By Ugwu Uchemba
Some people have come to see our next door Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, as a devilish and hateful person. Others see him as a treacherous pretender and opportunist who would sell his brothers and homeland for a mess of porridge.
These all have manifested in the poison he has brought upon the PDP both at the national level and in his Delta State.
Just to be able to retain control of the state he does not care about the quality and competence of who succeeds him in the interest of the development of the state.
He is arrogantly foisting an unqualified candidate of the PDP on his people and has borrowed over N200b in the name of the state to fund that and his personal ambition to be Vice President, mortgaging his state to gruesome financial difficulties in the future.
The problem with Sheriff Oborevwori, the Speaker of the House of Assembly whom he is pushing enabled is so glaring.
A school certificate is contracted between a student and an issuing authority. What the student brings to the table is his natural person, identified by his name, date of birth and passport photo. The issuing authority identifies itself with the name of its institution, the status of the certificate he is issuing, the signature of the Authorising Officer and it’s assessment of the performance or scores of the student.
In the case of Sheriff, WAEC issued a certificate to someone it identified as Oborevwori O Francis. It also identified the person by his date of birth which was stated as November 12, 1979, a reasonable age for someone who wrote WASCE in 1999.
What Sheriff has done is to completely change all the important natural human identification elements contained in the certificate through affidavits to suit it to his own person.
First, he seeks to change the date, month and year of birth stated in the certificate as November 12, 1979 to his own which is June 19, 1963.
Second, he seeks to change the name by adding Sheriff alongside Francis so as to connect him with the certificate.
Told that these may not suffice to appropriate the certificate to himself, he moved to assemble and unite all the conflicting claims with a Deed of Pool which he backdated to 2011 and signed into gazette by himself on May 5, 2022, just a few weeks to the state PDP primary.
All those “corner corner” actions to change the identity on the certificate to fit his own identity and without any sign of approach to nor consent, approval nor recognition of WAEC, the issuing authority, is acting through the back door which clearly is dubious.
No matter the technicalities pleaded in court or how much bribe they give to judges to cover up, Deltans can see through it all and it is unbecoming, indeed wicked betrayal of his people, for Okowa who claims to be a leader and Christian to insist on imposing such a character to govern his own people, just for his personal aggrandisement.
Okowa is also visiting the same treachery against the entire Southern Nigeria.
Everyone had expected that after Buhari’s tenure the Presidency should be rotated to the South. All Southern Governors converged at his instance in Asaba to declare and demand so. That encouraged the likes of Nyesom Wike, Udom Emmanuel in the PDP and others in the APC to enter the primaries of their parties.
While even the Northern Governors of the APC recognised and honoured that sense of equity, Okowa sold out in the PDP to declare for yet another Northern presidency.
He seems to be enjoying it as Northern leaders of the PDP are abusing Wike everyday for challenging a situation where the Presidential candidate, the National Chairman and the BOT Chairman of the party are still all Northerners.
He fails to see the insulting and arrogant loopsidedness against his own people, just because he wants to be Vice President.
There is no surprise about him though. Apart from being South South, he does not feel nor empathise with what the deep Niger Delta people and oil producing areas feel that makes them agitate for equity. It is no wonder that he now spite the likes of Chief James Ibori who along with Chief Diepreye Alamesiegha fought and suffered for the added revenue crumbs from their own natural wealth which the Niger Delta states enjoy today.
Not also being a core Igbo man he does not feel what the South Easterners feel that makes them agitate. In fact, he reportedly denied being an Igbo some time ago.
Ironically, it is even members of the Afenifere in Yoruba land that are upholding their belief that, for a sense national equity, balance, reconciliation and healing, the Presidency should go to Igbo land.
All he cares about is him and himself alone, yet he is expecting that the South East and South South should vote the PDP just so that he can be Vice President.
As our people say, may no family bear such a child that can betray his own people.
(Ugwu Uchemba wrote from Onitsha)