By Aghogho Oletu
Until his demise, Rt. Hon. Tim Owhefere was a fourth term Delta State House of Assembly lawmaker and represented Isoko North constituency between (2007-2021).
As a state lawmaker, he was a principal officer from his first term to last day as Chief Whip and Majority leader respectively. He also chaired several committees during these four tenures and was the Chairman of the House Committee on Information.
At home, he was a political figure. He became so powerful and was literally the “Prime Minister” of the Hon. Leo Ogor’s political bloc. He wielded so much power, such that, in agreement with Ogor, the pendulum swung whithersoever they listed with little resistance.
Although, they had to walk through a tight rope in getting their candidate nominated for the Chairmanship race by the People’s Democratic Party in Isoko North in the Local Government Election slated for March 6, 2023, due to the fierce resistance and run for their ride offered by a relatively new bloc comprising of young and enterprising Isoko sons and daughters; who represent the face and feelings of the younger generation, Rt. Hon. Tim Owhefere was pivotal and instrumental in the triumph of their camp.
Expectedly, in the cause of discharging the responsibilities assigned to him by his camp in Isoko North, he relied hugely on some lieutenants including the party’s local government chairman, Mr Godwin Ogorugba, for execution. His shoulders were readily available for them to ride on so long as it favoured their political family. He trusted, defended and projected them politically.
In a rather unfortunate circumstance, TKO, as fondly called by his associates, transcended mother earth to the world beyond. Of course, the inevitability of death is undeniable, many would have wished he lived longer for various reasons – political, relationship or otherwise. He allegedly died of the novel coronavirus (COVID 19) at the Federal Medical Center, Asaba. Sad indeed!.
Interestingly, these lieutenants of his were the first to sound the whistle for his replacement race. Without the least regard for the sanctity of his death, and under curious and inauspicious circumstances, they have opened the floodgate of political lobby and manoeuvres for the replacement of their hitherto revered political “deity” when the whole of Isoko nation including those who differed in political stance with him are still in mourning.
Obviously, their loyalty was feigned, which is no surprise at all. However, one would have thought they would pretend a bit by curtailing their uncircumcised taste for political power until after he is formally laid to rest. Characteristics of Godwin Ogorugba, selfishness must be exalted above reasoning even at the detriment of the party. Little wonder he has torn the party apart with his toxic and wicked quest for control. Though we hate to mention, late Owhefere was sufficiently warned about Ogorugba’s treachery but he chose to believe otherwise.
In the pursuit of their greedy and wicked agenda, they have begun to persuade Rt. Hon. Leo Ogor, another frail and fragile Isoko son, who ordinarily should be shielded from the rigours of politics as we anticipate his recovery. Instead of allowing Ogor to look after his health, the pressure from Ogorugba and his cohorts are becoming unbearable to him, which he has complained to close relatives.
We believe he was needlessly dragged into the local council tussle which aggravated his health challenges and should be allowed to rest so that the younger generation can benefit from his experience and contacts. No, Ogorugba and his co-travellers must use any means possible to achieve their diabolic plans while damning every consequence, including manipulating Ogor to queue behind their chosen candidate as a replacement for Tim, whom they had claimed to love so much but could hardly wait for a day after his death to start lobbying.
More worrisome is their inordinate appetite for recycling tired and weak politicians who are unequivocally bereft of progressive ideas for the people. They lack the aura, mental acumen, courage and zeal to pursue and attract development to the Isoko nation as they can hardly point to anything meaningful they have achieved with the many opportunities given to them by the Isoko people, save for their gifts of motorcycle, sewing machines, dryers and tricycles to young and able-bodied Isoko graduates while their children live in luxury with our common patrimony.
We are confident that the people of Isoko North will utterly reject them this time. Their machinations will come to nought and the people will triumph in victory.