Ben Dunno, Warri
A group, Warri North Unity Forum (WNUF) has alerted of an agenda by some political gladiators of Itsekiri extractions within the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the area to imposed their candidates over the popular choice of the Ijaw people in the forthcoming council polls.
Specifically, the lamented the plot of some Itsekiri political fathers from the area who are desperate to upturn the endorsement of Hon. Francis Abulu, by the Egbema council of elders for their personal unpopular candidates in the area.
The group in a statement signed by its Publicity Secretary Mr. Franklin Oniyeburutan, berated these Itsekiri political heavyweights from the area for masterminding such undemocratic move to suppress the wish of their people by undermining the integrity of their community leaders
The statement made available to newsmen in Warri yesterday read in part; “The attention of our body has been drawn to the subtle moves by three political heavyweights who are going for the jugular for their candidates in the March 6, 2021, Local Government Elections”.
“Obviously, these candidates have helped to maintain their political and economic base are about to be rewarded as one of them will likely be picked by the Governor for the job against popular opinion and the reasoned position of the Egbema Ijaw leaders”.
“Nevertheless, Francis Abulu remains a round peg in a round hole as a man that can call upon or approach anybody for the good of the masses when it matters”.
“If popularity and acceptance matter at all, then the three political heavyweights, in the persons of Godwin Ebosa, Hon. Micheal Diden (a.k.a. Ejele) and Alhaji Omoko, would have been more circumspect in their recommendation to the Governor, Dr. Ifenyi Okowa”.
“The three leaders and their three candidates are best described as struggling for the soul of the council area while ignoring what is best and acceptable in the circumstances. This is really worrisome”.
“It is also a pity that Ejele, Ebosa and Alhaji Omoko have repeatedly rebuffed the consensus arrangement by Egbema Leaders and other well-meaning Itsekiri leaders, who belive that the Egbema Ijaw Leaders opinion should be respected”.
“With so many challenges confronting governance, it is the view of the Forum that leaders must think of the temperament of their actions and their consequences regarding what is in the best l interest and future good of the people”.
“Since the eight-man initial shortlist could not fly, they then narrowed it down to one aspirant for each of the heavyweights”.
“Their expectation is that whichever way it goes, it is the same political family. The interest of the greater majority is of no consequence”!
“The Forum, therefore, urge His Excellency, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa to put the interest of the people and the fear of God as uppermost in deciding between the consensus candidate, Francis Abulu and the three fingers”
“Nonetheless, the Forum expressed it’s readiness to support Ejele in the 2023 Senate race if he conceded to the greater good around the consensus arrangement”.
“It noted that when he was appointed by our dear Governor as DESOPADEC boss, the forum prevailed on Ijaws from other local government areas to allow him be because of his support for Senator James Manager immediately after the 2019 primaries. It was exampliary. The entire Egbema Leaders praised him at that time”.
“Therefore, it is our take that he should not use his closeness to the Governor to rock the boat. Of what use is it to give with the right and take back with the left? The goat and the rope should be allowed to go with the buyer”.
“The Forum views the aforementioned recommendation to the Governor as a political coup d’etât against the Egbema people after 27 years; when they thought they had finally got their freedom, then comes a knee on their neck, a perfect plot for failure and later reference point: to ask us what we did with the power when we got it”.
“To avoid that unwanted scenario, wise counsel must prevail in the consensus arrangement”, the group warned.