A kinsman of former President, Goodluck Jonathan, Chief Samuel Ogbuku from Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, has insisted that Jonathan was not a sectional leader as being claimed in certain quarters.
Speaking on Wednesday, the All Progressives Congress, APC, Chieftain maintained that Jonathan’s meritoriously served the nation as President.
Ogbuku, who is the Deputy Paramount Ruler of Ayakoro community in Ogbia Local Government Area, stressed that the blackmail of non-performance against Jonathan and the tag of being a sectional President was misleading and unacceptable.
The former Chief of Staff to ex-Bayelsa State Governor, Timipre Sylva was responding to a remark by a fellow kinsman, Richard Kpodoh, who asserted that people of the Niger Delta will massively vote Buhari for a second term in 2019 because the region never benefitted from Jonathan’s administration.
Kpodoh, in an open letter to the President, had claimed that Jonathan during his administration, shortchanged the people of the region in his six years in power by ‘selfishly’ empowering a few individuals from his Ogbia Local Government Area while sidelining people from other local councils.
He noted that Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, recent clampdown on those he described as, “Jonathan boys” in Bayelsa and other parts of the country have shown that the administration of the former President was the worst in the history of Nigeria.
But Ogbuku said the spurious claims by Kpodoh was aimed at setting the Ijaw nation against each other over the allegations that the former President favoured the people of Ogbia area more than others.
According to Ogbuku, “President Jonathan was a President to all Nigerians and not a president of Ogbia or Bayelsa State. He is a symbol of pride to the Ijaw people and the entire Nation. Could Kpodo have forgotten this early that President Jonathan got accolades for his feat in office both here in Nigeria and from the international community?,Ogbuku stated. He said the publication mischievously sought to portray the Ogbia people as the only beneficiaries of the Jonathan’s administration in the Niger Delta and supporting the warped argument with the few names of Ogbia sons currently going through an ordeal in the hands of anti-corruption agents.
“Firstly, I may not be a friend to those he mentioned, but I can’t remember any Court of law finding any of these Ogbia sons guilty since the law says an accused is innocent until he is found guilty.
“So, for now, nobody has the right to pass judgement on them. Moreso, some of the persons the author mentioned are not under any kind of investigation, so why blackmail successful and purpose-oriented businessmen like Dr. Eruani Azibapu.”
Ogbuku called on the people of Ogbia to resist any attempt to denigrate the former President because he remains a celebrated national and international leader.
“People are free to criticize, as long as it is done constructively and not in a manner that tends to demonise others. I wish to state that I have nothing personal against the author even if some people would want me to align with his submissions just because the people being attacked are members of the People’s Democratic Party.
“On this matter, politics should not be an excuse to peddle lies and baseless allegations against hardworking Ogbia leaders and entrepreneurs. As an Ogbia Chief, I cannot hide under partisanship to allow unscrupulous characters to needlessly insult our people and heritage. In a democracy, the author has the right to talk about any subject or criticise and express his views. What is not acceptable is deliberately portraying Ogbia in bad light,” he added.