By David Diai
Delta State Governor, Senator (Dr.) Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa has been described as a genius who not only understands the processes of governance, but equally possesses an impressive articulation, visionary brilliance and astute managerial acumen to ensure progressive development in all sectors and lead Delta State to greater heights.
This plaudit was delivered by the Special Assistant on Special Duties to the Presidential Amnesty Programme Chairman, Chief Henry Nonso Ugbolue, when he fielded questions with select newsmen during the ordination of his brother Mr. Chijioke Ugbolue as a Deacon of the Ebenezer Baptist Church, Iselle Uku, Headquarters of Aniocha North Local government area, Delta State.
Ugbolue said that having collaborated closely with Senator Okowa during his stint as the Senator representing Delta North Senatorial zone in the National Assembly, he was perfectly placed to access the Delta governor and has arrived at the conclusion that Okowa is indeed the right man to take up the mantle of the Governorship of Delta State.
“I interacted very closely with Senator Okowa, who as a member of the Senate Committee on Niger Delta, worked closely with my office, the Presidential Amnesty programme Office and I can tell you that he is a brilliant man who hardly makes mistakes. Okowa never makes mistakes in whatever he does because he so meticulous, pays great attention to detail and ensures that all the perspectives are well researched and covered before he makes his conclusions. In fact the man is simply a genius,” he said.
Waxing lyrical and sentimental over the emergence of an Anioma son as the governor of Delta State, the Special Duties Aide to the Presidential Amnesty Programme Chairman, said it was a dream come true for the Anioma people and the fact that it was Senator who emerged, has made the victory even sweeter as Anioma has produced one its finest sons to be governor of Delta state.
“We have been praying for it and we worked hard to achieve it. We believed in Senator Okowa and we left no stone unturned to ensure he emerged victorious. It is an emotional moment for us. A dream come true for the Anioma people and all those who believed in Senator Okowa. We thank God for giving us the victory. Okowa is indeed Godsent and God did it for us”, Ugbolue enthused.
He equally expressed the feeling that as the first Anioma Governor in Delta State, Senator Okowa has a huge responsibility on his shoulders as the people expect so much from him and given his excellent track record in administration and leadership, Okowa himself knows that he cannot afford to fail, first as an Anioma son, but most importantly as Governor of all Deltans, adding however that he was very confident Governor Okowa, especially from the initial pronouncements he has made particulalrly in the effort to make Asaba a befitting and worthy state capital, will excel in discharging his responsibilities as Governor and in the process, bring prosperity to all Deltans as promised.
Speaking on the hopes and expectations of Anioma people from their other representatives at the national Assembly, Ugbolue affirmed that he was working in consonance with key Anioma opinion leaders and stakeholders to set a Legislative agenda outlining the desires and needs of Anioma people from their representatives.
“We worked very hard and voted for all our Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidates; Hon. Mrakpor, Senator Nwaoboshi, Engr. Emeka Nwaobi and President Goodluck Jonathan in the general elections because we believed and still believe that these were the best people to address our needs and desires. However, we will not just rest on our oars now that some of them have won but will develop a Legislative agenda which we hope will serve as a blue print and action plan on how to respond to our needs and aspirations. I worked as Special Assistant to the Senate President for three years and practically drafted most of the laws that guides the operations of the National Assembly today, so I know what I am talking about”, he said.
Commenting on the 2015 general elections, Chief Ugbolue only had words of praise and great admiration for President Goodluck Jonathan over his decision to courageously concede defeat, which not only shamed and confounded the critics who predicted that Nigeria would disintegrate, but also saved the country from the impending anarchy that was dangerously brewing, if he had acted otherwise.
“President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan is a great man and a visionary leader. He saw the chaos and anarchy that would have engulfed the country even before many of us realized it and took the brave and courageous action to concede defeat and save the country. The very fact that the card reader failed to identify him, the President of the country, more than three times, and right in front of the whole watching world, was sufficient reason for him to have immediately ordered the cancellation of the elections until the process was perfected and he would have been quite justified if he had done it.
“This was a man and a leader who had the armed forces and all the powers of government at his beck and call, but instead of doing what some other lesser mortals would have done when the Card reader failed him, he showed great composure, spiritual foresight, admirable magnanimity and unparalleled statesmanship by allowing the elections to continue and today we are all enjoying the peace he enthroned by his act of selflessness. He is indeed a great man and a great leader, as even President Buhari and the rest of the global community have attested” he said.
Ugbolue further averred that after the long years of having the PDP as the ruling party in the country, Nigerians had simply become jaded and complacent and this, coupled with the harsh economic realities occasioned by the astronomical fall in oil prices and widespread media propaganda on massive corruption in the government, compelled them to desire for a change in leadership.
“What happened during the general elections was that contrary to the much trumpeted change which many believe was achieved with the elections, the people had reached a point where they simply wanted to see the end of the PDP administration. Nigerians did not really ‘Vote for’ change. What Nigerians did in the general elections was to ‘Vote Out’ the PDP and not ‘Vote for’ change in that sense of the word. They simply wanted to see some personnel change and some new people as leaders of the country and if the structural change occurred in the process then the better.
While expressing the same worries as most Nigerians over the slow pace of the President Buhari administration to fully take off, he however urged Nigerians, particularly those directly involved with the Presidential Amnesty programme, to be patient with the new administration, noting President Buhari had already pledged his full support to the programme, which is expected to wind down in December 2015, but things are a bit slow now as a substantive head has not been appointed to take over the running of the programme and indeed other administrative positions of government.
Chief Ugbolue, who is also the Ekwueme Of Issele Mkpitime Kingdom, in his home town community in Delta State, described himself as a core grassroots politician, who has always kept faith with his people, and while admonishing the so called political leaders in Aniocha Local Government Area to lead by example and allow the people to determine their elected representatives, added that that he would always avail himself to contribute his quota to the development and well being of not only his people, but also the Anioma nation and indeed Delta State as a whole, whenever he was called upon to do so.