Why Itsekiri Group Chose Buhari Over Jonathan

The Itsekiri Consolidated Movement (ICM), in Warri, Delta State, has given mouth watery reasons why their kinsmen would rather vote for the All Progressive Congress (APC) presidential candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari instead of incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan.

The Itsekiri pressure group made the revelation following intense lobby of support for President Jonathan by Chief Government Ekpemupolo (aka Tompolo), The Nation reports.

Speaking on Wednesday evening at a press conference in Ubeji-Warri, Ortisegbegbemi Besidone and Franklin Metsese, Chairman and Public Relations Officers respectively, said the domineering influence of Tompolo and other Ijaws in the state showed that their interests would be better served in the APC.

The group leaders stated that the peace move by Tompolo and other agents of President Jonathan would no longer influence the Itsekiri people because of the apparent tribal politics of the President and his kinsmen.

“In as much as we believe Tompolo has the constitutional right to campaign for President Goodluck Jonathan and Senator Ifeanyi Okowa/Kingsley Otuaro, his cousin, we want to assure Tompolo that his voyage is set to hit the rock, particularly on Jonathan’s re-election bid, unless he puts the following politically damaging records straight.

“Why did Tompolo lead the killing of hundreds of Itsekiris during the Warri crisis and forcefully took over Itsekiri God-given communities without any remorse or apology till date? Without prejudice to party or personality of Itsekiri candidate (s) for Warri South-West Chairmanship in the October 25, 2014 local government poll, why did Tompolo with the backing of the Presidency threaten and hoodwink Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan into handing the Chairmanship of Warri South-West to his sibling, Hon. George Ekpemupolo 48 hours to the election against the gentleman agreement of single tenure rotation between Ijaw and Itsekiri in the local government?

“Tompolo has to explain why he and his Gbaramatu brothers are laying claim to lands belonging to Itsekiri (Omadino and Ugborodo Communities) particularly the area where the EPZ is situated and till date, despite claiming not to be waging war against Itsekiri.

“Tompolo is yet to tender apology to the 14 abducted journalists, including a Channels TV camera man, Itsekiri born Senior Correspondent of Daily Independent Newspaper, Mr. Emma Arubi and six Ugborodo indigenes, who were humiliated as well as tortured almost to the point of death by his militants on his order on their way from Escravos, where they went to perform their legitimate duty of letting the world know the Itsekiri’s angle of the true owner of the land hosting the EPZ,” the group said.

However, since the Itsekiri group has decided to leave President Jonathan, who is a fellow southerner and give its support to the opposition candidate, Buhari, a northerner, one can easily express optimism that Nigerians are beginning to shun tribal politics and embrace true democracy.

This reaction from the Itsekiri group is not so amazing as it was earlier reported that the structure of the PDP in Delta state is now under the control of former Militant leader, Tompolo.

The President might still enjoy the support of other group as it would be recalled that a former leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, ‘Gen’ Reuben Wilson, recently denied the endorsement of the presidential candidate of the APC, Buhari for February election.
Also, the ex-militants of the Niger Delta region had promised to do everything to ensure that President Jonathan completes his second term in 2019.

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