Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State at the Mega Rally of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Asaba on Saturday declared that the PDP is prepared to take over power in the country in 2023. He stated that the PDP is united and one family that promotes equity, justice, and liberty of all stakeholders.
Governor Okowa, therefore, assured that the primaries of the PDP for the 2023 general elections in Delta State will be free, fair, and transparent.
The PDP had organized a mega rally at the Cenotaph in Asaba on Saturday to demonstrate the strength of the party in the state.
Governor Okowa noting that PDP is one united family in Delta State, assured that the party leaders will continue to collaborate for the cohesion and victory of PDP in the state.
The governor emphasized that the massive turnout of supporters at the rally showed that “PDP is ready to rescue Nigeria from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC);” he cautioned other party aspirants not to waste their time and money in contesting elections in Delta State, noting that Delta is a PDP state.
Governor Okowa had declared: “I give thanks to God for what is happening here today and I thank our leaders in the PDP, our state and local government executives, our youths and women for the massive mobilisation for this rally.
“It is by the grace of God and through their hands that we have mobilised to make a statement today across Nigeria that PDP is prepared to take over this nation.
“One good thing about us in the PDP is that we are one family, we are not like the other people where one man takes it all. Here in PDP, we are one family.
“We work as a family with the love of God but in the other parties, they are always fighting themselves.”
The governor thanked the people of the state for the mandate given to the PDP to govern Delta State. He stated that the PDP has fulfilled that mandate by delivering the dividends of democracy across the state.
According to Okowa: “we have been doing a great job as Deltans, but it is because Deltans voted us into power and that is why we have the opportunity to do the great job that we are doing for our state.
“It is because you have always supported us that is why when we win, we win very well. We won well in 2015 and in 2019, and in 2023 we will finish work again.
“We are advising those who want to run in other political parties not to waste their time and money because there is no space for them in Delta”.
Governor Okowa also disclosed that his administration had expanded opportunities for youths in the state, adding that many youths have been appointed into various offices in the governance of the state, in addition to various empowerment schemes to grow the economy of the state.
According to the governor: “Never in the history of this state have youths been so empowered through our various empowerment and entrepreneurship programmes.
“We have done well for our women and we will continue to do more for them and let me make it clear that even as we play politics, we will continue to do the work that you asked us to do.”
The governor assured that his administration will sustain the development of infrastructure to the exit date, adding that more roads will be constructed. “Until I leave office in May, 2023, we will continue to build more and more roads and for those who haven’t been to Asaba in recent times, when you see our new State Secretariat, you will be proud that you are a Deltan.
“All our achievements are the collective efforts of all Deltans because you gave us the peace to work and we can’t thank you enough,” Okowa said.
The governor urged party leaders to discourage any act of violence, saying that PDP remains one big, united family, noting that there is no need for any fight in the party.
The governor said: “We are one family in PDP; we cannot fight and we will never fight; at the appropriate time, it will be well with us.
“But one thing I have always promised and I still promise today is that there will always be free and fair primaries; so, there is no room to fight.
“There is no room to quarrel, let us work together as one family that we are and ensure that PDP stays continuously as a family.”
Former Governor James Ibori at the mega rally commended Governor Okowa for his leadership in the state and the PDP. Ibori promised to continue supporting Okowa to excel beyond him, as governor of the state.
Ibori stated: “I thank you for the job you are doing in Delta and at the national level for the benefit of Nigerians.
“I most especially thank you for what I am seeing here today because you have done very well in Delta State and I can be more proud that you are our governor today.
“You are leading us very well and it is our duty, and we are all committed to say that you will finish very strong and at the end of the day we will all gather to thank God for you.
“From what I can see here, you have provided an atmosphere for a free and fair contest and you have provided an atmosphere for people’s aspirations to be heard without intimidation whatsoever.
“Of a truth, this was the philosophy behind the formation of this great party when I said in 1998 that democracy is about opening up the space and environment for everybody to aspire to whatever he or she believes in and I thank you for continuing with that vision.
“I want to thank you on behalf of teeming members of our party and pray that God will continue to guide you as you lead us in the years ahead.
Some “believe that your leadership will terminate at the end of your tenure as governor; I don’t believe that.
“I have come to say that you have earned your strides and your strides will continue to carry you on by the grace of God.
“On behalf of my one vote, my unit in Ogharefe, Ethiope West Local Government Area, I want to commit and dedicate myself to the service of PDP Delta State and Nigeria at large”.
PDP leaders at the mega rally included Deputy Governor Kingsley Otuaro who thanked the people for the support they have given to the administration to do what has been done, appealing for more support in the coming elections. Others are the Minority Leader in the House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu; Senator James Manager, who commended Okowa for his good work in the state and holding the PDP together; and former Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Stella Omu.
Several defectors from the All Progressives Congress (APC), including former APC State Chairman, Cyril Ogodo, were welcomed into the PDP at the mega rally.