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2015: Towards Anioma Governorship Project
ALPHONSUS AGBORH writes on the singsong of the people of Delta North towards 2015 governorship slot and the opposition ahead.
The tone of the songs is the same;the lyrics are also not different, but the dancing steps are at variance with each other.
Yes, the people of Delta North, otherwise called Anioma, have come out in their groups to blow the trumpet in order to alert all that, come 2015, power rotation should shift to the senatorial zone.
This time, the song is that Delta North will produce the governor with the support of those in Delta Central (Urhobos) and South (Ijaws,Itsekiris and Isoko) senatorial districts.
Some of the groups in the forefront include Delta North Political Forum, the Unity Group, Delta North Leaders forum, and Anioma Welfare Initiative as well as Ndokwa United.
Their position is resting on the fact that for eight years, starting in 1999, an Urhobo man, Chief James Ibori ruled, while Emmanuel Uduaghan of South, precisely an Itsekiri, is on his second tenure to finish his eight years as governor of the state.
It looked like a gentleman agreement between the three senatorial zones to make power rotation in the state realistic.
But when recently, groups from both Delta Central and South zones began to deny that there was no agreement in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) government that an Anioma man will be governor come 2015, there came a stir in the political circles with the Aniomas asking questions as to the keeping of an agreement.
Delta Central, where the opposition was so pronounced with the emergence of Chief Great Ogboru on the political podium, also became outspoken that the governor could come from anywhere.
Mr. Alex Onwuadiama of Anioma Political Forum, sometimes ago, reaffirmed that no situation or manipulation would change the position for the emergence of a Delta Northerner as governor come 2015.
Taking a close look at the champions of the cause for Anioma governorship, it becomes clear that majority of them are in government, former office holders and others whose antecedents or pedigree is unquestionable.
However of recent, a group, made of technocrats, academics and politicians (the old breed), have come on the saddle to pilot a project that is intended to produce a governor without blemish who would be acceptable to all.
The Anioma Welfare Initiative, being coordinated by the former Bendel State Secretary of the National Party of Nigeria (NPN), Elder John Ehikwe, has on their list retired Justice S.A. Ehiwario, Professor P.C. Egbon, Professor Godwin Nduka, Dr. Ikechukwu Enwenwan, Dr. Felix Okpilike, Professor B. Ejechi, and Dr. Roland Eyime.
Others are a Head of Service in Bendel State, Sonny Omordia, now a Venerable, Eng. Frank Mordi and Chairman of Delta State Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Chief Uji Udume, among others.
They see themselves as credible, neutral, selfless and committed people, who have come not to work for any aspirant, but that the aspirant from the Delta North must pass the crucible.
It does not really matter on which platform the aspirant may come from, but they are sure to set a standard for the office seeker.
What, therefore, is the position of the group? Elder John Ehikwe, coordinator of the group, agrees that Delta North should not go to sleep and expect to receive the governorship ticket for 2015 on a silver platter.
“In politics, you must be desirous of something, demanding it and lobbying for it and then you can hope to get it.
“The situation can be likened to a scene where people erroneously blame developed countries for not transferring technologies to under-developed countries.
“All we are saying is that Anioma people feel that they rightly deserve to occupy the governorship position in Delta come 2015,” he stated.
But the bane militating against the scores of groups in the vanguard of proponents of Anioma governorship is the issue of unity among the actors.
The search for unity is on and no doubt, Delta northerners, like their central and south colleagues, must come together to agree and disagree where necessary to surmount all hurdles leading to the Government House in 2015.
No wonder, Elder Ehikwe put it this way that: “if we really genuinely want the governorship position in 2015, we must start to think as one, plan as one, and speak with one voice from today.
“The need for unity is more pronounced in the case of Anioma nation because we are far less economically and financially endowed than our sister Senatorial districts in the state.
“To achieve this unity of purpose will take some time because any divided or personalised approach will be recipe for failure.”
Calling a spade a spade, the group added that it is too premature for aspirants to the governorship position to start wasting their fund now on campaign.
Rather, it is working together to pull together the resources of Delta Northerners to realize their dream.
Ehikwe again reiterated: “the task of getting governorship slot for the Anioma nation in 2015 will involve every Anioma man, and woman contributing part of what God has generously endowed them with.
According to him, some have different attributes and when put together, the way will be easier.
In this direction, all the aspirants are asked not to go it alone as it would amount to buying the position for themselves.
The calculation here is that there will be no room for individuals to hijack the position with their wealth, but to listen to voice of reason where the initiative and other stakeholders would look critically and unbiased too, to pick one person to represent Anioma in the governorship race in 2015.
But how far can such a group that is trying to change the political destiny of Anioma go in an environment where the political class hardly obeys the people they call their leaders in Anioma?
Except this culture of respect is encouraged and the area begins to know their political leaders and listen to them, all the hullabaloo about an Anioma governor in 2015 may become a farce.