The Urhobo Historical Society (UHS) has called on all Urhobo sons and daughters to consider the interest of Urhoboland and unite with a sense of common purpose to ensure the emergence of an Urhobo person as the Governor of Delta State in the 2023 Governorship election.
The UHS made the call in a communique issued on May 12, 2022, putting in perspective the recent endorsement of Olorogun David Edevbie by the Urhobo Progress Union as their preferred flag bearer of the Peoples Democratic Party. The communique was signed by its President, Dr Aruegodore Oyiborhoro, Vice President and Dr Isaac James Mowoe alongside the UHS Secretary and Treasurer.
Saying that it had restrained itself from commenting earlier before now in the hope that, with time, there would be reasoned argument and considered judgments, it pointed out that the unyielding reason for the UPU endorsement was not only to ensure the election of an Urhobo as the Governor of the State but also one that could best fulfill the duties of the office of Governor in the overall interest of all Deltans and urged the Urhobos to rally round the UPU rather than seek to disrepute it in the public space.
Noting that while different suggestions can be made about the process employed by the UPU in engaging the aspirants before deciding on Olorogun David Edevbie, the UHS said it shares in the objective of the endorsement by the UPU.
“We must allow our leaders (working hard and selflessly on our behalf) some room to act on what they reasonably consider to be in our collective best interest. Even when we disagree with a decision or the with the process which was used in arriving at that decision, we must never allow the ideal to be an enemy of the good,” the UHS appealed.
“Multiple avenues were available to it (UPU) as it sought to endorse the Urhobo candidate who, in its judgment, could best fulfill the duties of the office. The choice of which of these avenues to take and the process to employ was the Executive Committee’s to make. While UHS or any other group might well have chosen a different avenue and/or a different process, that mere fact, standing alone, does not make the choice of the UPU Executive in this instance suspect or invalid.
“If we, the people of Urhoboland, are to win the day in the many battles that await us, a firm sense of unity and common purpose, anchored on an abiding belief in reason as the most potent of our weapons, must be our guiding star. It is against this background that UHS has considered the substance of the communique issued by the Executive Committee of the UPU, on April 17, 2022, on the 2022 primary election of the PDP for the office of Governor of Delta State.
“All Urhobos must be careful and make certain that the man or woman who occupies that office at the conclusion of the electoral process is the Urhobo person best suited to faithfully discharge the duties of the office in genuine service of the citizens of the state.
“In our considered view, what remains now is for Urhobos, one and all, to come together, united in common purpose, and act deliberately and with calculation to protect our interests. A state of affairs in which contending personalities remain unmindful of the political realities and the dangers that we face as a people in the brutal political space that is the Republic of Nigeria, and in which they see politics in Urhoboland as war between and among enemies, will ill serve us.
In the circumstances, it is our considered view that if we as a people are to be protected, made safe and our future secured, we urgently need irenic men and women across Urhoboland who, with peace secured at home, can lead us in our struggles in the larger society where the real battle must be joined.”
The UHS also urged the UPU to implement the same process for Urhobo aspirants in other political parties as it promised to do.
“Our expectation is that the Executive Committee will fully implement this plan by repeating this exercise in other political parties in which a son or daughter of Urhoboland is a candidate.”