The National Publicity Secretary of the Urhobo Progress Union (UPU), Mr. Abel Oshevire, has berated former First Deputy President-General of the union, Chief Okotie Osiobe, for allegedly describing the UPU as an arm of the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Delta State.
Oshevire, who noted that Osiobe’s alleged criticism portended betrayal of trust, said Osiobe’s comments might have been borne out of ignorance, as UPU hitherto remains a socio-cultural group without bias to any political party even though it encourages sons and daughters of the Urhobo to belong to any party of their choice.
Besides, the UPU national publicity secretary, who spoke with journalists in Asaba yesterday, said that the entire Urhobo nation was prepared to grant pardon to former President-General of UPU, Chief Joe Omene, and others if he was prepared to humble himself and apologise to Urhobo monarchs.
He said: “As a former president-general of UPU, Omene deserves our respects, but he must apologise for his alleged misdeeds so that he can be reintegrated into the fold to play that fatherly role which is expected of him.”
He dispelled as untrue that UPU was divided as speculated in many quarters, saying that rather it had remained one indivisible entity led by Olorogun Moses Taiga.
Oshevire, who condemned Osiobe’s lamentation that no invitation was extended to APC chieftains during the UPU Day, said: “It is not true as alleged that no invitation was extended to APC chieftains. Osiobe was speaking out of ignorance because I am aware that from the fact that invitations were sent to notable Urhobo sons and daughters, Olorogun Taiga equally sent SMS to distinguished Urhobo politicians, including Senator Omo-Agege, Chiefs Emerhor, Great Ogboru and Osiobe. It was only Emerhor that responded by sending a representative because he was marking his 60th birthday that day.”
He, however, said that UPU regretted that invitations went late but the president-general had tendered apologies for that during the opening ceremony, and appealed to the people of Urhobo to remain steadfast and be united, as it was the only way the Urhobo collective destiny could be achieved.
Meanwhile, Chief Osiobe Okotie, governorship hopeful under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has vowed that he was seeking support of Deltans to win governorship seat of Delta State come 2019.
Okotie, who spoke with journalists in Obiaruku, Ukwuani Local Government Area on Tuesday during a consultative meeting with elders of the party, said he did not come to campaign, but that they should support him so that he can chase the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) out of the state in 2019.
But in a swift reaction, Chief Press Secretary to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, Mr. Charles Aniagwu, said there is no APC in Delta State.”