Take a Trip to the Three Warri LGAs

by Eferovo Igho

The recent Delta State rerun elections and the so-called results it spewed represent the most desperate, absurd and nauseous outing undertaken in politics in recent times. Knowing they were in for complete whitewash, the Ibori boys exercised themselves in what they know best: Crudity. If there is anything unexplainable, this is it. So paranormal you can only live it to Attahiru Jega and Emmanuel Uduaghan, the key conjure men, to explain! And that is what we expect them to do in court. The onus is theirs to explain magic in mortal tongues and to mortal men. And they, of course, may have huge dose of parascience to do that, a discipline alien to Nigerian jurisprudence, and any jurisprudence for that matter.

Whether this was collaborative outing between Jega and Uduaghan is not too clear. And how much hitch up there was between them is not clear either. The court may well find that out. But the facts on ground may want to suggest something obvious. Or at the least Jega’s role is ostensible, and Uduaghan’s undisputable and plain as the nose on your face. As the case unfolds, who-is-who in this brazen and barefaced democratic silliness will come to fore. I tell you, many hands will stick akimbo for along time: When the masquerade/s is or are undressed!

In seven local government areas the election results were something else. Great Ogboru, evidently the sweeping winner of the rerun election, wanted some dead consciences come alive when he, in his congratulatory message to Deltans, said inter alia: “By the result declared, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has told us that under same circumstances, Seven (7) Local Government Areas (LGAs) with just 30% voting capacity could produce better election results than 18 LGAs with 70% total voting strength! Even riverine areas acknowledged by our opponents as “sparsely populated” by virtue of authentic National Population Commission (NPC) statistics, produced more votes than all our major cities combined”.

It is already indisputable that Jega, and not Maurice Iwu, conducted the rerun elections in Delta recently. But what is disputable is whether Jega really knows Delta State. He said Uduaghan, who himself just feigned poor knowledge of the state with his voodoo figures from several local government areas and more especially from the Warri riverine axis, ‘won’ the rerun. Uhmm! And so, let’s now narrow this work to the three Warri council areas where the abracadabra touched Everest.

Uduaghan went to his vastly un-peopled region of Koko and Benin River and came with figures as if he got them from Oshodi. You only need to take a trip to Warri North with headquarters at Koko to see the gross falsity and total spuriousness of those figures. You should hear this: You can stay at Koko and be able to know virtually everybody, minus the invalids, within a year. And this is even truer with any other place in the three Warri council areas apart from Warri town which methinks may be more populated than the rest of the three council areas properly put together.

Delta State has several local government areas that are essentially or completely riverine and sparsely populated with difficult terrain, and tedious and very expensive to travel in or traverse. Doting the region are fishing settlements, hamlets and villages. Koko and Ogbe-Ijoh, headquarters of Warri North and Warri South West respectively, are villages by Delta standard and by any standard for that matter. Add to them Ogidigben, Ogheye, Tsekelewu and you are almost done with the list of near sizable villages in those two local government areas. Again, you only need to take a trip there. The very sparse population in the riverine totally belies the results Jega gave us from there.

Then the terrain! Voting is not an easy task there. Movement is a huge problem, and it cost a fortune. It may well be more expensive getting from one local government end to the other end of it than getting from Warri to Kaduna. Only ghost voters can give Uduaghan the figures he needed from those places. Warri North where Uduaghan hails from is arguably the list populated local government area of Delta State. But in Jega’s INEC rerun ‘results’, Warri North joined the other two Warri local governments at the top three positions in Delta State. Some years ago, it was rumored that trees and, or cows voted in Northern Nigeria. May be fishes did in Warri North in this Delta rerun.

So remote is the riverine part of the Niger Delta that yours sincerely have done dozens of widely published articles to canvass the opening up of the region by the federal government to help the place tap into civilization. But little did I know that ghost-humans who are even more politically alive than visible humans in any other place in the country abound that whole region.

Then go to Warri South West. It is arguably one of the three least populated council areas in Delta. It may be marginally more populated than Warri North. But by the rerun election ‘results’, Jega’s INEC tacked it with the other two Warri council areas to lead other council areas most of which have several cities/urban areas, and numerous chief villages you may compromisingly refer to as cities if they were in the riverine; these are villages more populated than any place in the riverine. It should be noted that the Warri South West council area stars men who have ably aided and abetted Ibori and Uduaghan in their naked plunge into our commonwealth. They know that the fall of Uduaghan is their fall and peril. Invoking figures was part of the desperation to help them keep away from the arm of the law. They, with Uduaghan, alone can explain those figures they summoned from nothingness. The rating of Ogboru among the Ijaws of that council area (which probably constitute about 65 percent of that local government population) hits the sky. Go to Oporoza, Okerenkoko, Ogbe-Ijoh and other villages there to find that out.

Then take a trip lastly to Warri South local government area with headquarters in Warri. Warri town actually holds about 85percent of the population in this local government area. Try to sample views or take an opinion poll. If in every 1000 people sampled across the breadth and length of the town you get less than 900 average supports for Ogboru then give the rerun election to Uduaghan. That is an assignment for anybody including INEC! It may well be an assignment for the judiciary as well. You may call it novel. It is appreciatively novel, I dare say.

The voodoo results, which are what the three Warri constituencies rerun election results are, will lead the conjure men nowhere. It is a fool’s errand ending in a fool’s paradise. That is what it gives. It cannot be otherwise. By the time evidence are finally given in court this can only be the result. And just as we said elsewhere: the ides of March may have come but not yet gone. At the end of the day those voodoo results would have properly become what they truly are: magical.

Not that we do not know that Uduaghan cannot take this voodoo trip to hold on to un-mandated power especially when that is the only way to continue the odyssey of rubbish that the Ibori-Uduaghan siege represent. The James Ibori camp which Uduaghan now leads is carved for such trips. That is the only thing, the only place where the members of that clique excel.

We are only troubled that Jega can be railroaded into this. Jega has allowed this rubbish called election rerun and the so-called results it threw up to further deface the face of politics in Delta. But then, it is a good thing in disguise because by the time the court is through with Ogboru’s case Jega would know how to face the many area boys defacing the polity and will be better prepared for April 2011.

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