As Mixed Reactions Trail Ibori’s Second Term Endorsement For Okowa
For daring to come out to endorse governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta state for second term in office, the political class has taken ex-convicted former governor of the state, Mr. James Ibori to the cleaner calling him an ex-convict awaiting to be faced with a pending 170 count charges of money laundry and corruption at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Politicians have also in the heat of the endorsement of Okowa told Ibori to bury his head in shame rather than coming out to throw his weight behind the second term bid of governor Okowa who Deltans have rejected.
It would be recalled that Ibori who was last weekend, at Oghara, headquarters of Ethiope West local area of the state, hosted to a mass rally by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Delta Central District to formally welcome him home, after serving a 13 year jail term in a United Kingdom prison over money laundry and corruption charges used the rally to endorse Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, for a second term.
Ibori who disclosed that the endorsement has become necessary, called the people of Delta Central to support Governor Okowa for a second term in office in anticipation that the Delta North Senatorial District would throw its support behind an Urhobo candidate when the time in 2023.
Reacting to the endorsement, a member of the Delta State House of Assembly under the platform of PDP who pleaded for anonymity lambasted Ibori whom he described as a common criminal and ex-convict who is still basking in the euphoria of past glory of snatching and stuffing of ballot boxes during elections.
“Gone are those days rigging era, Ibori should know that endorsing someone like Okowa is a mere statement because Deltans have made up their mind and nothing will make them rally round Iowa for a second term.
“Okowa is heartless and a monumental failure who is good at looting the state treasury through cronies, political associates and family members.” the lawmaker said.
HardReporters reliably gathered that the speaker of the Delta State house of Assembly, Mr. Monday Igbuya had sometime ago approached a top politician in the state and confided in the politician that his glamouring for second term for Okowa was just a mere political statement to protect his speakership position and that when the chips are down everyone shall answer his or her father’s name.
Also speaking to our correspondent, a PDP youth leader from Delta North senatorial District, who simply gave his name as Afam said Ibori is entitled to his opinion, “But one thing is certain which is, Okowa cannot governor Delta State for a second term. Okowa is a disgrace to the party. If I were Ibori, I will remain calm and watch the political terrain because as an ex-convict and someone who is still having about 170 count charges for money laundry and corruption, any statement I make could be used against me.”
The youth leader however concluded that “Ibori endorsement of Okowa for a second term should not give anyone sleepless nights, gone are those when an ex-convict will have a say politically in the state. Ibori is just a paper Tiger test the political waters of the state. Even Okowa’s own people will contest against him come 2019.”
A local government chairman in Delta Central who pleaded anonymity said Ibori is a coward that will die many times before his real death. “Ibori should not take for granted the benevolence of the people rallying around him. He should not forget that he’s an ex-convict and there are still criminal cases on his neck. I will advise him to trend with caution, because he’s no longer in charge even in his Oghara town.”
Delta State 2015 All Progressives Congress, (APC), Governorship candidate, Olorogun O’tega Emerhor who reacted through his Media Aide, Mr. Aghogho Abraham Orotomah in a statement, said APC as a party is fully prepared to meet Ibori, Okowa and the PDP at the 2019 poll to determine which party now owns Delta State political landscape, adding that with the open endorsement of Okowa for a second term in office by the former governor, Ibori have proven wrong, the rumour going around that he has intention of joining the APC.