The Urhobo Progressive Union (UPU), has said the body will ensure sustained friendly neighborliness between the Urhobos and other ethnic nationalities in the state, even after an Urhobo emerges governor of Delta State come 2023.
First Deputy President General of UPU, and Chairman, UPU committee on ‘Urhobo Governor for 2023’, Chief Dr. Anthony Onoharigho gave the assurance when the committee visited the Itsekiri Leaders of Thought in Warri, weekend, to seek their support for the course of an Urhobo governor in 2023.
Onoharigho, who was responding to an address by the Chairman of Itsekiri Leaders of Thought, Chief Edward Ekpoko, during the visit, emphasized that it was the turn of Delta Central to produce the next governor after Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, adding that the committee was not being sponsored by any governorship aspirant.
He disclosed that the committee was the brainchild of the UPU and comprised of some members of the UPU national executives and president-generals of the 24 Urhobo kingdoms.
Ekpoko had in his address, said “Zoning, if respected, is best for Delta State, as it will give every ethnic nationality, large or small, a sense of belonging.
‘We call on Deltans to sit down and agree on zoning and the character it will take.
“The UPU and indeed, the entire Urhobo Nation, should take the lead.”
Continuing, he added, “If an agreement is reached with all the ethnic nationalities on zoning, another matter will be the character of the candidate to fly the flag.
“In our opinion, the person must be a bridge-builder to other ethnic nationalities in the state, with a good track record of service.
“Even if Urhobo is to produce the governor, the candidate must be acceptable to the other ethnic nationalities.”
While calling for the continuous meeting of both groups, he noted that Urhobos were in Delta South just as Itsekiris were also in Delta Central, adding that the zoning system should therefore be reflected in the two senatorial districts.
“Let us remember that as Urhobos claim that they are part of Delta South by their presence in Warri, the Itsekiris are also part of Delta Central. They are in Uvwie, Udu, Ethiope East and West, Sapele and other local government areas of Delta Central,” he stated.