From Paul Osuyi, Asaba
The Ndokwa nation of Delta State has threatened to institute a legal action against Governor Ifeanyi Okowa over alleged neglect of the area in the distribution of infrastructure across the state.
Specifically, the people of Ndokwa land comprising Ndokwa East, Ndokwa West and Ukwuani local government areas, are miffed by the recent executive bills seeking the upgrade of three tertiary institutions to full fledge universities.
Okowa, in the recent executive bills to the state House of Assembly wants the upgrade of the College of Education Agbor, to University of Education; Anwai Campus of the Delta State University, to Delta State University of Science and Agriculture; and Delta State Polytechnic, Ozoro, to Delta State University of Science and Technology.
But the people of Ndokwa are protesting that none of the new universities is cited in their area despite producing huge mass of the oil and gas resources that contribute to the 13% oil derivation fund accruing to the Delta State Government.
In a letter dated January 29, 2021 and addressed to Governor Okowa, Ndokwa people demanded an additional bill for the citing of a university in the area with immediate effect.
Signed on behalf of the people by Evans Uteli, the letter alleged that the area was completely schemed out last December when the state government approved the construction of 13 roads, and called for a review of the approved road for the area to be included.
The letter stated that it would amount to gross socio-economic injustice to leave Ndokwa land “without any meaningful developmental project as this will amount to lack of inclusiveness in governance especially when the area contributes immensely to the revenue generation of the state.”
Besides, it argued that Ndokwa nation is the second largest population and second largest oil producing area in the , insisting that the area cannot be secluded from the construction of roads in the state.
It therefore demanded that the state government should “review the road construction projects with immediate effect and make the necessary adjustments to include roads in Ndokwa/Ukwuani land in the projects to avoid protest, social unrest and/or legal action.
“That we hereby call on the Delta State Governor, His Excellency, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa to send an additional bill to the Delta State House of Assembly to site a University with immediate effect in Ndokwa/Ukwuani land and sufficient road constructions among other things to demonstrate inclusiveness in governance, equity and justice.
“That henceforth, the Federal and State Government should consider Ndokwa/Ukwuani land in their policies and give her a pride of place, deserving of it in the scheme of things for the purposes of economic integration and social justice.
“That we urge the the Delta State Government to look into our demands and respond to this letter within the next fourteen (14) days, failing which we shall have no other option than to proceed against the state to seek legal redress.”
It added that “this letter is hereby served on you as a pre-action notice”