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Published On: Thu, Sep 13th, 2018

Ijaw, Itsekiri Youths Clash Over Delta South Senatorial Seat

LAGOS SEPTEMBER 13TH (URHOBOTODAY)-As pressure mounts ahead of 2019 general elections, the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), Western Zone, has lambasted Itsekiri, who are currently agitating for power rotation/sharing in Delta State, as violators of power rotation in Delta South Senatorial District.
IYC said the Ijaws were not against the gentleman rotational agreement of political offices in the district, but that the policy should be applicable to all political offices in the district.
The Ijaw youth group was reacting to claims by President of the Itsekiri National Youth Council (INYC), Comrade Agbateyiniro Weyinmi, that Senator James Manager’s fifth term ambition was a threat to the People’s Democratic Party’s (PDP) power rotation/zoning principle in Delta South Senatorial District.
A statement by chairman of IYC Western zone, Comrade Frank Akiefa, and his Secretary, Snr. Comrade Ebi Wonzu on Wednesday, said contrary to the claims of the Itsekiri group, there was no existing power rotation/zoning formula or principle codified anywhere in the district.
The group said from 2003 till date, aspirants and candidates from the other ethnic groups of Delta South Senatorial district: Itsekiri and Isoko have always contested with Senator Manager of the Ijaw and Isoko extraction.
IYC, which gave graphic details of its submissions, insisted that in 2003 during the PDP primaries, Senator Manager contested against Chief Adolor Okotie-Eboh (Itsekiri) and Senator Stella Omu (Isoko).
It added that in the main election in 2003, Senator Manager contested against Mr Okorodudu of the then Alliance for Democracy (Itsekiri) and defeated him, adding that Chief Okotie-Eboh eventually took Senator Manager to court and the case went up to the Supreme Court where Sen. Manager won.
According to the group, from 2003 to 2015 elections, a total of 22 Itsekiris have contested both primaries and main elections with Senator Manager even when Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, an Itsekiri, was governor of Delta State.
IYC, however, challenged the INYC to produce the evidence of the agreement and those who entered into the agreement on behalf of the Ijaw, Isoko, Itsekiri and Urhobo people of the district.
The group said it is hypocrisy to query the fifth term ambition of Senator Manager, but see it right for an Itsekiri who is seeking a sixth term in the Warri Federal Constituency seat from 1999 till date.
Reacting to threat by the INYC to regard all political agreements, compromises and resolutions reached as having been breached, IYC said that the Itsekiris have been the ones breaching all the political agreements reached with them as regards power-sharing and rotation in Warri.
Meanwhile, IYC noted that the threat by INYC to take legal steps to recognize Ogidigben as the headquarters of Warri South Local Government Area as against Ogbe-Ijoh, the constitutionally recognized headquarters, would be an exercise in futility.

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