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Democracy dividends: Trouble averted in Elele... As tension mounts in the community

Posted by The Port Harcourt Telegraph on 2005/01/24 | Views: 268 |

Democracy dividends: Trouble averted in Elele... As tension mounts in the community


Differences over how patronage accruing from what many here describe as dividends of democracy is causing tension at Elele in the Ikwerre Local Government Area.

Differences over how patronage accruing from what many here describe as dividends of democracy is causing tension at Elele in the Ikwerre Local Government Area.

Last week, what could have led to violence was averted.

The problem that is tearing allies at Elele assunder may not be unconnected with how the community's quota of the State government's poverty and youth rehabilitation scheme was distributed.

Opponents of a high ranking party member who rose to head an agricultural company owned by the state allege he has rather used the quota meant for the community to satisfy his cronies and non-party members.

Trouble began brewing two months ago when PDP members who were affected by the April 12 Governorship Election violence angry over the official's parade as the political godfather of the party in the community petitioned to the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly complaining of what they said was their neglect.

Their complaint led to the intervention of Mr. Speaker who visited the place and did his best to get the Elele political elite to work together.

Opponents of the political appointee say the speaker's wise counsel has not helped neither has the intervention of the party executive in the LGA been able to prevail on the godfather from carrying out his alleged threat to deal with those he said had been disloyal.

Local sources hint that the latest crisis that could have snow-balled into a break down of law and order over the weekend came in the wake of the publication of names of committee members for the Ikwerre Local Government.

According to what was alleged, the federal appointee had single-handedly substituted names submitted by the councilor allegedly representing Elele Ward Four with names of non PDP members and his cronies.

Our sources further reveal that an emergency meeting held at the residence of the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, Chief Mike Elechi helped to avert doom.

Interestingly, that meeting was attended by elders and chiefs of the community who later resolved to visit the chairman of the council, Chief Kierran Wobodo to discuss the matter.

As part of the resolution taken, a peace committee was set up to help ensure that there is a unity of purpose amongst political office holders in Elele.
Members of the committee include Chief A.A. Waga, Chiefs P.N. Ori, E.O. Okah, Dr C.O. Alikor (JP) and Aaron Ogba.

Others are J.A. Ofuru, H.A. Arloe, P.W. Waliezi and Nyeoha Thomas Wokpeogwu.
A communique issued at the end of the meeting thanked the state governor for the rehabilitation work going on along Elele Port Harcourt road as well as other programmes designed to alleviate unemployment problems facing youths.

The communique also appealed to the PDP and the government to rehabilitate those who suffered injuries or those whose houses and property were vandalized during the April 2003 elections at Elele.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.