicable the incumbent Vice Chancellor of IMSU, Prof. Adaobi Obasi, has not stomached in the hands of these political jackals. First, they had practised “the Shock Doctrine” on her by coming all out to declare her position vacant and even went ahead to anoint her successor.

When they saw that Governor Ihedioha was not willing to do their bidding, they resorted to intimidation. Every now and then, these fellows invade the citadel of learning with one patently overvalued proposal or another, dropping the name of the Governor as their sender. Politicization of education is not just a sin against civilization but an atrocity of unspeakable proportion against the future of our children. And this must stop in Imo forthwith. It must stop and must never happen again.

Even internally, these fellows have recruited some willing-tool staff who for just the promise of undeserved promotions have elected to conspire with individuals who are sorely deficient in character and rich in mischief to unseat the ostensibly best Vice Chancellor IMSU has ever had.

Anyone conversant with the state of things in IMSU before the coming of Prof. Obasi cannot help being enraged by the activities of these folks. At a point in the history of that school, virtually all the key courses lost accreditation by the relevant rating boards. When the tyranny of Rochas Okorocha decreed a pay cut for Imo workers, this Vice Chancellor fought her way through and ensured that IMSU staff got fully paid.

It is testimony to her moral rectitude and commitment to staff welfare that only IMSU escaped that nefarious policy of Okorocha. As a consummate professional and epitome of academic excellence, Prof. Obasi has infused that institution with a sense of decency, academic rigour and value for education, so that the IMSU of today has not just been rebranded but has undergone an all-encompassing transformational change. That social vices have taken a nosedive today at IMSU is further a tribute to the loftiness of her social vision.

The conspirators must learn that there is a limit to politics. They must learn from the experience of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and the consequences of the ouster of Prof. Frank Ndili, a forthright man, by conspirators in 1985. UNN knew no peace, saw no light and witnessed no development until 2004 when Prof. Chinedu Nebo was made Vice Chancellor. According to Prof. Nebo, an ordained cleric, he saw darkness everywhere upon resumption of office, and he began by recalling Prof. Ndili and tendering official apologies to him for what was done to him. Thenceforth, the story of UNN changed and its lead among the comity of varsities was reestablished.