By Emma Amaize
WARRIâ€”REPENTANT militant leader, High Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, on Wednesday shocked the people of Burutu local government area of Delta State with an unannounced visit to the area to inspect and find out whether the people were not getting the dividends of democracy from government, as alleged by a group.
The group, Patriotic Movement of Burutu Local Government, led by ComradeÂ Napoleon Kenerekedi, with Mr. Gilbert Ekemiefa as Secretary, had recently alleged that the council chairman, Mr. Frank Zuokumor, was not performing and called on Ijaw leader, Chief Edwin Clark, Minister of State for Niger-Delta, Elder Godsday Orubebe, Tompolo and others, to call him to order.
The group maintained in a fresh statement made available to Vanguard in Warri yesterday, that the Chairman was treatingÂ residents of the area as aliens and that he deployed soldiers in the council headquarters to stop people who wanted to see him from gaining access after he resumed work on December 1.
Vanguard gathered that Tompolo told the people who came to receive him that part of the reasons for his visit was to thank them for the support they gave him during his days in the creeks to draw governmentâ€™s attention to the their sufferings.
However, the visit turned out to be a blessing in disguise for the chairman, Hon. Zuokumor, as representatives of some of the communities in the area lauded him for his human -oriented developmental projects in Burutu.
Chief T.M. Binebai and Mr. Arekade-owei Christmas told Tompolo, â€œWe, the elders, youthâ€™s group and women are overwhelmed with the developmental strides of the council chairman in the past one year.
We have not had it well with past local government chairmen in terms of development. What this young man has done is an eye- opener to any in-coming council chairman. He has built road, health centres, foreshore walls, schools and so onâ€.
The managing director of Akewa Group of Companies, Chief Kenneth Donye whose conglomerate bought over the Burutu Ports said since Zuokumor took over the mantle of leadership in the council, there has been constant power supply from the self- generating power plant in the council headquarters, adding, â€œI know how much it cost to run such big plant because that is what I used in generating power in my companyâ€.