UPU ELECTION: Why Urhobos are Oppose to Omene’s Second Coming
By Roland Ejakpovwo
LAGOS DECEMBER 1ST (URHOBOTODAY)-Few days to Urhobo Progress Union (UPU) general election, there is apprehension among the Urhobos on who the delegates will be elected as President General of UPU.
They are praying to God to touch the mind of the delegates so as to cast their votes for a candidate who is ready to fight for the progress and development of Urhobo nation . A candidate who is ready to sacrifice is his wealth, time and connection for the development and growth of Urhobo nation.
A candidate who has both national and global contacts to rescue Urhobo nation from his present under developed status to a developed one. A candidate who will bring foreign investors to Urhobo land. A candidate who is non partisan. A candidate who is ready to give account of his stewardship. They do not want a candidate who will sell Urhobos in exchange for peanuts.
As the search to get a candidate with the aforementioned qualities for the top seat of UPU continues, investigation has however revealed that sons and daughters of Urhobo nation both within Nigeria and in Diapora have raised their voices against the second coming of Olorogun Joe Omene as the President General of UPU.
They argued that Joe Omene would have gain more respect and honour from his Urhobo brothers and sisters if he lives after expiration of his tenure, rather than trying to force himself against the wish of the people.
It is on record that Omene’s administration after the demise of General Aziza has been involved in one internal crisis or the other due to probably attempt to short change themselves that had left UPU in shreds and as such failed to provide the necessary socio-economical need for the people of the fifth largest tribe in Nigeria. This is so because a house divided against itself cannot stand.
Since the leadership of Mukoro Mowoe and other successors which included Chief J. Obahor; Chief John Okpodu; Chief T. E. A. Salubi and Chief F. O. Esiri who continued the traditions and projects initiated under Mukoro Mowoe report equally had it that Joe Omene’s period in UPU is the worst,
It is quite unfortunate that the successful reign of past UPU leaders since 1930 which brought in Unity, peace and socio-economical development among others to Urhobo nation have been rubbished by recent activities of the present executive led by Chief Joe Omene.
He is accused of being partisan, corrupt, lack of respect for traditional rulers, ideas to bring development, National and global personality to take Urhobos to next level.
Under present leadership of Omene, sons and daughters of Urhobo nation could be described as sheep without shepherd roaming about without anyone to guide them because the leader himself lacks visions on what to do about rescuing his people. Omene administration lacked the machinery of leadership quality and as such made his followers not only lose confident in him, but also in Urhobo nation.
The people of Urhobo nation is known and respected for the way and manner they honor their elders, cultural norms and traditional rulers. No responsible Urhobo sons and daughters will vote for a man with a curse on his head for rubbishing their royal fathers and dragging their kings to law courts like common criminals as Omene has done in the past.
Omene’s lack of respect for Urhobo traditional rulers further portrayed him as an impostor whose reign as UPU President-General has put a taint to the vision of the founding fathers of the apex Urhobo socio-cultural body and the successes recorded by past President General.
Urhobo people should take serious exception to the taboo being committed by Omene in Urhobo over his attack on Urhobo traditional rulers who have in the past years taken similar action that brought the likes of late Chief James Edewor and Chief Benjamin Okumagba to become President-General of UPU. What Joe Omene should understand is that the UPU constitution that is giving him confident to abuse Urhobos is for administrative convenience and not superior to the collective authority of our royal fathers.
In showing disrespect for Urhobo traditional rulers, Omene had gone to the extent of appointing and inaugurating a King for Urhobo community in Lagos, a duty to be perform by Urhobo kings. Just recently he inaugurated
Omene who described himself as a lion whom nobody can removed from office have gone solo by inaugurating new UPU branches both in Nigeria and Diaspora and approving in each new inaugurated branches four delegates to vote in the coming election. This is probably an attempt for him to win the coming election so as to fix himself permanently in office hence he had boasted that no one can remove him and his executive from office.
Suffice to refresh your memory that Joe Omene in attempt to drag UPU into politics breached the Uvwiamuge Declaration handed down by the UPU and which has been the organization working ordinance as a pan Urhobo group. The Uvwiamuge Declaration spelt out PDP and APC as the (MEGA) parties that Urhobo will work with if they field Urhobo sons as candidates, but along the way Omene appeared to have modified the declaration without the knowledge of others to include Labour Party which does not fall within the MEGA category by any standard. His action revealed total lack of respect for the general decision of Urhobo people.
It is also reported that during the last general election Omene in one of his clandestine moves to Aso Rock in Abuja was alleged to have collected over a billion naira from the PDP to announced the adoption by the UPU of ex-President Goodluck Jonathan. He had since denied the allegation
It is on record that the squabbles and disagreement that arose over the refusal of Chief Omene to disclose and share the alleged PDP Abuja election money resulted in the crack and split of his executive which could not be reconciled together until the Urhobo traditional rulers took the initiative to formally dissolve the exco.
Delegates who are expected to cast their at the UPU general election should caste their votes for the right candidate without sentiment. Your action will be for the growth and development of Urhobo nation, The choice is yours.
Urhobo Ovuo Vuo
Roland Ejakpovwo is an Abuja based journalist