Delta 2023: Esiso under fire over comment on Urhobo Governor 

Says Esiso is now an ethnic champion 

As group wants him to apologize  to Delta North/South urgently 

By Ndu Samuel, Asaba

A Delta State based pressure group ‘Concerned Deltans 2023’ have chided the Delta State chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party PDP  Barr. Kingsley Esiso over alleged comment on zoning of governorship position in the state, asking him to apologize  to Delta North and South Senatorial districts.

In a press statement issued on Wednesday by coordinator of the group Comrade Fidelis Ordia, a copy of which was sent to The Liberator Newspaper, the group noted  that Esiso’s tribal comments is capable of  placing PDP on a sour path of  precipice.

Esiso was alleged to have said that Urhobo governorship ambition by come 2023 is non-negotiable stating that PDP zoning in Delta State is by Senatorial districts not ethnicity.

While reacting to the comment, the group said “We would not have replied him as his sermon has shown gross ignorance of political developments in the ruling Party in Delta State but because he is the Chairman of the great PDP in the State.

 They noted  that the PDP chairman’s comment does not only  project him as an “ethnic champion, but also a chauvinist and a tribal jingoist”.

“We do not want to sound like Esiso is the biggest political error in Delta State as his statement has irredeemably posed a great danger to the fortune of this viral and noble Party of repute. As the Chairman of the ruling Party in the State, he does not need any lecture to know that he is supposed to be a neutral arbiter in the Patty’s elections no matter his political affiliations.”

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“Kingsley Esiso has betrayed the trust of his office and the oath he swore to protect and uphold the ideals of the Party. Governor Okowa should be mindful of the man he has chosen to lead the Party in the State. He should call Esiso to order before the man tear the Party apart.”

“On the issues Esiso has raised in his invidious statement, except he is telling Deltans that he lacked an understanding of Delta politics since 1999, Esiso cannot say zoning in the State is by senatorial districts”

“Since the State Party Chairman seems to be naive in the history of our recent past, let us educate him a bit. At the inception of the present democratic dispensation in 1999, two persons contested the gubernatorial election on the platform of People’s Democratic Party (PDP). They’re: Chief Felix Ibru (late) and Chief James Onanefe Ibori. The duo are all from the Urhobo ethnic group. Every other ethnic groups jettisoned their governorship ambitions to rally round these persons. At the end, Chief Ibori won the elections”.

“In 2003, knowing fully well that the Urhobos must complete their constitutional two terms in the government of Delta State, all other ethnic groups again, rest their oars to allow only Urhobo people to contest the election. Hence, Great Ovedje Ogboru contested on the platform of Alliance for Democracy (AD) against Ibori who again contested on the platform of PDP and won the election.”

“In 2007 when Ibori left office, the thinking of many Deltans, especially the non-Urhobo tribes was that the various political parties must feature only other tribes to contest the guber election since Urhobo people have completed their own. Alas, the Urhobo had more contestants for the governorship race than even all contestants from the other ethnic groups put together.”

“The likes of Sen. Pius Akpo Ewerido (late), Charles Obule, Ejaife Odebala, Oscar Ibru, Albert Okumagba amongst other Urhobo sons contested against Sen. Ifeanyi Okowa (representing Ika ethnic group) and Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan (representing Itsekiri ethnic group). Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan won the PDP primary and had to contest the real election against Great Ovedje Ogboru from Urhobo who contested on the platform of Democratic Peoples Party (DPP).”

“In Uduaghan’s second term, Chief Great  Ogboru contested against him on the platform of DPP and lost. Uduaghan’s two terms were supposed to be the exclusive right of Delta South Senatorial District to contest as it was in the case of Ibori but the Urhobos breached the zoning agreement.”

“Similarly in 2015 after Uduaghan completed his statutory two terms, Deltans again agreed in principle to cede power to the Delta North Senatorial District since the Central and the South had gotten theirs. The Urhobos came calling again and contested against the Delta North aspirants. The likes of David Edevbie threw their caps in the ring under the platform of PDP. Surprisingly, Gov. Okowa won the primary election. He had to contend with Great Ovedje Ogboru who contested under the platform of Labour Party (LP) and O’tega Emerho of APC.”

“In 2019, again Ogboru contested against Okowa under the platform of All Progressive Congress (APC). The question now kissing our lips is whether there has been a zoning arrangement in the State? If there was any, has it been faithfully adhered to? Lastly, if there is any breach of of the gentleman agreement then who breached it? We are sure Esiso can answer these questions gleaned from the information above.”

“Mr. Esiso should note that the Governorship primary is a national election of which he has less roles to play. If he’s however thinking of tampering with the delegate list to favour his preferred aspirant then he should just say goodbye to the survival of PDP in the State. 

“The Bayelsa lesson will be a child’s play if he tries to tamper with the delegate list. We hope that Governor Okowa will immediately call him to order because PDP is on a sour path to precipice if the Chairman continues with his insidious attitude”.

“He Esiso should for the sake of peace and our collective togetherness in PDP for over the years immediately apologize to the people of Delta North and South Senatorial Districts over his reckless statement. If he wants the PDP to survive in the State beyond 2023 then he should refrain from making such divisive comments. 

“We do not want to believe that the State Party Chairman and his Urhobo people who sold their senatorial seat to the opposition APC are again planning to destroy PDP so that they can work for their APC governorship candidate in 2023. We wish to remind them that Delta North and South senatorial districts will resist any such move. We will not allow Esiso and his Urhobo people’s political apostasy to destroy PDP in the State.”

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