By Agba Okeme Abraham
As the 2019 general elections draw near, political players and followers are drumming support for their preferred candidates. Yours truly, a bona fide son of the Urhue Ruling House made up of Mereje district I & II, Okpe Local Government Area having examined the political distribution of elective positions and appointments in the three local government areas constituting Okpe/Sapele/Uvwie Federal Constituency since 1999 till date, equity smiles on Okpe Local Government Area to produce the next member representing the constituency in the forth coming general election.
Recall that Barr. Dumi from Sapele 1999 – 2003 represented the constituency, in 2003 – 2007 Chief Napoleon, Okpe Local Government Area, 2007 – 2011 it was Hon. Joyce Overah from Sapele and 2011 till date Hon. Evelyn Oboro from Uvwie Local Government. It is expected that her tenure will end in 2019.Meaning that both Sapele and Uvwie had two shots at the seat each. Hence, it would be repugnant to natural justice, equity and good conscience for Sapele and Uvwie local government areas to field candidates against Okpe Local Government Area’s interest in our great party, the Peoples Democratic Party’s primaries election later in the year.
Suffice it to remind candidates from Sapele Local Government Area that Okpe have been playing a role of big brother to them as brothers and sons of great Okpe, son of Prince Ivboze (Igboze), by conceding the ticket to Sapele L.G. twice.
It is however worthy of note that while equity beckoned on Okpe to nominate commissioner representing Okpe/Sapele/Ethiope West in Delta State Oil and Minerals Producing Areas Commission, DESOPADEC, in current board, Okpe was denied in favour of Hon. Jonathan Amiteye from Sapele L.G. despite the fact that the LG has previously occupied same position through Chief Joseph Ejigba 2007 – 2011, in the name of brotherhood, Okpe leaders respected that decision.
But in this case,who and which local government gets the ticket to represent the constituency in 2019 is a settled matter. The ticket is Okpe to lose.
Hence I call on all aspirants from Sapele and Uvwie L.G.As to collapse and merge their campaign structures in solidarity with Okpe as reciprocity for Okpe’s kind gesture to them in the past.
While the Okpe ticket is none negotiable, the second issue needed to be addressed is that of which zone in Okpe would produce the candidate or annexed the ticket. As a historian and a believer of the doctrine of equity, it is necessary to appraise current political office holders spread in Okpe local government. Available fact mandated equity once again in favoring Mereje district/zone to produce the federal constituency candidate. Suffice it to note that there are four political zones in Okpe, namely Mereje, Ugholo, Esezi and Aghalokpe. Esezi zone has (one ward); (1) Commissioner for Works (2) Party Local Government Area Chairman (3) Local Government Vice Chairman (4) PDP Delta Central Women Leader
Ugolo zone: Here we have a working member representing Okpe state constituency, Delta State House of Assembly who brings honour to the Okpe Kingdom as a result of his political prowess and exploit as the Speaker, Delta State House of Assembly. This zone also have Secretary to the Local Government Area, Secretary to PDP Okpe Local Government Area/Chief of Staff to the Speaker, Delta State House of Assembly.
Aghalokpe zone: Okpe Local Government Council Chairman and Secretary Local Education Authority
Mereje zone: Despite Mereje being the stronghold of PDP and home to three frontline party leaders in the state in the persons of Professor Sam Oyovbaire, Chief Sir Tom Amioku and Chief Daniel Okoro, the zone has no position to show for its support. Thus, it would amount to political rape on the zone to concede the House of Representatives ticket to any other zone in Okpe who already had a fair share of elective and appointed political offices.
The good news is that we have a worthy son in the person of Hon. Henry Eyerafe (a.k.a Henry Titi), a technocrat cum politician who hails from Ekoko-Mereje town, in Mereje district, Okpe Local Government Area. He is a man with a populist driven ideology, a tested and trusted administrator with a heart of gold who avails himself to serve the good people of Okpe/Sapele/Uvwie in capacity as member representing our noble constituency in the green chamber as candidate of our great party in 2019 general election. Thus, I hereby enjoined my fellow party faithful, leaders to support Hon. Henry Eyarefe/Mereje ticket.
- Mr. Abraham, a historian, writes from Orerokpe, Delta State.