Paul Osuyi, Asaba
The publication of list of governorship candidates of various political parties in Delta State for the 2019 election is raising dust among some chieftains of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
While the name of incumbent Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and several others had no issues, renowned political economist and a contender for the APC ticket, Prof. Pat Utomi, rejected the publication of Great Ogboru as the party’s candidate.
Utomi said Ogboru’s name was published in defiance to a subsisting court order, a situation he described as brazen breach of the rule of law, indicating that the party has given up on Delta State.
He said: “In view of brazen breaches of rule of law, the US Ambassador, recently, expressed his concerns and noted that undermining the rule of law was worst offence than corruption.
“The governorship primary held in Asaba by the Jones Erue faction, which produced Ogboru as candidate, was a complete farce. It was treasonable felony and should be prosecuted, otherwise, it becomes a precedent for contempt of the rule of law.
“Considering the security and international implications, I decided to seek redress in court. The exercise and its aftermath showed that the Ogboru/Omo-Agege faction, which the Erue State Working Committee (SWC) stands for, is unpopular, not credible, without integrity and not a true representation of Delta APC.
“The faction that represents the broader group of APC members is the Cyril Ogodo-led SWC, which was constitutionally elected through a credible congress and formally inaugurated by the former APC national chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun. In deference to the party’s national leadership, we had followed its directive on the adoption of the consent judgment before an Asaba court rejected it.”
On his next move should the legal option fail and Great Ogboru remains on INEC list as Delta APC governorship candidate, he said: “I have offers from some platforms; the African Democratic Congress (ADC) and
Social Democratic Party (SDP), were parties I had worked with. But, the idea was to merge into one bigger umbrella of progressives. They have a ticket for me, and their ideologies do not, in anyway, violate my principle. So, nothing is ruled out.
“I don’t necessarily need a title to do what I use to do, but, I want to see to the end of the whole APC process. My supporters should keep hope alive, we must rescue Delta.”