By: Azuka Osunde
The months ahead are going to be very interesting and action packed for us from Ikaland. In the next few weeks, the National Political Reform Conference (NPRC) will be submitting her reports, reports that will guide the 2007 elections and the rat race of who is to become the next Governor, Representative and Senate member.
On the election as Governor, from Ikaland, we have three prominent citizens eyeing the Anwai House come 2007 to take over from James Ibori, as he has completed the madatory eight years as Governor of Delta State. The three Ikas are Cairo Nwa-Ojuigbo representing Ika at the House of Representative, Ifeanyi Nwa-Okowa, Commisioner of Health, Delta State and Godson Nwa-Echegile, Director of Finance, Federal Housing Authority here refers to as Angels for Charley.
Cairo Ojuigbo, a Medical Doctor and presently member of Federal House of Assembly representing Ika is one of the arrowhead for the govenorship race come 2007, he is the House of Represetative Committee Chairman on Petroleum and he is rumoured to have a lot a support from the youth because of his age, and the elders are said to also admire him and the Labour Union is said to be behind him because of his promises to them.
Ojuigbo a no-nonsense man is said not to be in the good books of the present Governor because of his aspiration and the recent incident that led to the demolition of his proposed campaign house gives filler to this cold war. The house was demolished by the Delta State Town Planning Authority.
But with the above hinderance, he is determined to run for the number one post, as he is putting all necessary logistics together to actualize his dreams. A meeting held recently at the Grand Hotel, Asaba, by PDP stakeholders in Delta North Senatorial District for a consensus candidate was met with a shocker when one of the delegates stood up and nominated Ojuigbo as their candidate come 2007.
The second Angel for Charley is Godson Echegile 43, he has a background in Actuarial Science and Finance/ Management, an Ex-Banker and presently a Director in the Federal Housing Authority, he is also the Managing Director, Chief Executive, Celina Industries, Ota, a company turning waste products into export potentials (waste to wealth). He is turning sawdusts into briquettes for the heating of homes in Europe and for the bakery industries. Recently, he won award for this outstanding fits.
If posters wins an election, Godson will be counted as the next Governor of Delta State as his posters dotted all corners of Delta State, he is the first to do this, but earlier, when some Delta North Youth wrote a letter of petition to the President to relieve him of his job at the Federal Housing Authority he denied the idea that he is eyeing the Anwai House, Asaba.
Godson Echegile, had his political training from one of the foremost Nigeria politician, Tony Anenih, the former Federal Minister of Works and Housing (Mr. Fix It) as he is popularly called. Speaking recenty in a dinner party held in his honour in Lagos, he stated his resolved to make Delta State an investment state and this aspirations, he said, were carefully etched in his political slogans, which he christened "Delta: My Definition of Service"
The third of the Angels for Charley is Ifeanyi Okowa, a Medical Doctor was born on the 8th of July, 1959 and received his MB B.S from the University of Ibadan.
It is only a rumour, but for long, he has been touted to be eyeing the Anwai House, he is a serving Commisioner of Health in the present Government and a close aid to the present Governor James Ibori, before his present posting, he has served in the ministries of Agriculture and Water Resources. He is also the Medical Director of Victory Marternity, Boji Boji Owa.
Okowa started his career as a Medical Doctor at Igbanke General Hospital and was later appointed, Secretary of Ika Local Government, after the creation of Ika North, he contested and won election there as Chairman and since then his political star has been shining.
At the beginning of his political career, I can still remember, many were afraid that as a medical doctor, he has no business going into the mukky water of Nigerian politics, but with time and his achievements today, he has proven critics wrong and if his star continue to shine, he will be sworn in as the next Governor of Delta State come 2007.
With his long career in the Nigeria politics, he may be considered ripe to be a govenor come 2007. He is seen as a grassroot mobiliser and grassroot politicians always make the best candidates. So his chances, if he comes out to run, will be very bright.
As we watch the political atmosphere unfold, we urged the three angels to come together, speak among themselves and bring out someone from among them who can represent Ikaland for the governorship race so we do not miss out. The time has come to stop playing the second fiddle. We have produced a deputy governor in the person of Simeon Ebonka who was deputy to Ibru, so this time around, we want to be the first. The time is ripe for it.
As we the Ikas prepare to carry the touch and occupy the Anwai House come 2007, we should all avoid one thing: violence. The destruction of ones lives in the name of politics should be a thing far from us. We should learn from the examples of big democracies like the Americans and the Britons who remain calm no matter who wins the election. The major thing is that the person is going to represent the entire state or country.
As we approach 2007, the usual sharing of rice, tomatoes and onions will soon go in force, as parents, we should reject it for whoever that gives you rice or tomatoes buys your vote and when he wins, your children will be the worst for it, you will be required to buy diesel for the generating plants when you are admitted into the hospital.
To our three angels, we donâ€™t ask for much. From you, we ask that you do those things that will better our daily existence: good roads, portable water supply, good medical care and avoidance of the situation where a sick person is required to buy diesel to fuel the hospital generating plant before he or she is operated upon, funtional schools with motivated teachers and well equiped library. These we ask of you when you get to the Anwai House.