A political pressure group, the Warri North Unity Forum, has lauded the decision of the Itsekiri people to cede the chairmanship position of Warri North Local Government Area of Delta State for the first time to the Egbema Ijaw in the March 6, 2021 local polls in the state, but kicked against alleged plot to handpick a particular Ijaw aspirant for the chairmanship position.
In a press statement signed by its Chairman, Prince Kofi Diete Esemighan and Secretary, Barrister Festus Eyenmi and made available to newsmen, the group claimed that there are plans by some elements to undermine the consensus agreement of some Egbema-Ijaw leaders and impose a particular Ijaw aspirant on the people rather than allowing a popular aspirant to run for the chairmanship position of Warri North Local Government Area.
The group while commending the Chairman of DESOPADEC, Chief Michael Diden Ejele and other Itsekiri leaders to concede the chairmanship position of Warri North Local Government Area to the Egbema Ijaw after 27 years of creation, advised those plotting to handpick a particular Ijaw aspirant for the chairmanship position to have a rethink and warned against imposition of a candidate on the people.
“We want to implore those elements plotting to handpick a particular Ijaw aspirant for the Warri North chairmanship position to listen to wise counsel in the consensus agreement of Egbema leaders around the candidacy of Mr Francis Bekesuode Abulu, a Special Assistant on Political to the Governor for the chairmanship position. Mr Abulu is the best man for the job. We wondered why these elements are doing things differently now. They should not listen to people who are telling them to hold on to the rope after selling the goat.
After 27 years of creation of Warri North Local Government Area, the Egbema people should be allowed to choose a candidate that the people will be proud of after his tenure and not an imposed candidate of regret”, they wrote.
While lamenting that they do not have the political connection to convince those bent on handpicking a particular Ijaw aspirant for the chairmanship position, the group advised them to allow the consensus agreement of Egbema Leaders on the Chairmanship position to sail through to avoid unnecessary tension in the area, adding that; “We should allow the aspiration of Mr Francis Bekesuode Abulu see the light of day as he is tested and trusted and people should not entertain any fear about him. Mr Abulu who served in 2014 during the Administration of former Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan as a member of the State Committee on Land Allocation will foster unity among the ethnic groups in the area if elected”.
The group expressed gratitude to the state Governor, Senator Dr Ifeanyi Okowa for his stand on justice for the people of Egbema, noting that it cannot be completed until the Consensus agreement is endorsed.
According to them; “This is a legacy that the Governor should not play with. The Governor should do the right thing now by calling on these elements who are out to cause tension and confusion to order. The consensus agreement of Egbema Leaders around the Chairmanship candidacy of Mr Francis Bekesuode Abulu is the way to go.The consensus agreement of Egbema-Ijaw Leaders on who should be the next Chairman of Warri North Local Government is the way to go. There is already a consensus agreement in place by the Egbema-Ijaw leaders and this agreement should be respected by all and sundry. We commend the courage of Governor Okowa and our Itsekiri brothers and sisters for accepting the wishes of the people. We do not want unnecessary tension in Warri North Local Government Area. We stand by the consensus agreement of the Egbema- Ijaw Leaders.
Mr Abulu who was appointed by Governor Okowa in his first term as Special Assistant on Youth and Community Development and currently Special Assistant on Political to the Governor, should be given the opportunity to serve as the Chairman of Warri North Local Government Area”.
“Smart and hardworking young man, Mr Francis Bekesuode Abulu is the choice of the leaders and also the forum. We do not want regret by people because of loyalty and sentimental consideration. We are appealing to our dynamic Governor, Ejele and other PDP leaders to do this for us as a befitting Christmas gift to the people of Warri North and the future of our people”, they added.