Anxiety In Delta State As Ibori Endorses APC Senatorial Candidate
Former governor of Delta State, Chief James Ibori, has has thrown his weight behind the ambition of Hon Joel Onowakpo-Thomas, the Delta South Senatorial Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 general election.
Ibori stated this on Wednesday when senatorial candidate visited him in his country home in Oghara, Ethiope West Local Government Area, as part of his campaign and consultations to realize his dream of succeeding Senator James Manager in the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly via next month’s election.
Onowakpo-Thomas is a man of immense and undeniable capabilities that can deliver the desired democratic representation towards the transformation of the state and Delta South in particular, the former governor said.
Describing him as intelligent and humble despite his towering personality and remarkable professional track-record, Ibori prayed that God will grant him his heart’s desire to represent the people of Delta South in the Senate.
The action of Ibori, a chieftain and two-term governor under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has heightened growing disquiet among members of the party in the state, which has witnessed several resignations of prominent members of the party especially in Delta Central and Delta South senatorial districts of the state.
Although, the party has also been receiving members defecting from the APC and other patties, many prominent PDP members announcing the resignation are believed to be strong Ibori loyalists.
Photos of Onowakpo-Thomas, the former chairman of state board of internal revenue (DBIR), adorned in the APC campaign colours and kneeling to receive blessings and support from Ibori went viral on Thursday, fuelling speculations that the reputed political godfather of the PDP in Delta State might be either going to act the spoiling game in the coming election or on his way out of the party for good.
Although, Chief Ibori, whose daughter, Mrs Erhiatake Ibori-Soenu, is the PDP House of Representatives Candidate for Ethiope Federal Constituency, hails from Delta Central senatorial district, the APC Delta South senatorial candidate, Onowakpo-Thomas, said that he wished to pay homage, get his prayers for his ambition to represent his zone under the APC canopy.
He also said that he wished to tap from the enormous political experience and influence of the former governor.
“Your Excellency, I am here today to officially announce to you that I am contesting for the position of Delta South Senatorial District under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to represent my people in the red chambers.
“Not only that, I have also come for your prayers and support. It remains an undeniable fact that you remain one of the foremost leaders we have in Delta State, Niger-Delta and Nigeria at large. As I embark on this journey, I solicit your support and those of your numerous followers in Delta South Senatorial District as this will go a long way in my envisaged victory come February 25, 2023”, Onowakpo-Thomas said.
The APC flag-bearer is up against a major challenge from the PDP whose senatorial candidate in the district is Michael Diden, a.k.a. Ejele, who is also a close political ally of the PDP Vice-Presidential Candidate and Delta State Governor, Dr feanyi Okowa.