PAUL OSUYI, Asaba
Former governor of Delta State, James Ibori, on Friday re-affirmed his support for the possible re-election of the incumbent governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, for second term in March this year.
He said his undying support for Okowa stemed from his performance as governor in the past three years, and his respect and knowledge of the history of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
Ibori who said he was solidly behind Okowa spiritually and political, vowed that God would not allow anybody to truncate the existing rotational arrangement of the governorship position among the three senatorial districts.
The former governor who is regarded as the political godfather and foremost leader of the PDP in the state, spoke at Oghara, his hometown in Ethiope West Local Government Area during the official campaign flag-off of the party in the state ahead of the general elections.
Apparently aware of the threat of the main opposition party in the state, All Progressives Congress (APC) that is fielding an Urhobo man as governorship candidate against the much-touted, unwritten rotational agreement, Ibori urged his Urhobo kinsmen to stand behind Okowa and vote massively for him because of his performance and to respect the zoning arrangements.
“I want to address Okowa directly. There is no doubt in my mind that you have done very well, I can say that without equivocation. I have been a governor of this state for two terms, and with the constraints of governance, you (Okowa) have done exceedingly well. You have the capacity, integrity, intelligence and you deserve a second term.
“I am pleased with you because when I was away in 2015, you came to Oghara to launch your campaign, and today you are here to also flag-off your campaign for the second term. That shows that you know the history of our party. As the head of this political family, I declare and decree that you have all it takes to lead our people in this battle.
“Anybody planning evil, God will not let it happen. On my own, in my person as James Ibori, I am solidly behind you in prayers; I am solidly behind you in politics. The peace of this state is paramount; it is the turn of Delta North; let us allow Okowa for a second term,” he told his Urhobo kinsmen.
The rally witnessed the presentation of flags to the Okowa as the governorship candidate, three senatorial candidates, ten candidates for House of Representatives and 29 candidates for the state House of Assembly by the state party chairman, Kingsley Esiso.
Esiso who also addressed the rally, said the PDP was ready to win the presidential election with Atiku Abubakar as its presidential candidate.
He said the PDP and Atiku were on a rescue mission to salvage the country from the mis-governance of the APC-led Federal government of Muhammadu Buhari which he claimed, had plunged Nigerians into hunger, stagnation, killings and starvation.
Saying that Deltans are yearning to return Okowa for a second term, Esiso urged Nigerians to reject APC and all its candidates in the next general election.