MINISTER of State, FederalÂ Ministry of Niger-Delta Affairs, and Elder Godsday Orubebe has said he was not at loggerheads with the minister of Niger-Delta Affairs, Chief Ufot Ekaette, as insinuated by the Warri-Ijaw Peace Monitoring Group (WIPMG), which recently called for Ekaetteâ€™s removal from office.
Orubebeâ€™s special assistant, media, Ekenwan Akwangbe in a press statement, weekend, said, â€œThe attention of the minister of state, Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder Godsday Orubebe, has been drawn to a news report in the Vanguard edition of Thursday, December 17, 2009, entitled â€œGroup calls for Ekaetteâ€™s removalâ€ page 7 and The Punch issue of Friday, December 18, 2009.
â€œThe said publications, purportedly by the Warri Ijaw Peace Monitoring GroupÂ (WIPMG) and signed by its chairman, one Patrick Bigha among other things, canvassed for the sack of Chief Ufot Ekaette as the minister of Niger Delta Affairs.
Among other issues, the group alleged that Chief Ekaette ‘is high handed and has denied the minister of state in the Ministry, Elder Godsday Orubebe the opportunity to carry out his duty.’
The minister of state, Elder Godsday Orubebe wishes to state very categorically that Chief Ufot Ekatte is a highly respected leader in Nigeria, especially in the Niger Delta.
That since fate brought them together to work as minister and minister of state respectively, he has had no cause to have any problems whatsoever with him. That instead, he has drawn a lot from the wealth of experience of Chief Ekaette who has served his fatherland for upward of forty years.
That as an African, heÂ reveres the age of Chief Ufot Ekaette and not take things for granted because they hold the same political office.â€