Okowa: A Governor In Waiting
THE resounding victory of Dr. Arthur Ifeanyi Okowa at the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship primary in Delta State clearly showed that he is a grassroots politician who knows how to go about what the people want.
From the time of f the defunct Grassroots Democratic Movement (GDM), where he was the state secretary, he became quite a towering figure as he moved from one stage to another.
He had a humble beginning as Chairman of Ika North East Council and moved on to be appointed as a Commissioner for Water Resources by then governor, Chief James Ibori, and later moved to the Ministry of Health.
After the 2011 elections, he was made chairman of the committee for the inauguration of Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan.
He later served as the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) before resigning to contest the Delta North senatorial seat and defeated his opponents with a wide margin.
To prove his grassroots credentials, Okowa overwhelmingly overran his opponents even though a re-run exercise was instigated three times by one of the aspirants.
Some of the opponents had bowed out gracefully while those who felt they had an axe to grind contested the primaries, where Okowa did not only emerge victorious for the third time, but also came out stronger.
It was then clearer to all and sundry that he was an unstoppable candidate for the Delta North seat. And in the election proper, he won convincingly and moved to Abuja.
At the senate, his pedigree was immediately identified, as he emerged as Chairman of its Committee on Health. During his senatorial stewardship, he distinguished himself as a great leader in any position he was called to serve.
It was, therefore, not a surprise that having declared interest in the governorship in Delta State, he would be unstoppable, given his antecedents and pedigree.
As a commissioner under Ibori and Uduaghan, he made his mark by reaching out to many, irrespective of clan or divide. He brought the dividends of democracy to many communities in the 25 Council of the state.
So, it was not difficult for Deltans to remember the good works of such a man when the need for reward was required.
Deltans are very highly educated and knowledgeable people who know what they want and would stop at nothing to openly show it, as they came out solidly to vote for Okowa, whom they had always known to do as he says and fulfill whatever he promised the people.
His popularity grew by length and strength, because he never promised without fulfilling such promises.
He was given the chieftaincy title as Ekwueme of Ika Land (meaning a man who does what he says).
Now that the primaries are over and the storm is settled, a new phase has begun. Okowa has started well by choosing Mr. Kingsley Otuaro, a lawyer, as his running mate. His choice of Otuaro, an Ijaw from Delta South, is a perfect one, given the political equation in the state.
It will be noted that since the creation of the state in 1991, the Anioma people of Delta North and the Ijaw have never occupied the exalted seat.
That is why for the sake of justice and equity, Deltans should vote overwhelmingly for the duo and continue with the trend of being brothers and sisters, which has been the bedrock of peace and tranquility in the state.
Let us show the progenitors of fanatism and ethnic domination who want to fan the embers of disorder and disunity that the whole world has come to associate Deltans with peace and maturity since the creation of the state.
– Iduwe wrote from Lagos