A prominent Ijaw traditional High Chief from Gbaramatu Kingdom of Delta State, Comrade (Chief) Mulade Sheriff disclosed this in Warri at the weekend while speaking with newsmen on the 2023 governorship candidacy in Delta State.
Chief Mulade stressed that an Ijaw candidate is preferred for Delta State gubernatorial seat, and assured Deltans that the Bold Movement for an Ijaw Governor in 2023 would soon be launched. The Ibe-Seremowei of Gbaramatu Kingdom in Warri South West LGA of Delta State expressed his readiness to lead the Bold Movement aimed at lobbying and advocating for support from all other ethnic groups in the State, whom he said got the massive and genuine support of Ijaw people in the past, facilitating the achievement of peaceful power transition in Delta State since 1999.
He explained that the Bold Movement for 2023 Governorship race in the State is based on the premise that no single ethnic group can produce the Governor of Delta State without the support of others, which is why the Ijaw people want the cooperation and support of other tribes for a fair, equitable and just power rotation in the State.
He noted that the Ijaw people gave maximum support to Delta Central, Delta South and Delta North Senatorial Districts to produce the Governor, while also providing the economic base for the overall development of the State, adding that it is now the turn of Ijaw to pilot the State’s affairs as the Governor.
Chief Mulade who is a peace advocate said the Bold Movement had consulted far and wide with critical stakeholders in Ijaw land and therefore makes bold to invite all capable Ijaw sons and daughters who have the ability to pilot the affairs of the State as Governor, to indicate and declare their interest irrespective of their party affiliations.
The renowned peace and environmental rights advocate emphasized that the Ijaws would not impose a candidate on Deltans, as they have commenced an in-house shopping for the most qualified, competent and capable candidate that would be widely accepted by all ethnic groups in Delta State.
He described the power rotation formula among the different Senatorial Districts of the State, initiated by a one-time Governor, Chief James Onanefe Ibori, as a laudable idea of fairness, equity and justice. He however, noted that the first round of the governorship (Osusu) rotation formula rounded off with the Delta North, producing Senator (Dr) Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa as the current Governor.
While commending Chief Ibori for midwifing the unwritten governorship zoning arrangement in the State since 1999, Chief Mulade said the three senatorial districts of the State have taken their turns to produce the Governor, sressing that the zoning arrangement does not provide that the first Senatorial District to produce the Governor should start the second round of the Governorship (Osusu) to produce the Governor again.
He said the Bold Movement wants a display of maturity, understanding, cooperation and oneness by all Deltans towards achieving fairness, equity and justice for the Ijaw people who have been very supportive by sacrificing their natural resources for the overall development of the State
Citing the economic contributions of the Ijaw ethnic group as a factor, the Peace Ambassador lamented that the area that contributes more to the revenue of the State, is the most neglected and impoverished, and therefore urged other ethnic groups particularly Urhobo, to support Ijaw for the 2023 number one seat.
He said the Bold Movement would critically examine candidates from all political parties, and ensure that Ijaw people unite to project a single candidate for the Dennis Osadebe Government House, Asaba come 2023, for the benefit of all Deltans.