The Delta APC Gubernatorial Campaign Organisation has insisted that the State Governor and Vice Presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, is a traitor, even as it applauded the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum (SMBLF) for calling out Atiku’s running mate during the weekend.
The SMBLF in a statement signed by Chief (Dr.) Edwin Kiagbodo Clark, Leader SMBLF/PANDEF; Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Leader, Afenifere; Dr. Dru Bitrus, President-General, Middle Belt Forum, and Ambassador (Prof.) George Obiozor, President-General, Ohaneze Ndigbo Worldwide, berated Okowa for stabbing the entire Southern Nigeria in the back just to clinch a Vice Presidential ticket.
They wrote: “It bears recalling that the 17 Governors of the Southern States of Nigeria, both of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC), under the Chairmanship of the Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, SAN, met in Asaba, the capital of Delta State on May 11, 2021, and took far-reaching decisions, including that, based on the principles of fairness, equity and justice, the presidency should rotate to the south, at the end of the statutory eight years of President Muhammadu Buhari’s tenure. And this very Governor Okowa was the host of that historic meeting. The Southern Governors later met again in Lagos, on July 5, where they reaffirmed their decision, and again in Enugu, on September 16, to restate the call that the presidency should rotate to the south in 2023.”
According to them, “Governor Okowa has, by his action, betrayed the trust reposed on him by his colleagues; the southern governors, the entire good people of southern Nigeria and all well-meaning Nigerians. He has made himself persona non grata, not only with SMBLF but all citizens who treasure our oneness and yearn for a more united and peaceful Nigeria.”
Their words: “It is regrettable that while most of Governor Okowa’s southern and northern counterparts have maintained gallant, patriotic deference to the unity and peace of the country, above blinkered political considerations, by their resolute stance on the rotation of the presidency to the south in 2023, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, the Chairman of the South-South Governors’ Forum, of all people, would gullibly and slavishly capitulated to the bonbon of absurdity. Thus, acceding to a situation whereby, one person rules for eight years and hands over to another of his stock, in a country of at least 360 ethnic groups. What a shame!”
The APC campaign organisation, in a statement by Ima Niboro, the Director of Communications and Media Strategy, also faulted Okowa’s claim on national television where he hinged his decision to accept the nomination on ‘party supremacy’.
“No matter the number of media interviews granted by the embattled governor, it doesn’t detract from the fact that he is a traitor, and the statement by our elders in Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum (SMBLF) that Governor Okowa ‘spent extensive sums of money to lobby for the position’ has vindicated us.
“We condemn the use of taxpayers’ funds and the collective resources of Deltans to fund personal political ambitions of a failed governor,” the statement stressed.
“The import of the Vice Presidential candidate’s betrayal is that anybody who dines with him should do so with a long spoon. A governor who betrayed his colleagues and the entire South for his personal ambition cannot be trusted,” he said.