he imposition of candidates for local election in Isoko South Local Government Area of Delta State is brewing trouble in the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the area as an ally of governor Ifeanyi Okowa is alleged to be responsible for the current misgiving in the party ahead of the local government elections next March.
SaharaReporters learned that rather than organising party primaries for all aspirants in line with the party’s guidelines, Okowa’s ally, Ross Uredi, allegedly bypassed the ward leaders of Irri ward 11B and other wards in the council area and singlehandedly compiled a list containing his cronies as the party’s councillorship candidates.
Members of the party in the local government accused the governor of playing politics of selection by imposing unpopular chairmanship candidate, Victor Asasa, on the people.
They also accused the governor’s ally and former House of Assembly member representing Isoko South constituency 1 of always creating problems and hijacking all processes of primaries in the party.
Speaking to our correspondent over the development, an executive member of the party in the local government, who pleaded anonymity, said that Uredi, who hails from Idheze and leader of Irri ward 11A, allegedly went to hijack processes of primaries at the Irri ward 11B due to his closeness to the governor.
He added that for selfish interest, Okowa also forced an unpopular chairmanship candidate on the people of Isoko South.
“Ross has no such rights to leave his ward and go to another ward, not even the Irri ward 11B to manipulate the process of primaries and single-handedly compiled list full of his boys. As we talk, there is a crisis across the wards because of his interference, hijacking and manipulation of the whole process. Uredi failed woefully while representing the people of Isoko South constituency 1 in the state assembly in 2003. He should bury himself in perpetual shame.
“Okowa has succeeded to force an unpopular chairmanship candidate, Victor Asasa, on us, and Uredi, on the other hand, is boasting that the governor has given him the privilege to select councilorship candidates and nobody can question him.
Uredi is on this undemocratic voyage to plant one of his boys called Bino in the state’s house of assembly come 2023, and he will be disappointed when the time comes. Ross should go and face his supply of vehicles to all government officials, a contract the governor always awarded him since 2015 till date.
“We are calling on governor Okowa and the state party chairman, Kingsley Esiso to caution Ross. If the governor and the state party chairman should allow Ross to hijack the whole process in mere council elections, then they should be ready for us come 2023. Ross, is a capitalist, and doesn’t contribute a dime in these other wards so why the interference?”
Meanwhile, the Ikpide-Irri community in Isoko South whose turn is to produce the next councillor under the Irri ward 11B, has accused Ross Uredi of conspiring with an indigene, his brother-in-law and owner of Portplus limited to impose one Humphrey who is not a member of the party and has no PVC card.
The community warned Uredi to drop what they described as “undemocratic idea of imposing an unpopular candidate on the people before it’s too late.”
Our correspondent gathered that one of the party’s leaders in the area and managing director of Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (DESOPADEC), Askia Ogieh, was said to be at loggerheads with Uredi following the way he was going about the imposition of candidates.
Phone calls to Uredi for comment were not answered, but one of his aides who spoke on the condition of anonymity said all the allegations were false, adding that “In any case, my boss, because of his closeness to the governor must be given some level of privileges in the party and should be allowed to do what he knows is best for the party.”