AUSTIN OYIBODE, EDITOR
The Delta state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has gathered an array of political heavyweights to wrestle the coveted seat of power from Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The political heavyweights include former Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan, who has been chosen to lead the party to victory in the state; Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, a former PDP chieftain and aspirant who lost out to Great Ogboru in the primaries; Ibe Kachikwu, minister of state for petroleum; Ovie Omo-Agege, Delta central senator and senatorial candidate and a host of others who have been baptized and given a marching order to lead the party and ensure a resounding victory at the general elections.
The gang-up was cemented on Friday, January 11, 2019 at the inauguration of the APC campaign council where former Governor Uduaghan was given the mandate to be leader of the council, knowing that the former governor, having been at the helm of affairs for eight years, more especially having been the architect of the failure of Ogboru in the past elections, he has what it takes to unseat the sitting government of the state.
At the inauguration of the APC campaign council, Uduaghan, who received baptism of fire by many for leading the war against Ogboru’s failure in the previous elections, assured the APC candidate that this time around, the coast is clear and that he would be governor of the state.
Uduaghan told the people that converged at Orchid hotels that the failure of Ogboru in the previous elections was due to the fact that Ogboru did not know the road but now that he is with him in APC, he would be sworn in as governor on May 29, 2019.
Almost all the speakers who made presentations at the inauguration agreed that it was Uduaghan that made Ogboru to lose the previous elections, even as it was believed that Ogboru won the elections but was pushed out following his not having godfathers at the federal level.
Uduaghan, who tactically agreed that he was the brain behind the failure of Ogboru in the previous elections beginning from 2007 to 2015, said he is being accused of not allowing his brother to become governor.
According to him: “Ogboru could not win because he did not know the road. In 2015, I was begged to play anti-party so he could be governor but I could not. For me to hold his hand to victory, I must be in APC, now that I am here you will be governor.”
Ogboru, the APC guber candidate, said he had won elections several times but he was deprived, noting that Uduaghan had told him personally that he was the obstacle to his victory.
Elder statesman, Chief Frank Kokori, in his response, said the people of Delta state had suffered enough under PDP, noting that since 1999 that PDP has been in power, Delta people have been in pains and time has come for total liberation and freedom from suffering.
He said: “They have been sharing the money and we have been suffering. We have been in this battle since 1999. In 2007, we were deprived of our mandate. We won the election but at the end of the day, only God knows what happened. This will be the last election I’m going to stand as an opposition man. Next election, I will stand as father of government. We are tired of being in opposition in Delta state.”
On the issue of zoning, he queried: “Who made the agreement in Delta? For now, we don’t know anything called zoning. Again, we don’t want only one senator, we want three senators from Delta state.”
Senator Ovie Omo-Agege accused the opposition party at the central of wrecking the country while in power, saying that the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) hurriedly privatized the nation’s assets to their cronies and family members.
Omo-Agege, who has been an ardent supporter of Buhari, said if the PDP is allowed to return to power, they would scrap the N-power scheme of the President Buhari APC-led federal government which he claimed have empowered over 8, 000 Nigerians since it came into power since 2015.
He also expressed fear that if the PDP wins the presidential election, they would privatized the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), just as he bombarded the Ifeanyi Okowa-led administration of poor infrastructural development across the state, “look at our roads, schools, hospitals the Warri stadium.
However, other APC chieftains, some of whom contested the governorship primaries, Victor Ochei, Pat Utomi, O’tega Emerhor and Cyril Ogodo were conspicuously absent from the inauguration ceremony.