Ahead of the forthcoming general elections, WARRI TODAY examines some of the key factors major political gladiators will use to edge out their rivals particularly in the Niger Delta region. WARRI TODAY will examine the factors on two fronts –from both candidates angle – to enable readers be the final judge.
After careful review, WARRI TODAY presents EIGHT reasons Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State will defeat his arch-rival and candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief Great Ogboru.
As a follow up, this medium will also reeling out EIGHT reasons Ogboru will defeat Okowa in spite of incumbency factor. It will be published in a later date. Happy Reading and kindly drop your comments.
ONE: Incumbency Factor:
As a tradition, no sitting governor has lost a second term ambition in Delta state since James Ibori rose to power the nation’s nascent democracy. Incumbency has proven a strong force in Delta guber elections. It is likely to help Okowa this time around.
TWO: Ibori factor –
Against perceived disintegration following his long absence in over half a decade “sabbatical”, as he termed his tenancy in a UK jail cell, the Ibori political family dynasty remains a critical force in determining who becomes Governor in Delta state. Even the porting from the Ibori clan to APC by Uduaghan has dealt little damage to this dictatorial political family. With Odidigboigbo’s pledge of full support to Okowa’s second term bid, it’s a crucial boost to Okowa.
THREE: Tacit Zoning Formula Favours Delta Northerner –
Working by the unwritten agreement established by the ruling PDP to zone the governorship among the three senatorial zones across Delta, Okowa could win majority sympathy votes from even among non supportive electorates, particularly in his Delta North roots.
A Delta North APC bigwig said “no Delta APC voter is ready to vote against us enjoying a second tenure as Central and South enjoyed during their turns. This factor informs why Olorogun O’tega Emerhor strongly canvassed a Delta North APC candidate to run against Okowa, but too bad the counsel fell into deaf ears.
FOUR: Heavier wallet:
Ogboru is known to be a miser said to always depend on the support from the wallets from associates to finance his campaigns. He’s said to be so tightfisted when it comes to throwing his personal income into funding campaigns.
Against an incumbent Okowa who has enjoyed the wealth associated with holding public offices over the years, and knowing the power of money in campaigns, Okowa is likely to have more money to beat the competition. Aside his personal wealth, other officeholders, including the bloated community of Okowa’s aides who have all been challenged to win their respective ward or lose relevance, more money will flow in Okowa’s campaign and election camps than Ogboru.
FIVE: Road-Master Packaging –
To honest minds, it is strange that Okowa who has markedly underperformed in first tenure achievements, compared to Ibori and his successor, Uduaghan, now wear the garb of the “Road Master” by partisan bell ringers. With some of his road projects well packaged by the retinue of propagandists marketing his campaigns, Okowa has achievements to refer against arch rival, Ogboru who has only promises to make.
SIX: Ogboru’s rancourous primary’s victory-
The rancour that greeted the Delta APC congresses and Ogboru’s emergence as standard bearer significantly aggravated absence of cohesion in the party. While many highly aggrieved members defected to the PDP and other parties, some able to hold back have turned moles to work against the party interests. Going to the elections as a divided house could prove consequential and become Okowa’s gain.
SEVEN: Ogboru’s dwindling popularity-
But for the confidence booster Uduaghan has proven to be and the hope of leaning on federal might, Ogboru as serial loser does not have same cult hero image he commanded in previous outing.
“Let’s try another person. He always lose to run away”, many had chorused in the struggles that defined the APC primaries. Many still believe he didn’t earn a convincing primaries victory, but was rather rigged in. It is also left to be imagined his legion of predominantly unregistered ” okada” supporters would cast votes that would count in March 2nd.
Eight: Poor APC visibility in Riverine Ijaw –
With political neophytes like Chief Michael Johnny gaining prominence as APC leader in Riverine Ijaw against incumbent Deputy Governor Otuaro and PDP council chairmen holding sway in all Ijaw localities, the miracle votes which have proven deciders in edging Ogboru in previous governorship races are likely to go PDP way again.