Expressing the concern in Port Harcourt, Ogonis under the Ogoni Sim Vanguard (OSV), listed Ogoni poor voting strength, doubtful tickets, unpopular party platforms and poor electoral value based on past poor performance among weaknesses that make a vote for an Ogoni candidate for the 2023 governorship election a wasted effort.
Espousing the permutations, Coordinator of OSV and pioneer President, Ogoni Youth Council, Marvin Yobana, said, “The person we (Ogonis) are to activate as next governor is the Sim (PDP candidate) and they already have their PVCs. They need to activate the Sim by using the PVC.
“Some persons ask why are Ogonis are supporting Sim when you have candidates of Ogoni extraction running for governor. Now let’s explain it by simple arithmetics. Ogoni speaking Local Government Areas (LGAs) are four out of 23 across the state. Deduct four from 23, you have 19.
“Look at total voting strength of Khana, Gokana, Tail and Eleme (All Ogonis LGAs) tied together. It is almost the voting strength of one LGA, like Port Harcourt City. Tell me, how do you produce an Ogoni governor with the voting strength of one LGA as of the Ikwerres? I’m not talking of large Obio-Akpor yet.
“That is not to say nobody from Ogoni cannot become governor, but the other challenge is under what platform are you running and what are your chances of winning. You want people to tie their future to your failure and go and waste their votes and the person who emerges governor will now say you people did not support me.
“If you must contest election, you must seek ticket through a primary on a party platform to become a candidate to contest the office you want to contest. Look at the parties running for Rivers governorship that have Ogonis as candidates. One party had an Ogoni man and some other person is substituting him, but INEC has not made that very clear to us.
“Another party that had failed Nigerians also has somebody of Ogoni extraction as running mate. I hear in one other party somewhere that two Ogoni men are in court over who is candidate. How can Ogonis bet on uncertainties?
“I only see the PDP as the platform that has shown capacity and has the structure around the state, has the numbers and has tangible records to show people on good governance, on things that touch their lives directly.
“And the PDP is fielding somebody also from Ogoni axis, from Opobo. To face reality and say, if you put this candidates together and weight them by what they and their parties have to offer, PDP will win. We don’t know the other parties.”
Yobana urged the electorate in Ogoni to embrace the sensitisation on registration and collection of PVCs to ensure all votes from Ogoni count for the PDP for seamless sustenance of the PDP administration that has committed so much for the development of Ogoniland.