ONU–IKA NIGERIA BEMOANS THE CONTINUED MARGINALIZATION OF IKA PEOPLE; RESOLVES TO SPONSOR POLITICAL CANDIDATES

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Onu Ika, the mouthpiece and the apex socio-cultural and political
organization of the Ika people has condemned the continued marginalization of
the Ika ethnic nationality. In a communiqué issued at the end of its meeting on
Saturday, February 20, 2010 at Agbor, the group through the Head of the
Collective Leadership, Fortune Ebie said “we re-visited and reappraised our
status and activities over the years. While observing in particular the
political disunity among the Ika people, with the concomitant disadvantages to
our people, Onu Ika resolved that its ideology of being apolitical has now become
inapplicable in the light of today’s political reality, if the unity of our
politicians is to be achieved and if the people of Ika ethnic nationality are
going to have any relevance whatsoever in the affairs of Delta State.

 

“Therefore, Onu Ika hereby resolved to transmute itself to be more
politically active in all affairs of our dear Delta State, without prejudice to
its political, socio- cultural and other activities. In effect, what we are
saying is that a situation where we say we are not really interested in
politics no longer holds. We are changing our position. We will now be very
actively interested in politics, both partisan and otherwise. That is to say,
we will be more involved in the various political parties as long as our own
people are members of these parties.

 

“If you don’t have political power your educational, financial, and
social power are worthless and irrelevant. If you don’t have political power,
the politician can use a Minister of Finance, through a stroke of the pen, send
a tax bill to the House of Assembly which can reduce a very rich Ika person to
a pauper. The docility and complacency of the Ika man is hereby terminated
today.”

 

Fielding questions from newsmen after issuing the communiqué, the
Head of the Collective Leadership, Fortune Ebie maintained that from
henceforth, Ika sons and daughters in Government at various levels will now be
answerable to the people. He added that the era when they were left to operate
as they deem right without recourse to the wishes and needs of the people was
over.

 

“If you are in a political Party A and you are not doing what Ika
people want you to do, we will not hesitate to draw your attention and condemn
you. And if somebody is in a party and our people are not benefitting from it,
and another of our son is in another party that is being beneficial to us, we
will urge our people to support such party that is ready and willing to help
us. That is what we are going to be doing.” he explained

 

Ebie, responding to the issue of marginalization, maintained that
the people of Ika elthnic nationality have been seriously sidelined, and
therefore emphasized that it was what informed the decision of Onu Ika to
jettison its apolitical approach to all affairs in Delta State “We have been
extremely marginalized. Look at our streets, they are all in very deplorable
state. The Old Lagos/Asaba road we have been talking about is yet to be
dualised Boji-Boji, metropolis major road is the only road that has no street
light in the whole of Delta State. What about the dredging of Orogodo river,
nothing is being done about it. It seems the project has been abandoned. The
contractor has even abandoned his equipment there. I don’t know whether the
place has become a dump site, I don’t know whether they are trying to dam the
river.

 

“Whenever I am asked if Ika is being marginalized, I ask how many
Permanent Secretaries of Ika origin do we have in government? How many judges
do we have, only recently did we get one elevated to that position. How many
Ambassadors, okay we have a High Commissioner. You can see what we are saying
about Ika being marginalized” he stated 

 

The Head of the Collective Leadership said that Onu Ika was
therefore calling on the state governor, His Excellency, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan
to address the issues raised as according to him, the Ika people have never
been in rebellion or confrontation but have instead been supporting him in
every way. “What we are saying is that we are not getting anything but have
been marginalized. Go to the road leading to where I come from, Agbor
–Alidinma, it is very deplorable state. What about power, our people have been
in darkness for long. The stocklist of what we have benefited from 1999 to date
is marginal. So, that is why we have decided that the socio-cultural aspect of
Onu Ika will be maintained but we will also jettison our former position and
let our sons in government know that we want performance. Otherwise we will be
putting all the blames on them for not representing us adequately as we should
be represented as an ethnic nationality when asked if Onu Ika will be
sponsoring candidates in the 2011 election, Ebie said “the truth is that as
election approach and we examine our position, if other ethnic groups organized
like Onu Ika are sponsoring candidates, there is no reason why Onu Ika, should
not. Such candidates will be supported financially, materially and otherwise.
Those who don’t have money will go on leg campaigns, those who have money will
contribute. Infact, our thinking is that we should be able to agree on
consensus candidates. We are now politically involved. We have left them all
these years to be doing their own and as a first step towards changing that,
Onu Ika has resolved that we are going to call all our sons and daughters who
hold political positions and those who hold positions in government and in
their respect political parties, to a very urgent meeting, and after
consultations with then we will let our people know the position of
things.        

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