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SOUTH UPDATE

Delta South Senate: Go and do more, Isoko monarchs tell Uduaghan

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Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan (m) with traditional rulers in Isoko ethnic nationality in Delta State during the former governor’s visit to the monarchs on Wednesday 24th January, 2019.

Ahead of the 2019 National Assembly elections in February, traditional rulers of Isoko ethnic nationality in Delta State have expressed their desire to have the immediate-past governor of the state and All Progressives Congress 2019 Delta South senatorial candidate, Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan represent the district at the upper legislative chamber for a change in status quo, and for the sake of progress in the area.

Speaking for traditional rulers of Isoko South in Oleh on Wednesday, His Royal Majesty, Anthony Ovrawah, Omogha 1, the Odio-Ologbo of Oleh, said Uduaghan had the blessings and support of the royal fathers for the senate seat.

“I have opened the door of the senate to Dr. EEU because he is an illustrious son of Isoko nation and we have confidence in him. We know him. Isoko nation benefited immensely during your tenure. You are one of us.

“I recall when you were governor, you paid me an unexpected visit. I was almost at the point of death.  I didn’t complain to you or anyone close to you of any ailment but as a true medical doctor, you detected I was sick. You insisted that your personal ambulance take me to Oghara Teaching Hospital where I was treated free of charge.

“Before your visit, my people and I had resolved to throw our support behind you and the Itsekiris. The position [senatorial seat] belongs to three children. One child should not monopolize it. It is mother’s breast, only one child cannot suck it.

“Uduaghan has the blessings and support of Isoko nation for the senatorial seat. You’re our candidate for the senate. We picked you not because of APC but for who you are.”

“This is your time; we saw what you did as a state governor. Go to the senate and do more. Your name is already in the senate. Isoko is sending you,” the monarch declared.

The former governor also met with traditional rulers from Isoko North at the palace of His Royal Majesty, Anthony Ogbogbo, Ebuka 1, Ovie of Ozoro kingdom, in continuation of his consultation with traditional rulers in Delta South for his senatorial ambition.

Speaking at Ozoro, HRM Ebuka 1, Ovie of Ozoro kingdom, who spoke on behalf of the traditional rulers, said monarchs in the state would not forget in a hurry Uduaghan’s support for the traditional institution.

The monarchs noted that Uduaghan as a governor accorded the traditional institution its due respect and as well, raised the status of royal fathers to an enviable position in the country.

“The other kings from all the other kingdoms in Isoko North are here to see the man who elevated their status. You did well for us. You fought for traditional rulers and the sanctity of our culture. You won our hearts with your issue-based speech. It is rare.

“We (traditional rulers) in Delta State will not forget you in a hurry. You did well as a governor. You won our hearts with your issue-based speech. We pray God to grant your aspiration with a resounding victory,” the Ozoro king said.

Uduaghan, while speaking during the visit to the two palaces, said he was in Isoko land to solicit the support of Isoko Nation for his senatorial race in the next month’s National Assembly election in Delta South.

He noted that as a secretary to the state government (SSG) and later governor of Delta State, he is well abreast with the role traditional rulers play in ensuring peace in the state.

The former governor also told the monarchs that if elected as senator, he would sponsor bills and law that will give constitutional backing to the traditional institution in the country as well as ensure that their pains are addressed by the federal government.

“As an SSG and secretary to the State Security Council and later as a governor of the state, I know the enormous role traditional rulers play in helping to ensure peace and security.

“Kings have spiritual powers. Somehow, they are gifted with the act of mediation and peace.

“We would have been experiencing more violence if not for the intervention of monarchs especially from Isoko who ensured that their domains were peaceful during my time as governor.

“One of the reasons I am seeking your support to go to the senate is that I believe that our traditional institution should have legal backing in their role in ensuring peace in the country.

“If elected as senator I will also push for the recognition of monarchs in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which would give them a constitutional role to their people.

“I also believe that as people from oil producing communities, we should have a major stake in the ownership of the oil and gas companies in our communities. Through this, our communities will benefit more from the oil and gas that is derived from our area.”

“I will also push for the cleaning of impacted communities. Based on my experience as a governor, there is so much we can do to create jobs for unemployed youths in the region.

“I will push for communities to have at least 5 per cent ownership of companies operating in host communities in Delta South. This will create jobs for men, women and youths.

“I will also push for communities to be in charge of security of government and companies’ properties in their domain.

“Pipeline surveillance contract should be a form of empowerment to our youths but they are only paid peanuts at the end of the day because some persons who are not even from our region are the middlemen. When I become senator, the contract would come straight to our communities so that our youths would be empowered.

“The destruction of localized refineries otherwise known by the government as illegal refineries further causes more harm as much as our boys “cooking” crude oil in the creeks. When I become senator, I will push for the legalization of these localized “refineries”. This will ensure positive engagement across the value chain,” Uduaghan concluded.

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SOUTH UPDATE

Why Prince Nonso Nwoko is facing terrorism trial

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Idumuje Igboko is located in Aniocha, North of Delta State and bordered to the East by Idumuje-Unor, Ekpon or Akpu to the North West, Ohodua to the North East, Igbodo to the West and Onicha-Ugbo to the South.

Idumuje-Ugboko was founded in the 17th century. Historians are of the opinion that a core group of settlers led by Nwoko, his siblings and relations founded the community.

Idumuje-Ugboko is made of four villages. They are Atuma, Ogbe-Obi, Ogbe-Ofu and Onicha-Ukwu (Ogbe-Akwu). The four villages are reputed to have migrated from various towns and kingdoms in and around the present states of Delta, Edo and Ondo.

For instance, the Atuma village is said to have migrated from Owo, a town in present-day Ondo State, the Ogbe-Ofu from Emu, an Ishan speaking town in present-day Edo state, the Ogbe-Obi from Uzebu in the old Benin kingdom and Onicha-Ukwu from Onicha-Ukwu, a town in present-day Delta State. Among the four villages, the Onicha-Ukwu was the last of the villages to settle in Idumuje-Ugboko.

There are 16 Ebos and 24 quarters, commonly known as Idumu. The town is relatively known for its peaceful coexistence of his people since it was founded until thugs unleased mayhem on the community. After the mayhem, they left their trademark sorrow, tears and blood. The thugs were arrested and are currently facing criminal charges at the Federal High Court, Abuja

Chief Chris Ogwu is the prime minister of Ugboko, a former editor and retired journalist. He told this reporter how the incident happened. “Let me tell you, I was one of the victims of the mayhem. I was brutalized and my properties damaged by these boys. They abducted me and took me to the palace in front of Nonso where I was beaten up mercilessly.

“Between March 23rd and 26th, 2017, they unleashed mayhem on the Idumuje Ugboko community, attacked residents in their homes with guns, small axes, machetes, and sticks.

In the evening of 23rd of March, alarms were raised in the community by women and boys who were running helter-skelter and screaming.

“Upon stopping a few of them and asking what the problem was, it was learnt that thugs had invaded the residence of one Mr. Kennedy Nedu Iloh and had abducted him to an unknown destination. A search party made up of friends, family members and well-wishers later that night found and rescued him in the palace. His abductors had fled the scene on sighting his rescuers approaching their location’

“The next day, I, Chief Christopher Chukwuka Ogwu, the Iyase traditional prime minister of the Idumuje Ugboko Kingdom was seated in front of my house about 10 am when suddenly armed thugs attacked my home. They smashed the windscreens of two of my cars which were packed in front of my house – a Mercedes Benz 300 V-boot and a Toyota Camry (2.4cc). They entered the cars and stole some valuables such as telephones, cash, documents, etc. Meanwhile, I was abducted from my home to the palace grounds where I was ordered to lie on the grass after I had been thoroughly beaten up. Upon my return home, I found my home had been broken into and some of my valuables looted.

‘In continuation of these attacks, on the 25th and 25th, 21 other homes were similarly attacked at night with armed thugs roaming the community from village to village targeting homes of persons who supported the allocation of land to Lina’s International, a holding company owned by Prince Ned Nwoko who had applied to His Royal Majesty the Obi of Idumuje Ugboko for 90 hectares to build a sport university in Ugboko. His Royal Majesty (now late) was progressively inclined towards the university and had set up a 21-man land allocation of committee from amongst the membership of the Obi in Council (the official law making organ of the kingdom).

“I can tell you without mincing words that the thugs were sent to unleash the mayhem. At this time, Mr. Peter Bama was the chairman of local vigilante group set up in the community.

Also during the mayhem, Peter Bama’s home was one of those attacked. The thugs removed from his home some of the weapons and motorcycles which well-meaning members of the community had provided for the vigilante group. We reported the loss of the weapons and the motorcycles to the police who immediately gave assurance that they would investigate the robbery.”

Unfortunately, few months later, when a new vigilante group was launched in the community, the same supposedly lost weapons and motorcycles were released to them by the new tenants in the palace.

It would therefore appear that the palace harboured some of the items removed from victims’ homes. People have therefore drawn the conclusion that Prince Nonso sponsored the attacks but he had denied it in the past saying he did not send the thugs to attack anybody.

On the recent campaign of calumny against Prince Ned Nwoko, he said “those behind the said campaign want to divert attention from the criminal proceedings for murder and terrorism believing that if they raise false allegations against me I will tell the complainants to withdraw the matter in Abuja.”

The thugs are currently in Kuje prison because they couldn’t meet their bail conditions. They were granted bail of N50 million each.

 

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SOUTH UPDATE

COVID-19: UK returnees in Delta flouting self-isolation precautions, doctor cries out

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By Iteveh Ekpokpobe

(COVID-19 Updates) –   Delta State Epidemiologist, Dr. Richard Ikwuogu has raised alarm over three of Okpanam indigenes who recently returned from the United Kingdom, for flaunting the 14 days mandatory self isolation precautions against the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

The alarm was contained in a message circulating on WhatsApp which read, “I am Dr. R.O.C Ikwuogu, Delta State Epidemiologist. I had a bitter experience todaý at Okpanam. The Epidemiology unit received report of Emeka Ijeh a returnee from London on 23/3/2020 who refused to isolate.”

“My SDSNO placed a call to him but the man was full of abuses on the SDSNO. We went we the intent of discussing why he should self isolate but because of the phone call experience, we went to the Ogoani of Okpanam who asked the Chairman if vigilante group in Okpanam to lead us to the place.”

“On getting to his house opposite the Omu of Okpanam. He was informed that some persons are looking for him. He came down and while we tried to exchange pleasantries, he started abusing us that we are infringing on his privacy.”

“When I tried to explain, he said that I would have the disease someday and ordered us out of his compound saying he is a WHO staff. We left quietly but I never knew that he was following us.”

“I will send to you what happened thereafter. The HCH could not come to our aid and the Police did nothing because no authority spoke on the matter.”

Confirming the report, Dr. Richard Ikwuogu, via a telephone chat with our correspondent, disclosed that their investigation was based on rumours which were however confirmed.

He disclosed that the first reported case was currently adhering to the regulations while the other two were willing to and had.

According to him, there was no suspected nor confirmed case of Corona Virus infection, so far, in Delta State.

Ikwuogu explained that a person must show symptoms of the virus before he or she is declared a suspect.

He urged Deltans to remain steadfast with the precautionary measures spelt out by the state government.

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SOUTH UPDATE

[BREAKING] COVID-19: Edo speaker tests positive

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COVID-19: Edo speaker tests positive
Edo State Speaker, Festus Okiye

The speaker of the Edo state House of Assembly, Frank Okiye, has tested positive to COVID-19. Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, disclosed this Wednesday while briefing journalists, THE WITNESS reports.

He said the state is taking measures to tackle further spread of the virus in the state.

The Chief Medical Director of Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Prof. Sylvania Okogbenin, had on Monday announced that Edo recorded its first case.

Shaibu said Governor Godwin Obaseki had also gone into isolation following his contact with the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari, and Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, in Abuja.

Shaibu said Okiye, who travelled to the United Kingdom, went into self-isolation immediately after his return at the Irrua Specialist Hospital, Irrua, Esan Central Local Government Area of Edo State.

He noted that the two persons the speaker got in close contact with were his wife and daughter, whose samples have been taken and the results came out negative.

“He sent his sample for testing and the test came back positive. He is in a stable condition and his family members have been tested and the tests came back negative,” the Edo deputy governor stated.

Detail later….

 

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