You will suffer the same fate in 2019 – Okowa
By Emmanuel Aziken, Political Editor
Leading chieftains of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Delta State, Chief Great Ogboru and Senator Ovie Omo-Agege have blasted the Senator Ifeanyi Okowa led state administration for turning democracy in its head in the conduct of the January 6 local government elections.
The duo in a joint statement particularly frowned at what they described as the donation of electoral victories to the governor’s friends in the APC as a senseless act of rigging vowing that his efforts would not in any way deliver him from the onslaught of the people in the forthcoming state and national elections in 2019.
The governor in a sharp riposte accused Ogboru and Omo-Agege of sitting back in Lagos and Abuja during the LG election campaigns challenging them to give an example of where they campaigned before the election. Governor Okowa affirmed that what they suffered in the local government election is already an indication of what would happen to them in the 2019 polls.
The statement from Ogboru and Omo-Agege was in response to the local government elections conducted by the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission, DSIEC in which the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP won all 25 chairmanship positions on offer and all but a sprinkling of the councillorships.
Noting that result sheets for the election were held back by the PDP forcing resistance from the people, the APC duo in their statement said:
“There was no voting or credible election in virtually all the LGAs. Nevertheless, by the next day, DSIEC wrote and announced fake election results in favour of PDP in 23 LGAs and rescheduled elections for 2 LGAs – Ughelli North and Ethiope East.
“Having boycotted the rescheduled polls, it is therefore surprising that DSIEC somehow purportedly declared some APC Councillorship candidates as winners in the rescheduled elections in some Wards in Ughelli North and Ethiope East LGAs. These results are as invalid as they are fraudulent and fictitious. They are products of senseless rigging and do not reflect the will of the relevant electorates in Ughelli North and Ethiope East.
“Let it be on record that we are not part of any subterranean attempt to give false legitimacy to the sham elections. It is alleged that some APC friends of Senator Ifeanyi Okowa went to negotiate in the dark for some chairmanship and councillorship slots for themselves. If true at all, we condemn it in the extreme. If that is what gave Okowa the belief that the easiest way to legitimise the flawed elections is to donate undeserved electoral victories to select APC leaders, including us who are from Ughelli North and Ethiope East LGA (where elections where rescheduled), then he must have a rethink. We are not interested in such an embarrassing Greek gift – intended to cause confusion in the ranks of the Delta APC?
“The reality of today is that the new Delta APC will defeat PDP in at least 18 LGAs of the 25 LGAs in Delta in credible elections. Okowa surely knows he cannot win a credible election in any ward in the political epicenter of Delta State – Central Senatorial District. Therefore, it is an insult for him to pretend to own and donate electoral victories. The corrupt conducts of DSIEC cannot confer electoral strengths on Okowa and the PDP. They are too unpopular.”
Okowa responding yesterday through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Charles Aniagwu said:
“When we were busy campaigning across the nook and cranny of the 25 local government areas, they sat down in Lagos and Abuja busy drinking champagne rather than talking to the electorate. Let them give us an example of a local government that they visited to campaign and now the people having listened to our plea in addition to our demonstration of the number of projects that the governor has succeeded in executing in the 25 local governments, would they think that our people would make the mistake of voting for them when they never showed up in the field.
“We will tell them that what they saw in the local government election is just an indication of what will likely be in 2019. We urge them to join us in the ship of building a better state because a peaceful and a united Delta can only lead to a more prosperous Delta.
“Delta State is home to the umbrella, we don’t need any broom around here, they are very free to go and wave broom in other states. Our people need the umbrella to cover them from the hardship coming from the way the national economy is being run. When the rain comes, they need the umbrella, when the sun comes, they need the umbrella.”