The Urhobo Progress Union (UPU), a socio-cultural group says it is adopting Olorogun David Edevbie, a former Chief of Staff to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, as its consensus candidate for the governorship primaries of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Delta State.
The group made it’s adoption choice known in a statement as follows:
GOVERNORSHIP OF DELTA STATE 2023!!!
OUR STAND; OUR CHOICE
On behalf of the National Executive Council (NEC) of the Urhobo Progress Union (UPU), worldwide, we send warm and sincere fraternal greetings to our beloved Urhobo people on this special occasion of Easter celebration. In this season of love and festivity, we wish our people unlimited joy, peace and good health.
While we celebrate, it is important for us to take note of the current political atmosphere in the State and the seeming undercurrent to deliberately undermine the interest of the Urhobo people in the 2023 Governorship race. In this regard, we wish to categorically state, as follows:
1. That as the Government of the Urhobo Nation, the UPU is under obligation, at all times and in all circumstances, to defend, protect and promote the interest of the Urhobo Nation and her people.
2. That the UPU is unequivocally committed to the emergence of an Urhobo as Governor of Delta State in 2023.
3. That the UPU has absolute faith in the rotation of the Governorship position among the three Senatorial Districts of the State, which, of course, has gone round, having started with Central in 1999 and rounding up now with the North. This rotational policy has brought about peace, mutual respect among the diverse ethnic groups and transquility to the State in the last 22 years, paving way for the growth and development, that have been witnessed so far in the State. The policy must, therefore, be encouraged and sustained by all the ethnic nationalities in the State to guarantee the prevailing peace, and prevent the unnecessary rancour, acrimony and violence often associated with campaigns and elections.
4. That the UPU commends all our Royal Fathers across the State and all well-meaning Deltans who have given their support to the rotational policy on Senatorial basis.
5. That to present a united front in the forthcoming primaries of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the UPU had a brain-storming session with each of the Urhobo aspirants. All the aspirants who presented themselves before the UPU in the four-day interactive session, performed brilliantly.
6. That we hereby acknowledge that they are all eminently qualified and suitable for the job, and each has what it takes to occupy the office of the Governor.
7. We wish to commend all the Urhobo aspirants in the PDP for the matured and peaceful conduct of their campaigns, mainly refraining from name-calling and campaigns of calumny.
8. We wish to recall admonishing each of the aspirants in the cause of our meeting with them that, “the UPU will, in conjunction with all stakeholders, ensure that the Urhobo Nation produces the Governor in 2023. We shall be firm on this and do whatever it takes, for an Urhobo man to occupy Osadebey House, Asaba, in 2023. Be also assured that we shall be fair and just to all the aspirants because we know that you all are eminently qualified for the office. *It is just that only one person can go per time.”*
9. That after thoroughly examining and analysing all the aspirants, we have, however, reached a consensus that *Olorogun David Edevbie, is the best person for the job at this time.* Over time, he has acquired impressive public sector experience, both locally in Delta State and Federal Government, and prior outstanding international development finance experience.
10. That we hereby plead with all our sons, and prevail on them all to support and collaborate with *the consensus choice of UPU Worldwide, for the collective interest of our dear Urhobo Nation. We ask for their understanding at this critical and trying time in the history of the Urhobo Nation.*
11. That the UPU will also interact with all Urhobo aspirants in the All Progressive Congress (APC); Social Democratic Party (SDP); Labour Party (LP) or any of the other parties, with a view to fielding the most suitable for the primaries in those parties.
12. We want to appeal to our Governor, His Excellency, Sen. Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, to forgive Olorogun David Edevbie for any perceived transgression. To forgive is divine. No individual is perfect.
Your Excellency, we also urge you to kindly allow the *Urhobo Nation to choose the candidate of their preference, please.* We can assure Your Excellency, that if considered necessary, we, as Urhobos, will act as sureties of Olorogun David Edevbie while in the office, if by the grace of God, he wins the Governorship general elections in 2023.
13. Finally, we sincerely and wholeheartedly thank all the Urhobo Governorship aspirants for their patriotism in putting the interest of the Urhobo Nation above their personal interests and ambition.
14. *Urhobooo, Ovuovo!*
1. Olorogun (Dr.) Moses Oghenerume Taiga,
President-Genaral, UPU Worldwide
2. Chief Capt. (Dr.) Anthony Onoharigho,
Ist Deputy President-General, UPU Worldwide
3. Chief Godwin Notoma,
Chairman, Forum of Presidents-General of the 24 Urhobo Kingdoms
4. Dame Chief (Mrs.) Christy Siakpere, President, UPU Women Wing
5. Comrade Ovie Ebireri,
President, UPU Youth Wing