How Uduaghan Bribed Oghara Youths With N30M On Jonathan's Visit
ASABA, June 24, (THEWILL) - Facts have emerged on how Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State doled out a whooping sum of N30 Million to Oghara youths in Ethiope West local government area, Delta state to shelve their earlier threat to stage a mass protest on President Goodluck Jonathan's one day working visit to the state to commission two projects.
The angry youths had threatened to battle the visiting number one citizen of Nigeria, during his visit to the home town of embattled former governor of the state, Chief James Ibori on Saturday 19, 2010 following Chief Ibori's current predicament in the hands of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Metropolitan Police Service, but governor Uduaghan in a swift response having gotten wind of the youths' plan called for a round table discussion with them.ã€€
It would be recalled that the Oghara youths armed with dangerous weapons had sometime ago confronted officials of EFCC and other security agencies who had gone to Oghara to effect the arrest of Chief Ibori which almost turned into a bloody clash.
According to our government house sources, in a bid to forestall any embarrassment and break down of law and order during the President’s visit, Governor Uduaghan allegedly offered the Oghara youths the sum of N30 Million as settlement fees to calm them down.
THEWILL had observed that few days to the visit of President Jonathan, some of the Oghara youths were sighted in Government House, Asaba and a close source who confided in us affirmed that the youths presence was not unconnected to Uduaghan's settlement for them in order to call off their planned protest.
The state government had before the visit assured Deltans and visiting guests of tight security for the one day working visit of Mr. President to the state to commission twoã€€landmark projects, the Delta State University Teaching Hospital and the Nigerianã€€Naval Logistics Command Headquartersã€€initiated by the embattled former governor.
At a Press briefing at the Government House Press Centre on Tuesday, 15 June, 2010, Chairman Planning Committee of the Presidential Visit and Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa disclosed that adequate arrangements for security had been made and government was already aware of the protest.
Also as a way to appease Oghara town, Oghara monarch HRH Oreki 11 pressurized the state government to include him in the programme so that he could cash-in on the rare opportunity to host the visiting President in his palace.
This, the SSG confirmed when he said the monarch had sent a delegation seeking to be included in the programme to host the president in his palace at Oghara.
As at the time of filing in this report, the Chairman, Planning Committee of the Presidential Visit and Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa could not be reached, as his cell phone was not available when calls were put across to him.
THEWILL authoritatively learnt that Governor Uduaghan, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Yakubu Alkali; the State Director of the State Security Service, Mr. Taminu Adalkhali; and other top officials of the state government and security agencies had visited Oghara on Wednesday, June 16, 2010, to appraise the situation in the community ahead of the President’s visit on Saturday, June 19, 2010.ã€€
Heads of security agencies in the state, including the Joint Task Force code named "Operation Restore Hope" were said to have been engaged in various meetings to perfect strategies for a hitch-free presidential visit.
It was gathered that the weekly meeting of the State Security Council on Wednesday deliberated extensively on the planned visit and devised measures to curtail any breach.