EITHER by happenstance, benevolence of nature or by purely divine design, Ndokwa nation is unique and of strategic importance to Delta State.
This, however, is without prejudice to the contributions and significance of other ethnic nationalities in the oil-rich state. Considering the fact that all other ethnic nationalities in Delta State are part of Ndokwa nation by cultural and geographical configuration, one cannot help but yield to the temptation of describing the Ndokwa nation as the political and cultural nucleus of Delta State.
The description of Ndokwa nation as the central part of Delta State is not merely in terms of cultural homogeneity with, and habitation by all other ethnic groups in Delta State such as the Isokos, Itsekiris, Ijaws and Urhobos. Physical features, climatic conditions and natural endowments further lend credence to the above truism, hence the ascription of the status of a miniature Delta State to the Ndokwa ethnic nationality.
Also based on its geographical location, Ndokwa nation is a cultural bridge to Ikas, Aniocha and Oshimili parts of Delta State. I think, based on its location, you find in Ndokwa land that diverse languages such as Isoko, Ijaw and Urhobo are commonly spoken in the same breath as Igbo language of Ika, Aniocha and Oshimili. Accident of location has promoted deep cultural intercourse that led over time to marriages and such unions that strengthen unity.
Furthermore, the presence of rain and mangrove forest, savannah and desert in the region; features which other ethnic nations and groups do not possess holistically but in parts, shows that Ndokwa nation has it all. It will amount to stating the obvious by mentioning the large deposit of valuable minerals such as crude oil and very high quality gas in the area as this is already common knowledge.
Ndokwa literally translates to peace as depicted by the calm mien, kind hospitality and peaceful disposition of an average Ndokwa man and woman. However, for the benefit of those who may not have any knowledge or the background information of the Ndokwa nomenclature, Ndokwa nation, as it is presently constituted, is the summation of the old Aboh Division.
It is for administrative convenience and for the purpose of reflecting and identifying the sub-divisions to make up the Aboh Division that the name was changed from Aboh Division to “Ndokwa”, a nomenclature coined out from “Ndoshimili”, the riverine axis of the old Aboh Division and “Ukwuani” the upland axis of the Aboh Division.
It is also imperative to, at this juncture, point out the fact that the nomenclatures: “Ukwuani” and “Ndosimili” do not in any way portray any division between the two groups, for you cannot raise one without lifting the other.
Delta State and indeed the Nigerian nation have scored tremendous achievements in all spheres of our democratic constructions since the beginning of the Fourth Republic in 1999, in spite of the challenges. It is worrisome, however and to a reasonable extent, unfair and unequitable, that back to the era of the Mid-Western Region, Bendel State and since the creation of Delta State in August 1991, no son or daughter of Ndokwa extraction has presided over the affairs of Delta State as the Chief Executive in spite of the pride of place and strategic cultural and economic importance of the Ndokwa ethnic nationality.
In-as-much as I praise the efforts and sagacity of those making a case for a Delta State Governor of Delta North extraction come 2015 on the basis of equity and fairness, the emphasis ought to, and should be on the axis of Ndokwa nation. It is only in a Delta State Governor extraction in 2015 that equity and fairness would have been maximally attained.
Ndokwa nation has credible sons and daughters; intellectuals, seasoned administrators and managers of human and material resources who are experienced and vast in governance and administration. This, therefore, is a passionate appeal for equity and fairness on all relevant stakeholders and political actors in Delta State not to allow any “golden weight”, whatsoever, to turn the scale of fairness and equity in their sight in the 2015 Ndokwa Agenda in Delta State.
The leader of the ruling party in Delta State and our amiable Governor, His Excellency, Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan (CON) is a man of positive history. 2015 is yet another opportunity of adding a beautiful feather to his well-decorated cap of achievements. Dr. Uduaghan would have written his name in gold if his successor emerges from the Ndokwa axis of Delta North Senatorial district because it has never happened before; not even a Deputy Governor.
The message therefore is a Delta State Governor of Ndokwa extraction and the time is 2015.
Mr. FELIX OSSAI, a political analyst, wrote from Lagos