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Published On: Sat, Jan 25th, 2020

UPU Crisis: Okowa Denies Omene’s Allegation


LAGOS JANUARY 25TH (NEWSRANGERS)-Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa has denied allegation made by former Urhobo Progress Union (UPU) President General, Chief Joe Omene accusing him of being responsible for the crisis rocking the Urhobo apex social-cultural group, UPU.
Reacting to the allegation, the commissioner for information, Mr. Charles Aniagwu, while emphasizing that the governor will not dabble into ethnic politics in any part of the state said that the Okowa-led administration is working day and night to add enduring value and build a stronger Delta.
“Well, our business (Okowa’s govt) is interested in governance. We don’t want to play politics with those who think playing politics is their part-time job. Our business is to govern.
“Governor Okowa is the governor of the entire state. He’s not an ethnic governor to begin to determine what happens in ethnic association or groups. Even in Anioma, the governor is not one who is interested in the politics of ethnic groups, ”he stated.
It would be recalled that the immediate past president-general of the UPU made the accusations while playing host to selected journalists recently.
According to him, the governor manipulated some Urhobo politicians to cause division in the UPU, before and during the 2015 elections in the state.
Omene, who still claimed to be factional leader of the UPU, said, “he (Okowa) manipulated the Urhobos to rubbish the UPU and it has never happened before. The only area Okowa has excelled is the number of SAs and SSAs that he has appointed. Okowa should stop using the traditional rulers for his personal ambition.
Responding to question if he has relinquished his leadership struggle of UPU President-General Omebe reacted, “I didn’t step down. UPU was set up to foster the growth of the Urhobo people. Olorogun Taiga is somebody Okowa brought because he felt I will not support him. Actually I will not support him not because I do not like him as a person, but because UPU was set up to foster the growth and development of the Urhobo people.
“As the President General of UPU, I cannot support a non-Urhobo. If I’m for the growth and development of Urhobo nation. There’s nothing they didn’t discuss with me and nothing they didn’t offer me. It’s not about money; the interest of my people most is paramount. That was why they gave Olorogun Taiga the UPU because they can control him. He (Taiga) kneels before Okowa. Okowa is behind the Urhobo crisis.”
He further described the recent award of honour to Gov. Okowa and former governor of the state, Chief James Ibori by the State Traditional Council, as a problem of “stomach infrastructure.”
Omene noted that the exemption of Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan that has no bearing on his performance because he (Uduaghan) did “better” than the current governor.
“The stomach infrastructure in this country is a problem. A situation where a former governor is thinking about stomach infrastructure again, it shows that we are in problem otherwise why will he (Ibori) accept to be honoured alongside Okowa?
“Now that Okowa has won his Supreme Court case, he should face governance. Let him go and work and impress his people. When you have such numbers of SSAs and SAs, you bring thugs into your government. When you have such numbers, do you expect the governor to perform? What level of advice do you think they can give to the government?
“Governor Uduaghan should not worry himself about that. Many people knew that Uduaghan did his best. He performed better than Okowa. If Okowa like he should get awards from here to Jericho, it’s his performance that matters. If you put Uduaghan and Okowa down, Uduaghan is more popular and he is no longer in government.
“When Ibori goes anywhere, he’s still popular despite having served jail terms. He is still popular if not for some of his recent behaviours. It’s the legacy you leave behind that matter. Uduaghan should be calm, not that he performed excellently, but he is a peace lover. If he wasn’t a peace lover, he would have been a senator.”

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