Thursday, 20 March 2014

Urhobo Nation: When majority becomes minority (2)

                        Some Urhobo traditional leaders
Nevertheless, the Urhobo nation has never been so divided like this in the history of its people. If the Urhobos were divided pre-independence and immediately after independence, the Urhobo nation would have been worst politically than what it is at the moment. In the days of yore, the leadership of the Urhobo Progress Union was intact, focused, articulated and also had direction. Those were the days of the founding fathers; Chief Mukoro Mowoe, Chief T.E.A. Salubi etc just to mention a few.
As big as the Western Region was at that time, Chief Mukoro Mowoe, with the support of the UPU was able to win election to represent the Warri Province in the Western House of Assembly. But if it were to be now, people like Olori Magege would have said that the Urhobo nation could not do it all alone.

Chief T.E.A. Salubi, President General of Urhobo Progress Union (UPU), while delivering his address titled: Dynamics of Union Membership to the 16th Session of the Annual General Council of the Urhobo Progress Union, held at Warri in 1965; that was two years after the creation of Midwest Region and the Urhobo Division was officially declared to have the largest population in Midwest Region, said “It has been officially accepted that our Division (Urhobo Division) has the largest population in the whole of the Midwest. The struggle now ahead is to ensure that we take the fullest possible advantage of our numerical strength in the distribution of social and other amenities in the region”. Is Olori Magege and other Urhobos reading this?

Chief T.E.A. Salubi knew the importance and strength of a large population and urged the Urhobo people to seize the advantage it provided so as to attract leadership positions and amenities to the region! At that time, the Urhobo nation was able to produce the Governor of Midwest Region in the person of late Chief Samuel Jereton Mariere, the Speaker of the Midwest Region in the person of late Chief P.K. Tabiowo while Chief T.E.A. Salubi was Minister for Establishments and Training. But if it were to be now, the likes of Olori Magege would have told his Urhobo nation that only Urhobo cannot occupy these positions simply because he wants to remain the Chairman of Delta State Waste Management Board! You can see how greed and selfishness is reducing the Urhobo nation to beggars and minority in Delta State.

The worry of most Urhobos is that the likes of Olori Magege are not fighting for the relevance of the Urhobo people in Patani Local Government Council of Delta State who have not been able to produce the chairman of the council or the Urhobo people in Ofoni Clan, who are full fledge indigenes of Bayelsa State but have not occupied any significant posts in the state except Mrs. Grace Ogbemudia who was appointed Special Assistant to the governor on Mobilization and Non-indigenes. Again, the activities of Olori Magege are worrisome in the sense that instead of Delta Northerners to fight for themselves, it is Olori Magege that is championing the crusade for a governor of Delta North extraction. This is indeed disheartening.

It is on record that when opposition meeting was held at Chief Ideh’s residence where late Senator Fred Brume had come to explain why Governor Uduaghan had breakfast visit to him, Olori Magege in that meeting openly insulted Senator Brume on why he did that. He asked late Senator Brume to say how much debt he was owing that Urhobo could not help him to pay, that made him to have breakfast with the governor. But today, Olori Magege who was once the greatest opponent of Governor Uduaghan has suddenly become his apostle and mouthpiece simply because he was appointed the Chairman of the Delta State Waste Management Board! This fact needs to be brought to the fore so the Urhobo nation will know the character Olori Magege is made of. Olori Magege who has suddenly become an apostle of equity should tell his Urhobo people what they have gained from the Uduaghan’s administration. Delta South Senatorial District where Governor Uduaghan hails has eight local government councils and produced the Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, 12 commissioners, commissioner for NDDC, Chief Judge of Delta State, and Chairman of DESOPADEC. But Delta Central Senatorial District which also has eight local government councils, half of the populations in the Warri South and Patani Local Government Areas, has only eight commissioners with chairman of only one board which is coincidentally chaired by Olori Magege himself. Where is the equity which Olori Magege is fighting for in the scenario painted above?

The likes of Olori Magege should be reminded that no “Urhobo at heart” who will be governor of Delta State that will benefit the Urhobos than a governor of Urhobo extraction. We all can see from the administration of Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan how his Delta South Senatorial District has the highest number of commissioners and other juicy appointments at the state and federal levels. Which Urhobo person is in the Federal Government at the moment? Thus, the Urhobos should be wary of Olori Magege’s call for equity in 2015 when at present inequity is starring him on the face. Olori Magege should correct the inequity against the Urhobos before campaigning for a governor of Delta North!

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