A Chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Hon. Sunday Frank Oputu has faulted as ‘irresponsible and show of ingratitude’ the allegation leveled against the Northern Governors over the allege sponsorship of the Senator Heineken Lokpobiri legal battle against the party over the September 4th party Governorship primary in the state and provocation of division among the people of the Niger Delta region.
The Deputy Publicity Secretary of the APC, Yekini Nabena, had weekend alleged that the former Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri is being used as a pawn by some northern governors including Kebbi and Jigawa State Governors to further their 2023 political aspirations.
Nabena, who declined to identify the names of the two Northern Governors, warned against subterranean moves by two governors from the northern part of the country to extend their sphere of influence to the Niger Delta region.
But in a reaction yesterday, a chieftain of the Party from Southern Ijaw Local Government, Hon. Sunday Frank-Oputu, described the allegation against the Northern Governors as irresponsible and a show of ingratitude by the Deputy National Publicity Secretary and his sponsors, “it is obvious that he doesn’t know his role and that of his sponsor within the APC.”
Frank-Oputu, who revealed the identity of the State Governors being accused by Yekini Nabena as Governors of Kebbi and Jigawa States, Mohammadu Badaru Abubakar and the Abubarkar Atiku Bagudu, said the allegation is unfortunate and is a clear case of ingratitude to those that came to the state to assist the party to win the just concluded governorship elections.”
“I believe their contributions played key role in the success achieved today, but this same man went round to say that they are sponsoring Sen. Lokpobiri. The issue about Sen. Lokpobiriis that he is seeking for justice. He contested the primaries of the party and won, the officials did something else in a hotel instead of at the party secretariat where the constitution of party stipulated that the results be collated.”
Oputu warned the Deputy National Publicity Secretary to come out with the truth over the reasons for the sudden outburst and irresponsible claims against the Northern Governors,” They told the Northern Governors to talk to Sen. Lokpobiri but since they refused by telling them that it is better the Court handles it, they have become their enemies. The Governors should be left out of this. They don’t have time for the internal matters of Bayelsa APC. Everybody is interested in what the Court of Appeal will decide.”
Hon. Frank-Oputu however challenged the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, the National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomole and the Governor-elect, Chief David Lyon, to come out with the decisions reached during the presentation of Lyon to President Muhammadu Buhari.
Frank-Oputu claimed that despite the twisted claims handed to Bayelsans by the delegations of Sylva, Oshiomole and Lyon during the last meeting with President Buhari,”they came up with a deceitful claim that Buhari has given them the assurance that he will call Sen. Lokopobiri to order for him to withdraw his case from court.”
“But President Buhari is not that kind of person. When they talk of integrity Nigerians should believe me. From available source, President Buhari told them that anybody that is not satisfied with the Governorship primaries should be allowed to seek redress in court and not ferment trouble at the party secretariat. And that the Court be allowed to pronounce the true winner. He (Buhari) made it clear that he will not interfere in the internal matters and will always say go to court and defend your course.”
“Nobody should use his name to talk to any aggrieved person. If he was that kind of person, he would have done same in Zanfara and Rivers States. The case filed by Sen. Lokpobiri is very much alive and I want to assure Bayelsans that Lokpobiri will emerge winner and be sworn-in by Febuary.”
Oputu called on Nabena and his sponsors to stay focused on preparing defence against the multiple litigations against the Deputy-Governorship-elect, the Governor-Elect, ”instead of provoking and calling people names inspite of the help rendered to the party to win the election. They should stop calling people names and sponsoring disunity in the party.”
“Lokpobiri is not causing disunity in Nigeria, Niger Delta or Bayelsa. He is only seeking justice in an election he won squally. He scored the highest votes and as such he is the legitimate winner of the September 4th exercise. Yekini should know he is playing to the galary, if only he knows the position he holds within the party and he would not be behaving like a misfit. He should look beyond what he is getting now, Lokpobiri will be sworn-in.”