Governor Okowa, Fashola Commissions Gas Turbine In Niger Delta.

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola and the Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, have commissioned a 115mw gas turbine installed by Transcorp Power Limited Ughelli, bringing the installed capacity to 620mw from the 160mw which the company inherited from UPN privatization in 2013.

According to the management of Transcorp Power, the company currently generates only 300mw owing to shortage of gas supply, and promises to invest facilities that would increase gas supply to the power station if the government creates an enabling regulatory framework.

Mr. Fashola commended Governor Okowa for his commitment to peace in the Niger Delta, observing that it has paid off with the successful operation of Transcorp in the area without issues.

He also observed that the increase in power generation was a clear sign that the privatization of the power sector had started yielding benefits for Nigerians.

However, Governor Okowa called for collaborative efforts in the power sector to ensure that generated power translates into electricity in the homes of Nigerians, assuring that the existing peace in the state would be consolidated as a continuous boost to investors confidence.

 

Source: Channels TV

Ibori rallies support for Governor Okowa’s re-election in 2019

Former Delta state governor, Chief James Onanefe Ibori, has rallied support for the incumbent governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa ahead of the 2019 elections.

He spoke yesterday in Oghara, at a welcome ceremony organised in his honour by Delta Political Vanguard for Okowa, a socio-political group led by Michael Diden, member representing Warri North Constituency in the Delta State House of Assembly.

Ibori, in his belief that governors from all the zones of the state should serve two-terms of eight years, expressed confidence that he has the capacity to deliver the governor and assured that there would be no room for change in the Government House, Asaba.

His words: “I have a right to ask my people to support his administration until 2023 to be able to complete his agenda for Delta State. It is true that I am still resting and it is not time for me to start politics. I am very grateful for the way you welcome me. After I have rested, I will start to make comments and you people will hear what I will have to say.

“Okowa is laying a foundation for the development of Delta State and four years will not be enough and he will need another four years to continue to do this. I support his agenda and I will back up whatever I say. When he finishes, we shall continue from there.”

He urged all Delta people to be united and stay together, adding that they should maintain the peace in their respective domains, particularly in the coastal areas as Okowa need a peaceful atmosphere to perform.

“You gave him the mandate and so you should support him to actualize this mandate. We should continue to reposition our state as a strategic state in the country. Be loyal to your governor and be loyal to your state,” Ibori said.

In his remarks, Diden said the ceremony was to support and welcome Ibori, whom he described as their political leader, back to the state. He the group and political associates from across the state were behind Okowa’s re-election in 2019.When contacted by The Guardian, Ibori’s spokesman, Tony Eluemunor, said he had not been briefed on the new development.

 

Source: The Guardian

Corruption, threat to good governance in Nigeria – Okowa

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, yesterday, regretted that over the years, corruption has constituted a serious threat to good governance, rule of law, peace and security, including development programmes aimed at tackling poverty and economic backwardness in the country.

Okowa, at a one day anti-corruption summit held in Asaba, said that the anti-corruption war of the Federal Government would be more effective if it was free from all social, religious and political persuasions.

He said, “Corruption is one of the most recurring discourses in our national life, because, virtually every Nigerian agrees that it undermines the fabric of every aspect of society.

“The fight against corruption is not an easy task, but it can be won through advocacy such as this one that aims at drastic reduction and where possible, total elimination of the practices in every facet of our national life, which our anti-corruption agencies, namely, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, Code of Conduct Bureau and Code of Conduct Tribunal, are in the forefront of the fight against corruption.

“In the pursuit of our anti-corruption agenda, greater success will be recorded if our actions and practices are blind to all social, religious and political persuasions. Our actions must be civil and be such that engineers public confidence and participation if the battle is to be won.”

How anti-corruption crusade can succeed – Governor Okowa

Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, has advised that for the ongoing Federal Government crusade on graft to be more effective, it should be free from all social, religious and political persuasions,

At an anti corruption summit in Asaba yesterday, Okowa noted that corruption is one of the most recurring discourses in the nation because, virtually every Nigerian agrees that it undermines the fabric of every aspect of our society.

Okowa called for the restructuring of the value system and for Nigerians so as to cultivate and imbibe the culture of selflessness in rendering services, especially in public offices.

Presently, he said that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC), the Code of Conduct Bureau and the Code of Conduct

Tribunal, are in the forefront of the fight against corruption. According to him, greater success will be recorded in the crusade against corruption if the actions and practices of Nigerians are blind to all social, religious and political influences, insisting people’s actions must be civil and be such that engineers public confidence and participation if the battle is to be won.

He tasked Nigerians on the need to learn to service our needs and avoid the path of feeding our greed

 

Source: The Guardian

Delta APC calls for immediate probe of Governor Okowa over missing N48.6Bn

The All Progressive Congress, APC, Delta State is demanding that Governor Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa be probed by the Delta State House of Assembly on the issue of the missing N48.6billion that had accrued to Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (DESOPADEC) since May, 2015 to date. This fund represents 50 per cent of N97.2 billion that had accrued and have been paid by the Federal Government in respect of 13 per cent derivation funds that is specifically meant for developing oil-producing areas in Delta State.

Consequent upon the accusations by Delta APC that this fund is yet to be remitted to DESOPADEC, and the call on Governor Okowa to account for the whereabouts of the money, the Governor, speaking through his Chief Press Secretary, Charles Aniagu, expressly declared that “the money was deducted to service several financial debts and commitments of the state government. The governor said whatever had accrued to the state from the 13 per cent derivation had been depleted before it reached government coffers.” Furthermore, Okowa tried to scoff off the allegations by APC as follows: “They have forgotten that we have obligations. We have debts that are deducted before the money even gets to the state on accounts of existing debts, in terms of contractuals, in terms of the bonds as well as the rescheduled loans from the Federal Government.”

Based on his admission above, the Governor has diverted the said DESOPADEC funds to improper use. This is MISAPPROPRIATION. If true, Governor Okowa has acted in clear breach of his duties and responsibility to the citizens of Delta State, and particularly the oil-producing areas under the extant laws of Delta State that established DESOPADEC. These so-called debts are of an unknown origin, meaning or impact. It is also obvious that they are a state-wide responsibility and should not and cannot be repaid by the funds that have accrued solely to oil producing areas.

APC Delta is making this call for a probe of Governor Okowa on the basis of the following imperatives:

(1)    “Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission Law” (also referred to as ‘DESOPADEC LAW 2015’) as amended by Governor Okowa himself came into force on 6th August, 2015, and Part II Section 13 (i) a & b of this law categorically states as follows:

The Commission shall:

(i)    Receive and administer exclusively the fifty percent (50%) of the thirteen percent (13%) Oil Derivation Fund accruing to the state for:

(a)    the rehabilitation and development of Oil Producing Areas in the state;

(b)    other development projects as may be determined from time to time by the Commission.

Also, Part V, Section 20 (Expenditure of the Commission) clearly states that the funds of the Commission shall be applied in the interest of Oil Producing Areas only, and it makes no case whatsoever for the intrusion, diversion or misappropriation by the Governor of the derivation funds for payment of accrued debts of the state.

Therefore, the claim by Okowa that his government has diverted the funds to “service several financial debts and commitments of the state government” is not tenable under DESOPADEC Law, 2015. Governor Okowa has acted with impunity against the law. By consciously abandoning the vested interests of oil-producing areas and diverting the funds meant for addressing its development needs, which in turn helps to curb agitation and hostilities, the Okowa’s so-called “SMART” agenda can be deduced as Shrewd, Mean, Appalling, Reckless and Terrible. In fact, this action has deepened the poverty within the communities and further impoverished the long-suffering people of oil producing areas in Delta State.

If we concede that Okowa does not grasp the link between suppressing development in oil-producing areas and the upsurge of militancy and kidnappings, can we assume that he is so starved and blinded by greed for dispensable money that he must lay his hands on DESOPADEC funds against the existing laws of the state which he passed himself? Worse still, could this not be part of a “hidden ploy” to incite militancy and kidnappings, thereby frustrating the effort of the federal government at securing the much-needed peace within the region? It is therefore not unreasonable to infer that Governor Okowa ought to be held largely liable for the continuing unrest, violence and hostilities that have persisted in the oil-producing areas of Delta State.

In summary, Governor Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa has failed on grounds of fiscal responsibility and in his constitutional duty to sustain peace and security in Delta state. He has also failed morally in upholding the principal tenets of equity and distributive justice.

We therefore call on Delta State House of Assembly to commence an urgent probe of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa in order to account for the missing DESOPADEC N48.6 BILLIONS, and to review this action as being one of the triggers of the recurring crisis in the oil producing areas.

APC Delta expects members of the House of Assembly that are representing the oil-producing areas to champion this demand, speak out for, stand with and protect the interests of their people. Should the State House of Assembly decline their responsibility to institute a probe, we would conclude that they are hands in gloves with Governor Okowa in the suppression of the people of Delta State.

Lastly, we urge deprived Deltans to unite, irrespective of political persuasions, against Governor Okowa’s selfish, careless and wasteful agenda. Deltans must rise as one determined family to challenge the inept and visionless misrule of Governor Okowa and his PDP government now, and in preparation for throwing them out in 2019.

 

Prophet Jones Ode Erue
State Chairman
All Progressives Congress, Delta State.

Governor Okowa Can Kiss Second Term Goodbye – By Fejiro Oliver

“Political aspirants make too much of the people before election, and, if successful, too much of themselves after it. They use the people when they want to rise, as we treat a spirited horse when we want to mount him;–for a time we pat the animal upon the neck, and speak him softly; but once in the saddle, then come the whip and spur”.Christian Nestell Bovee

This may just be a memo or just another sincere piece of my mind to Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa who is fast building a name for himself as “Delta State is broke”, yet those around him live large like kings and queens.

Yesterday made it exactly one year that I had a private meeting with him in Delta State lodge, Lagos. Unfortunately all the things we discussed one year ago have not been fulfilled. It all turned out to be the usual promise and fail from a Nigerian politician, with penchant for lying.

I’m very certain that the result of the Ondo State election where the incumbent governor, Olusegun Mimiko of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) lost to the main opposition, the All Progressive Congress (APC) shocked Okowa to the bone marrows. As I type, I’m certain that he would be in the governor’s lodge trying to analyze where they went wrong, inspite of all the plans they made in Abuja. Mimiko is not your everyday governor who should lose an election, but the people have become wiser that you can’t use them and dump them. On the day of reckoning, they will pay back in your own coins, and they did just that to Mimiko by voting Rotimi Akeredolu.

In Delta State, the people have not fared better under Okowa, despite the huge support they gave him during the last elections, where they fought an incumbent governor just to see him succeed. Everyone who truly supported him are today regretting why they did so, as he has turned the government into a mini cabal, where only few call the shots and gives out crumbs to poor supporters.

Even those he appointed as Commissioners, Special Advisers and Special Assistants are wailing and wishing the government comes to an end, so they can support someone who has the interest of the state and their own welfare. Today, Tony Okowa has practically turned Elomax Hotel into his bedroom, where he wastes millions lodging, while his house in Okpanam Road is left to rot away. His brother is the governor and he’s the Sports Commission boss with so much money to throw around, yet no single success has he recorded in sports since he came onboard, unlike Pinnick Amaju who turned the commission to a budding sports centre.

Who is deceiving Okowa that he’s making life prosperous for Deltans when he has impoverished them and made life worse for them. it is obvious that a cabal has hijacked the government that he and his Principal Secretary are not aware of. It is crystal clear that he may not be fully in control of the government but relies on what his childhood friend who is now a big contractor and consultant in the state tells him. Like someone once asked. “Is Lawrence Oshiegbu the governor”?

Who will believe the slogan of “Delta State is broke”, when we now have civilian billionaires in his government? Okowa should tell Deltans who the Okpuzor families from Ika are? They are unarguably the richest Deltans at the moment. My days of private investigations on them reveal dangerous details that will shock the state if reported?

The governor cannot keep pretending like all is well when everything we all struggled together to achieve is falling apart right before our eyes, and the opposition fast gaining ground. Of what use is giving Uche Okpunor another N2 billion this month for Airport project that does not benefits the common man? Where are all the numerous investors that he held meetings with amidst fanfare and signed MOUs with when he came on board in 2015? Why has the budget for DESOPADEC not been released for the commission to begin work with? Why are people from Delta Central and South crying and those from Ika dancing Skelewu because of the numerous contracts they now get? Is this a government of nepotism and tribalism?

Ondo State victory for the APC should serve as a lesson to Okowa that you cannot continue to take the people for a ride and appeal to them few months to your elections to vote for you. The slogan of “PDP all the way” worked last elections because we saw in him a fresh idea and had to vote people that could work with him. Thankfully enough, we have seen his kind of person and can now judge better.

With the current disenchantment against him and his Ika government, he may just be gunning for one term in office. The emperor in Abuja has already given a mandate to his top strikers from South South to capture Rivers or Delta and the easiest of them is Delta. Rivers State is too violent a state to toy with. Nyesom Wike as a governor is doing extremely well and has cleared all pension arrears in the State, while Okowa is not only owing workers but also pensioners like his failed Ondo State counterpart.

Karma is a dangerous bitch that can never forget the wrongs done. The days of reckoning will soon be close and Okowa will realize that he cannot get the votes of Delta Central through his SSG, Festus Agas or his Commissioner for Environment, John Nani alone but will need the combination of those he has abandoned.

Like one of his top aides said recently “Na only who you follow chop, you dey follow drown”. As it stands, Okowa is cruising alone with sycophants hailing him on. His Commissioner for Economic Planning, Kingsley Emu believes that all is well and that the governor has blocked the loopholes through which funds are siphoned. Whenever he tells me that, I just nod, knowing that he’s not a politician but a technocrat that does not know what goes on in the system and doesn’t feels the anger on the street.

Those who truly supported him in 2014 are already taking a walk out of his government to join hands with the progressives and he doesn’t seem to know. The belief that Nigerians are angry with President Muhammadu Buhari should not mean that if Deltans are given a credible candidate from APC who has not tasted the seed of corruption, they won’t vote for such a person.

As a governor, he’s extremely nice and dedicated to work. He has the heart of gold to deliver prosperity to Deltans. He has the desire to truly make Delta the hub of industrialization and a commercial city of repute, but unfortunately swallowed by unseen hands that manipulate him.

These little things matter.

Governor Okowa and the failure of leadership – By Emmanuel Asiwe

Over a year after his election on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the manner in which Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, has conducted the affairs of the state, in terms of governance and delivering the dividends of democracy, gives enough cause to worry about both his preparedness and capacity to deliver on his central electoral promise of inclusiveness to, assumedly, better governance. Rather, contrary to general expectations, Delta state has been hijacked by a cabal of political contractors and sundry jobbers, who have captured and taken the state hostage, even as the governor appears clueless and confused on the way forward in addressing the life and death challenges facing the people of Delta state. Honestly speaking, Okowa is carrying about as if he sought to win power first and then plan what to do with it after; he is just so unprepared for office, that not a few Deltans are having voter’s remorse. It is axiomatic that Okowa has set himself to fail. This is an embarrassing letdown by a man to whom much has been given; and from whom much is expected.

Since the creation of Delta state in 1991, the people have suffered under successive corruption-ridden, intrigue-filled, undisciplined and rapacious governments; the poster child of which was James Ibori, who was convicted of corruption and money-laundering and currently serving jail time in Britain. The people had waited to see a change for the better and Okowa’s election held out that promise and hope that a new Delta State was possible. So far, that hope and expectation has turned out to be a luxurious desire as Okowa has put on display, the most embarrassing verdict on his poor leadership credentials, proving to be worse than even his predecessors. Okowa seems addicted to primordial sentiments and prebendal instincts. Granted that before him, the Anioma people of Delta North and the Ijaw have never occupied the exalted office, that in itself; should not justify the abusive patronage and clientelism which Okowa has elevated to instruments of statecraft and governance.

Okowa has return to the old order when Delta state was a jungle in which political warlords and rent-seekers held sway to the detriment of the people. Looking like a man in a hurry, Okowa picked up the baton with gusto and went to work with aplomb, determination and zeal to rehabilitate his disgraced political mentor, James Ibori. To begin with, he stuffed his cabinet with relics of the old guard; people bereft of integrity in all its ramifications. Okowa’s choice for Commissioner of Finance had served in that same capacity in the Ibori administration. His Commissioner for Education was charged alongside Ibori by the anti-graft agency the EFCC. After sacking 3000 workers, Okowa seem not satisfied with the dubious title of “Governor Delta is broke.” He has taken corruption to obscene levels. His modesty in public appearance is put to shame by the splendor of ostentatious living, advertised so gleefully, by his entourage and cronies, who are boasting to anyone who cares to listen that “this is our time to chop.”

It is incredulous, that Okowa, who has elevated the phrase “Delta state is broke” to a personal motto found nothing wrong awarding an airport renovation contract worth N5 billion to ULO Construction Company owned by one of his side-kicks, Uche Okpunor. With practically no experience in the aviation sector, Okpunor sold the contract to a Chinese firm for N500 million and pocketed the difference as commission. The Chinese outfit has abandoned the project and Okpunor defended his action by claiming he received only half of the N5 billion. The balance N2.5 billion reportedly went to underwrite the cost of securing Okowa’s victory at the election appeals tribunal. It is worth noting that the same ULO company received hundreds of millions of naira to renovate the presidential lodge but did a shoddy job, resulting in a fire; only to be rewarded with another contract to renovate the damaged building.

In another paid-to-play scam, Okowa approved a three-year N360 million contract for Daily Independent Newspaper for coverage of activities of the Delta state government. The funds were disbursed by the Managing Director of the Delta State Oil Area Producing Communities (DESOPADEC), William Makinde, an Ibori proxy, who has taken financial recklessness to a level, never before seen in Delta state. If Makinde has seen anything wrong with combining public office with incurable money-mindedness and lust for material aggrandizement, his actions are yet to reflect it. Here is a man who could not pay workers their salaries for the month of December 2015, but spent N50 million in a lavish end-of-year party at the Brown Hill event center. Makinde claims to have paid N5 million to rent the venue, whereas the standard rent was N1 million. Makinde runs DESOPADEC as his private kitchen.

Under Okowa, the developmental aspirations of Delta state have taken a back seat, and everything he does is to empower and fill the pockets of his Ika kinsmen to the exclusion of people from the central and south areas. He has missed no opportunity to reward his political sinecures. A case in point is the decision to re-constitute the moribund board of Direct Labor Agency (DLA) with former Speaker of the legislature, Frank Enekorogha nominated Director-General. Besides the fact that Okowa provided no evidence how the DLA would benefit a state in dire financial straits, that the governor would be opening more drain pipes on the public treasury, at a time workers and contractors are owed arrears, tells badly on his understanding of political leadership as a trust from the electorate to put the people’s interest above any other.

With all the squandermania, Okowa cannot definitely move Delta to a higher level on the scale of development. It is trite to state that development strategy is anchored on some essentials. Following health and housing, transportation infrastructure is arguably the next human imperative and critical factor essential to development. So far from the look of things, the Okowa administration has done next to nothing to improve service delivery and the welfare of the people. Rather, it has been a special purpose vehicle for an admixture of people who, like soldiers-of-fortune, have migrated to where the fortune is, persons driven by greed and self-interest who will stop at nothing in their quest for personal financial gain. This is not what Deltans voted for and it is no exaggeration to suggest that unless he changes direction, Okowa will not win a second term, even if he is foolhardy enough to seek re-election.

Given that Delta State has peculiar developmental challenges, the legitimate expectations for someone coming into the job with impressive grassroots and public service credentials, was that the new governor would bring some sobriety and decency into the governance of the state and possibly surpass the performance of his predecessor. Alas, Okowa has failed. The question now is how long will Deltans tolerate his vampire government? With Okowa having lost his way so early in the day, and if as the saying goes, morning shows the day, then are these signs of worse days ahead? No one except Okowa can answer these questions. To continue to hide behind “Delta state is broke” while lining the pockets of your cronies is hypocrisy that stinks to the high Heavens.

It is indeed pathetic that a man who was given the chieftaincy title of Ekwueme of Ika (meaning a man who does what he says) would turn out to be such a terrible disappointment, yet arrogant and disdainful to the electorate. Because leadership is key to change the present sad state of things in Delta state, the governor must commit himself to, and be seen to so do, a life of rectitude and an integrity-driven government. The only effective leadership is by example and Okowa as the pinnacle of state authority and power, must earn and claim without an iota of doubt, the moral high ground from which to exercise leadership. This, certainly, can be done. The only thing required is for Okowa to walk his talk and lead by example. Surrounding yourself with parvenus, court-jesters, opportunists, political touts and rogues who see their appointments as an invitation to “come and eat” instead of an opportunity to serve is not governance, not to talk of good governance.

Delta Government disowns 700 illegally-employed staff of tertiary schools

The Delta Government has disowned over 700 academic and non-academic staff of some tertiary institutions whose names were not in the state’s payroll.

 

The government said the staff were illegally employed.

 

The state’s Commissioner for Higher Education, Jude Sinebe, announced this at a news conference in Asaba on Wednesday.

 

The commissioner said there was no provision for such employment before the staff were engaged.

 

“In tertiary institutions, we don’t just employ workers for the sake of employment. We only employ when there is a need for such workers.

 

“This issue can be likened to a case of illegal employment and I can tell you that it is not only in the Delta Polytechnic, Ogwashi-Uku; we have similar cases at the State Colleges of Education in Agbor and Warri.

 

“The affected staff were employed out of the institutions’ statutory provisions. The system that we operate does not recognise them as our staff, as such we cannot pay them”, Mr. Sinebe said.

 

The commissioner explained that many of the schools went out of their ways to employ the affected staff without recourse to approval from the state government.

 

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that many of those employed between 2013 and 2015, were lecturers, technicians, information officers, clerical officers and messengers.

Okowa sacks aide for defrauding Dogara of N250,000

Delta state Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has sacked his Senior Special Assistant on Protocol, Mr. Temple Mudi, for allegedly defrauding the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, of N250,000.

 

The Speaker, it was gathered in Government House, Asaba, yesterday was allegedly defrauded by Okowa’s sacked aide when he visited the Big Heart state for a public function.

 

Temple was said to have privately approached the Speaker and told him that ‘one of his convoy vehicles hit his Hilux van when he previously visited the state and that he spent N250, 000 to fix it back.’

 

A top government functionary at the Government House, Asaba yesterday said the Speaker was immediately moved with pity after Temple’s tale, even as he expressed concern and agreeably refunded the money.

“At a second thought, the Speaker decided to discuss the matter with a member, representing Ika Federal Constituency, Hon. Victor Nwokolo, who in-turn tabled the matter before Governor Okowa, before the case assumed a new dimension”, the government official disclosed.

 

Apparently miffed, the governor, however, summoned the Director of Protocol (Government House), Mr. Victor Eboigbe, with a view to unearthing what actually transpired between the Speaker and the former aide.

 

“His Excellency, the Governor,was pissed off by the fraudulent character of Mr. Temple, who swindled a distinguished visitor to the state of N250, 000.

 

His Excellency has directed his D.O.P (Director of Protocol) to relieve him of his appointment,” the source further disclosed.

Okowa gives contractors 7-day ultimatum to go back to site.

Delta Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has charged the contractors handling road projects in the state to go back to the site.

 

Governor Okowa gave the charge during an inspection on ongoing road projects in the state yesterday in Asaba.

 

The governor who was represented by the state commissioner for work, Chief James Augoye, gave a week ultimatum to contractors handling its various projects to mobilise to site and commence work to avert sanctions.

 

He said that the state government was not happy with the pace and standard of some projects under execution especially after mobilisation by the erring contractors financially without seeing the impact of the projects.

 

He noted that the State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, was not happy with the pace of some projects after mobilizing the contractors will no longer be tolerated by the government, with a warning that any contractor who fails to commence operation at its projects site on Monday, next week would be sanctioned.

 

Chief Augoye cashed at the contractor handing the Onyeloni 263m street, Iyiatu 771m street and four other road projects in Kwale for poor performance and threatened to sanction if it fails to mobilize and commence operation on Monday next week latest.

The Needless Fraud That Brought Okowa To Power – Lauretta Onochie.

First things first. I believe Gov. Patrick Ifeanyi  Okowa won the election in Delta state as he was the only candidate that ran in the 2015 gubernatorial election in the state. He worked hard on his campaign while the others squabbled and battled, not for the people’s votes, but for the heart and soul of the Urhobo Progressive Union, made up of a few men who represented their personal interests.

But in the desperation of the PDP to win the South-South during their 2015 presidential re-election bid, they massively falsified the Presidential election results, for their hero, Goodluck Jonathan! The whole world expected it but those in PDP, were shocked to find that Gen. Muhammadu Buhari was coasting to a landslide victory over the one who supervised the brazen looting of our commonwealth, more than any other past leaders have ever done.

Presidential election results in Delta state, were then PADDED! We knew what was going on as the nation waited endlessly for Delta state results to come in.

Now the real result of the Presidential election frightened the hell out of the defunct Wadata Plaza (PDP HQ) and Dr. Okowa’s handlers. They did not also realize that he was the ONLY candidate in Delta state. Those who preach Jesus by day on television and indulge in abominable rituals by night went to work. But God pass dem!

Having padded the presidential votes in Delta state, they must also, pad the gubernatorial election results to justify the huge numbers they gave to Jonathan, otherwise it would have clearly shown that the presidential election result, was not representative of the true number of those who voted in Delta state.

So, unscrupulous INEC officials connived with Okowa’s team and they inflated the votes, again, across the state. The result as we showed then, was that, even in Okowa’s ward and across the state, the number of votes was far more than the number of accredited voters. That’s why money needed to change hands with judges and the judges cashed in on this fraud that began with the Presidential Election by the PDP.

We raised the alarm at the time and we were called sore losers! But we knew it was just a matter of time before it all comes tumbling down.

In a normal democratic society, the court would have annulled the Delta state gubernatorial election. Dr. Okowa would have been disqualified from the rerun. He would be tried for electoral malpractices and jailed if found guilty. However, the judges got creative and got paid for the dumb and unnecessary fraud the PDP committed in Delta State.

So we now have a governor who clearly won the election but succumbed to bad counseling from Wadata Plaza, Abuja during the 2015 presidential election. If you ask me, Dr. Okowa is a victim for succumbing to Jonathan’s obsession to win the South-South regional votes, a region he supervised its underdevelopment. But then, Dr. Okowa is a pushover and very loyal to many people in conflicting camps.

Dr. Okowa is a James Ibori loyalist to the core. He is also in partnership with prominent Niger Delta warlord, Government Ekpemupolo ’Tompolo’ who, allegedly, heavily funded his campaign. Even Mrs. Onyemaechi Mrakpor who allegedly lost the PDP nomination ticket  for the race for the Aniocha /Oshimili Federal constituency to Paul Adingupu but is now representing us in Abuja, firmly has Okowa in her pocket. She decided who got appointed into Okowa’s cabinet, making her “husband” the Attorney General of the state as well as appointing her brothers, sisters and nieces. So we can see that Dr. Okowa has many Masters/Mistresses.

But when an electoral fraud has been committed, it does not matter that he won the election, fair and square. What the question should be is, “Was any law broken in the electoral process that brought him to power?” If the answer is “Yes”, then everyone involved must answer to the law. Under President Buhari, sins that are swept under the carpet are being unearthed as investigators follow the stench of the smell of sins.

Dr. Okowa’s situation is also made worse by his perceived non-performance in Delta State. Deltans from the Central and South Senatorial districts allege that he has abandoned them and is only working in his area of origin, Anioma. But Anioma people allege that he is only using state funds to complete constituency projects he was paid for when he was their Senator at the National Assembly. Either way, Deltans are the losers as the funds used to oil the palms of judges and INEC officials, come as top priorities and has to be recovered first.

It’s true that at the beginning of his tenure, Dr. Okowa voiced the fact that he inherited a dilapidated economy, raped and bastardized by his predecessor, Emmanuel Uduaghan, the same scenario that confronted Pres. Buhari at the national level. But while Pres. Buhari is holding to account, those who stole public funds under his predecessor, Okowa has feathered the nest for Uduaghan and his co-looters. He has done nothing and can now, not even pay salaries. He has actually gone ahead to call on the Pres. Buhari led Federal government, to stop the war on corruption!

Our society has been messed up by the electoral fraud of our past political leaders under the reign of PDP. We, therefore, do not understand why ex-President Jonathan is running around the continent, projecting himself as a super election monitor. His reign in Nigeria was fraught with colossal election malpractices.

This is one reason we must have a National Assembly that is people-oriented. Our people cannot have those who came to power through paths tainted and paved with criminality, reign over them. Some of our laws need to change. But the National Assembly is busy with “Summoning”, “investigating” and “Probing”, instead of looking into ways to clean up our extant laws and make new ones that can protect the interests of the citizenry.

Our prayer is that Dr. Okowa will have good health. He needs it. It’s tough days and years ahead of him. INEC officials who connived to commit the frauds are already facing the consequences of their actions. So will everyone one else who was involved in duping the people of Nigeria. Judges and Governors too.

– Lauretta Onochie.

SR: Delta State Governor, Okowa, Slumps Over From Mysterious Sickness

Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, reportedly slumped over last Wednesday at the government house in Asaba.

According to an impeccable government house source, who pleaded for anonymity, Mr. Okowa who was billed to attend the World Teachers Day celebration at the cenotaph last Wednesday. However, after all preparations were put in place, Mr. Okowa reportedly slumped over at his office preventing his attendance.

Our source disclosed that immediately the governor was whisked away from the office to an undisclosed place for medical attention and his deputy, Kingsley Otuaro, was called to represent him at the event.

“I can tell you categorically that since that Wednesday till today the governor has not attended any public function. If you watch well, all the public functions, it’s the deputy that is representing him. Though, we can’t tell why he slumped and the illness he is suffering from.

“Before becoming the state governor, he has been battling with unknown health challenges. Even when he was in the senate, he was with this unknown illness but some people close to him said what he is suffering from could not be far from some blood related illness,” our source stated.

All efforts to contact the State Commissioner for Information, Patrick Ukah, proved abortive as his mobile line was switched off. However, the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to governor, Charles Aniagwu swiftly debunked the story claiming it was not true.

How Delta discovered illegal N400m from scholarship board

The Executive Secretary, Delta State Scholarship and Bursary Board, Comrade Elijah Eloge, has disclosed how his team on assumption of office uncovered N400 million bursary illegally paid to students from other states who entered the list of authentic and qualified Deltans, through fictitious documents.

Eloge disclosed this when he received members of Indigenous Newspapers and Magazines Channel (INMC), Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Delta State Council, who were led on a courtesy visit by Comrade Spence Friday Idighri.

“On assumption of office we carried out a holistic verification of eligible Deltans in collaboration with National Identity Management Commission (NINC). We discovered that out of 40,000 students on bursary list only 20,000 were genuine and qualified Deltans,” he stressed.

He commended the press for remaining resolute on the side of the masses especially during the struggle for democracy in the military era.

Idighri said Eloge has distinguished himself right from his days as the Vice Chairman, Patani LGA, the State Universal and Basic Education Board (SUBEB) and now at the Scholarship and Bursary Board.

He solicited assistance of the board in the furnishing of the INMC’s secretariat.

Delta Community Alleges Marginalisation In Okowa’s Administration

Delta community cries out over exclusion in government Ukwuani Development Forum, UDF, has asked Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State and Delta State Independent Electoral Commission, DSIEC, to conduct a by-election in Ezhionum to elect a new Councillor to replace Mr. Emmanuel Atuma, who died in a motor accident while returning from work.

 

In a release after an extraordinary general meeting in Ezhionum, Ukwuani Local Government Area of Delta State, the group, in conjunction with HRM R.C. Osanwuta, the Ezhie of Ezhionum Kingdom and Ezhionum Development Association, EDA, wondered why the government of the day, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, would exclude the community in the scheme of things after giving the party massive support in the April 2015 general elections.

They expressed displeasure over alleged high level of marginalisation of the kingdom by the relevant authorities, saying since the demise of Atuma, the people of Ezhionum Kingdom have been excluded in the scheme of things as they no longer have a voice or representation in the legislative arm for over one year.

Gov. Okowa Okays Establishment Of Modular Refineries In Delta

Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta on Friday approved the establishment of modular refineries in the state to create jobs for its teaming unemployed youths.

 

 

The governor announced the approval when Mr Isaac Wright, the Managing Director of Wright Global Group, and his team paid him a visit in Asaba.

 

 

Okowa said that establishing the refineries in the oil-rich riverine communities would place them close to source of their raw materials.

 

He said that apart from providing job opportunities for the people, the project would also make petroleum products available and affordable.

 

“Modular refineries will provide jobs for our people. It will bring job opportunities close to the people and also bring the product close to the people and to the market at a reasonable rate.

 

“We will support this partnership, especially with the fact that it will provide job for our people and you are providing the funding 100 per cent.

 

“It is our hope that everything works; the government of Nigeria is also supporting the establishment of modular refineries because that is the right way to go,” Okowa said.

 

He assured the investors of adequate security, adding that the state was largely peaceful.

 

The governor said that the state government was working hard to ensure that the youths were employed and to create an enabling environment for investors.

 

“We are investor-friendly people and we will give you the best of support we can give to you as a state government,” he said.

 

Earlier, Wright said that his organization would provide 100 per cent funding for the modular refineries.

 

He said that the organisation proposed to establish the refineries in Escravos and Koko communities in the state.

 

Wright said that the refineries would be established at no cost to the government.

 

He said that the project, estimated to cost 400 million dollars (about N 78.8 billion), would be completed in a couple of years.

 

 

(NAN)

Okowa Condemns Murder Of Traditional Ruler, Promises Justice

Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta has condemned the gruesome murder of Obi Ofulue III, the Obi of Ubulu-Uku in Aniocha North Local Government Area of the state and promised to unmask the assailants.

 

Okowa spoke on Monday, during a condolence visit to the Obi’s Palace at Ubulu-Uku. The governor assured members of the Obi-in-Council and the people of Ubulu-Uku that security operatives would unmask those involved in the heinous crime that led to the death of the traditional ruler.

 

 

Okowa described the incident as unfortunate and terrible, adding that a promising traditional ruler in the state had to be killed in his prime.

 

 

“This is terrible, this is something nobody prays for, unfortunately, it has happened, he was one of the promising traditional rulers we had in the state; a peace-builder, and at all times you see the royalty in him. “It is my prayer and the prayers of all Deltans that the almighty God will give the people the fortitude to bear this loss. ‘’God alone gives peace and may He give you (the people of Ubulu-Uku Kingdom) the peace of mind required to take the next step in going forward.

 

 

“The police have made some arrests, the State Security Service and other security agencies are working to unravel what happened. “Our country is being bedeviled by one manner of kidnapping and abduction or the other. ‘’We never knew that it would deteriorate to a level where a royal father would be abducted and murdered,” the governor lamented. Okowa called for calm saying, “as we mourn, we must ensure that there is peace in the community”.

 

 

 

Mr Joseph Obaze, Secretary to the Obi-in-Council, who responded on behalf of the council, commended the efforts made by the governor and security agencies during the trying period.. He said: “This has never happened in the history of Ubulu-Uku Kingdom and we would like the culprits to be brought to book.”

 

 

(NAN)

Okowa Condemns Attack On Oil Facilities, Reads Riot Act To Perpetrators

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, has condemned in strongest terms, the recent attacks on the oil and gas facilities across the state and called on all Deltans to cooperate with the security agencies to unmask the criminals behind the heinous crime.

 
In a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Charles Ehiedu Aniagwu, the governor urged the security agencies to intensify their surveillance over the oil facilities and pledged the commitment of his administration to support all measures that would restore the confidence of all stakeholders in the oil and gas industry operating in Delta state.

 

 

“These attacks should be condemned by all well meaning Nigerians, particularly compatriots from Niger Delta. This is an attack on our soul. The state is bleeding again and its implication for the economy and image of Delta state grave”, he said.

 

 

The governor noted that only last week, his administration hosted a stakeholders’ summit on the effects of the vandalism of oil and gas facilities in the state; where the various arms of the security agencies, the oil and gas operators and the host communities converged to brainstorm on measures to stem the activities of vandals. He noted these attacks, coming just few days after the summit, was not a good way of reciprocating the good intentions of his government and the enormous resources that are being invested in turning around the fortunes of the state.

 

 

He called on community leaders and youth groups to resist any temptation to be drawn into these nefarious activities as this might jeopardize the on-going intervention of federal government, in the lives of the youths, through the Amnesty Office.

 

 

“Do not be part of this crime and refuse to listen to any leader or politician who would want to pitch one ethnic nationality against the other as a result of these incidents. The destruction of oil facilities is purely criminal and we reject attempts to label it otherwise,” the Governor observed.

 

 

Credit : Vanguard

INEC Confirms Delta State Governor Scored More Votes Than Number Of Voters

The Delta State governorship election petition tribunal, sitting in Asaba, has admitted four key documents, including card readers’ accreditation report, tendered by officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission.

The accreditation report submitted by INEC showed that the number of accredited voters for the April 11 governorship election in Delta state was lower than the results announced by electoral officials after the polls.

Two INEC officials – Assistant Director, ICT Department from Abuja headquarters and Chief Planning Officer, Delta State office – were directed to give testimony on the conduct of the April 11 election, following the request by the All Progressives Congress and its candidate, Emerhor Otega.

The Delta election, won by Ifeanyi Okowa of the Peoples Democratic Party, is being challenged by the APC and Mr. Otega.

Apart from the accreditation report, other documents tendered by the INEC officials at the commencement of hearing Wednesday, included, manual for election officials 2015; INEC’s April 2, 2015 press statement making accreditation through use of card readers only mandatory for the governorship elections; and guidelines and regulations for the conduct of 2015 general elections.

In their testimony, the INEC officials said that “all documents tendered were duly certified by INEC, that the card reader has three (3) functions to with; identification of voters, verification of PVC holder and voter’s authentication on Election Day.”

Further, the tribunal was told that “the card readers recorded no sustained failure during the governorship election in delta state and accredited numbers of voters as at April 29th was 709,000 and at the expiration of the shutting down of data upload, the final tally was 715,393.”

But on April 13, Delta State INEC had put the figure of accredited voters at 1,017,796, exceeding actual accreditation number revealed by the admitted report obtained from INEC central server.

In Nigeria’s technology driven 2015 elections, INEC central server generated data real time from card readers across polling units. This was to detect malpractices, especially inflation of numbers.

Announcing Mr. Okowa as the winner of the election on April 13, the Returning Officer, Bio Nyananyo, said the PDP candidate polled 724,680 votes, which translated to 14,980 votes higher than actual number of accredited voters.

Admissibility of the documents and ordering of INEC staff to give testimony on the conduct of the election had been strongly objected by Mr. Okowa, but was dismissed by the tribunal.

Premium Times

New Delta State Governor, Okowa Denied Access To Office On First Day At Work

Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, got a shock Monday on his first day in office as he was denied access to the governor’s office at Government House, Asaba, the state capital.

This might have deepened the purported frosty relationship between the immediate past governor, Emmanuel Uduaghan, and Okowa.

According o unofficial reports, the governor, who was conducted round offices and halls within the complex by the Permanent Secretary, Government House, Benson Oburoh, go an unpleasant surprise when the keys to his office were not made available, with insinuations that the ex-governor might still be holding on to the keys.

While a school of thought exonerated Uduaghan, saying the incident was the fault of some aides to
the new governor, who are believed to be supervising some repairs in the office, some people claimed that it was deliberate.

Okowa’s inspection of the Government House complex followed a prayer session at the Government House Chapel, which had in attendance his wife, Edith, deputy governor, Kingsley Otuaro, politicians and staff of the complex.

Speaking earlier at the service conducted by the chaplain, Rev. Ben Golley, Okowa urged the people of Delta State to continually pray for the success of the programmes and policies of their leaders, as prayer is the key to success.

Meanwhile, as residents of the state await the governor’s appointments to form a government, the erstwhile commissioners under ex-governor Uduaghan have allegedly stripped the Commissioners’ Quarters bare.

Civil servants attached to the official residential quarters of commissioners were seen in clusters discussing the development in hushed tunes.

One of the workers who pleaded not to be mentioned in print told Daily Independent that the former commissioners looted everything, including air conditioners, television sets, furniture and kitchen utensils from their official residences.

Delta 2015: Governorship Candidates Square Up For Live TV Debate..

The much anticipated live TV debate among top contenders in the Delta State gubernatorial election will now hold on March 24 in Asaba as against the earlier announced February 19.

Doely Intermediaries and Inspire Delta, organisers of the 2015 Delta State Gubernatorial Election Debate, in a statement last week announced that the postponement became necessary to accommodate everybody. Project Coordinator, Jude Banye said the decision to postpone the event was taken in light of the recent postponement of the General and State Elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Banye explained that due to the importance of the gubernatorial election debate and the anticipation of the state and its indigenes towards this event, there was a need to ensure that it was an all-encompassing debate with full attendance of all the gubernatorial candidates.

He stated that after consultations with all candidates and parties involved, the organisation had been constrained to postpone the event to March 24, 2015 to ensure the attendance of all candidates.
The event is still billed to hold at Grand Hotel, Asaba, Delta State, at 7.00pm and will be broadcast live on Channels TV. Doely Intermediaries is an independent, nonpartisan management consultancy headed by seasoned business analysts and workshop facilitators. Doely Intermediaries organised the 2011 Election Symposium tagged: One Man One Vote How Possible?

The debate which will be broadcast live on Channels Television and covered by major media houses, will be an ideal opportunity for the three main contenders, Chief Great Ogboru of the Labour Party (LP), Olorogun Otega Emerhor of APC and Senator Ifeanyi Okowa of the PDP to share their vision with Deltans at home and in the Diaspora.

“The move is a response to the need for candidates to articulate their plans and abilities to Delta indigenes and get the people more involved in the electoral process.

The Gubernatorial Election Debate is intended to inform, sensitise and involve voters in the 2015 Delta State political process,” Banye concluded.

PDP Group Canvasses Support For Jonathan, Okowa

Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, stalwarts, in Warri, Delta State, yesterday inaugurated a new political forum known as PDP Crusaders which seeks to inject new energy into the campaign project of Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, the party’s governorship candidate for next year’s election.

Speaking during the inauguration, President of the group, Prince Suru Diden, said the new forum was out to actualize the governorship ambition of Sen. Okowa and re-election of President Goodluck Jonathan come 2015.

Diden said: “Today’s historic meeting of stakeholders and members of PDP Crusaders provided a platform to canvass support for Sen. Okowa who is the bridge that will connect the three senatorial districts in Delta State. Our key strategy is door-to-door campaign to convince the electorate to vote for President Goodluck Jonathan and Sen. Okowa.

“Sen. Okowa would push forward Governor Uduaghan’s laudable projects in the state.”

While inaugurating the new Exco, the representative of the Grand Patron of the forum, Mr. Vincent Uduaghan said the meeting was a significant step towards winning the general election in 2015.

He also commended Governor Uduaghan for the peaceful conduct of the primaries, which in turn, produced Sen. Okowa.

Those in attendance at the meeting included Mr. Vincent Uduaghan, a representing the Grand Patron, immediate past Chairman of Warri South local government, Mr. Austin Uroye, Mr. Eugene Ebisin, Chief New-year Ifie, Mr. Scout Eyenuro, among others.

Ribadu, Folarin, Okowa, Agbaje, Others Win PDP Governorship Primaries

The PDP primaries exercises produced shocking results in some states. Most of the out-going governors such as Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State, Theodore Orji of Abia, Babangida Aliyu of Niger and Sule Lamido of Adamawa ‘delivered’ their favoured aspirants as candidates just as former Minister of State (Education), Mr. Nyesom Wike came out tops in Rivers in spite of pre-primaries opposition from some PDP elders and stakeholders in the state, while Mr. Jimi Agbaje emerged winner in Lagos.

After last-minute high-wire battle for delegates’ votes in which some aspirants offered mouth-watering sums of money and got delegates to swear. Chairman, Senate Committee on Health, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, yesterday, emerged PDP governorship candidate for Delta. He polled 406 votes. Olorogun David Edevbie, the consensus candidate of the Urhobo Progress Union (UPU), who also reportedly got the backing of the state government, scored 299 votes to come second.

Other results as announced by Sunday Kareem, the returning officer were as follows:  Victor Ochei (185 votes), Ndudi Elumelu (50 votes), Godsday Orubebe (49) and Godswill Obielum (22). Sylvester Monye, Ovie Omo-Agege and Sam Obi got 10 votes each;  Peter Okocha had six votes, Tony Obuh (five), Charles Emetulu (four), Kenneth Gbagi (two) and Mike Uwaka (one vote). One vote was voided.

Agents of some governorship aspirants in Delta State openly shared money to delegates, yesterday, at the venue of the primary, giving them Bible and oil to swear that they would not vote for another candidate. Reporters witnessed a case at about 4.00 pm when a delegate was offered N500,000 and there was a heated debate before he finally swore and collected his cash. Some aspirants offered delegates N1million each to vote for them and one reportedly gave 10,000 dollars each. One of the aspirants confirmed that he was aware other aspirants were bribing delegates, but he urged those who collected money to vote for him because he is the right candidate.

Credit: Vanguard Nigeria