By Jon Egie
Our attention is drawn to an article titled ‘Delta 2023: David Edevbie Nightmare begins with elder brother journey to prison, ‘purportedly authored by one Barr. Godwin Onoriode.
Based on the contents of the presentation, it would seem that the writer proffered useful advice that could benefit the Urhobo cause for 2023. However, based on the way the article was syndicated to various press houses, it was not difficult to detect the source and the true identity of the writer has been easily unmasked.
While we appreciate the writer and political interest he represents for seemingly acknowledging the well-known truth that Olorogun David Edevbie is the “potential” governor of Delta State come 2023, we would like to correct the wrong impression that he (David) will be imposed on Deltans. May we remind the writer that Olorogun David Edevbie was the choice political ambassador of the Urhobo people in 2014 when the Urhobo Progress Union (UPU) endorsed him. We all know who the other contestants were at the time. We, therefore, see no reason why the writer chose to drag Chief James Ibori name into his discourse and accuse the revered politician of having sworn to impose David Edevbie as governor of Delta State come 2023 “by hook or crook”. That was clearly a feeble attempt to vilify the political prowess and leadership charisma of Ibori that is accepted and respected by the political class of Delta State as a national leader. No politician in Delta State would toe the line of such insults, including the Deputy President of the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege. So, what was the writer’s motive?
It is evident that the writer, out of a devious intent to smear the reputation of Olorogun David Edevbie deliberately skidded on to the path of propaganda in an attempt to titillate and manipulate the public trust, confidence and respect for the Edevbie family. The writer did so by referring to June 8, 2020, Federal High Court, Lagos Order of interim forfeiture of the sum of N827,679,098 from an account purportedly belonging to Engineer Matthew Edevbie, a contractor with the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), as the nemesis of Olorogun David Edevbie ahead of 2023 governorship election.
The writer’s comments are wholly prejudicial, knowing full well that the matter is due for hearing on June 29. It is a well-established principle that an accused has the right to defend himself. The writer also went ahead to insinuate that Engineer Matthew Edevbie would be sent to jail and the writer and his political paymaster noted that Edevbie’s ‘”opponent” would feast on the “ordeal” to further manipulate the people not to vote Olorogun David Edevbie which the writer sees as the biggest river David will be crossing ahead of 2023.
It is good that the writer acknowledged that he had little or no knowledge of the nexus between David and Matthew and such ignorance should have guided him in keeping mute over matters that were not of his concern rather than playing to the gallery in an attempt to mislead the public.
For the writer’s information, Matthew Edevbie is David’s uncle and is a businessman of international repute, a seasoned Engineer with over 30 years in various aspects of electrical engineering concept, design, procurement, construction, operations management, maintenance and consulting. A Fellow of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), member of the Nigeria Institute of Management Consultants, registered member of the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), The Nigeria Environmental Society and active member of Enterprise Development Services (EDS) of the Lagos Business School.
Matthew Edevbie is the Chief Executive Officer/MD of Income Electrix Limited, with offices in Port Harcourt and other cities across Nigeria and West Africa. He is also the MD of 4Power Construction Limited among other companies and a major stakeholder in PortHarcourt Electricity Distribution Company, PHEDC. He is an active contractor with the NDDC.
How could the writer say that a man of such local and international stature and who has a voice in deciding the economic dial of Nigeria is “very slow to act” and hence, the June 8, Lagos High Court Order brouhaha?
It is on record that recently, Income Electrix got a contract from the NDDC to power some communities in Rivers State. According to the MD of NDDC, Prof Nelson Brambaifa, the contract is an ongoing pilot project listing Ubiama, Isiokpo and several communities in Ikwere LGA as beneficiaries. The project is near completion with the installation of eight transformers in Ubiama and the communities will receive electricity supply from two electric substations in Ahoada and Rumuosi. Eze Blessing Wagor, Chairman of Supreme Council of Ikwere traditional rulers praised NDDC for the restoration of electricity to the communities after several years of blackout while the NDDC was proud of its contractor, Income Electrix headed by Matthew Edevbie.
Does the writer now see the folly behind his self-made fear that if Olorogun David Edevbie is elected governor of Delta State, he would use the State’s funds to service his “brother’s” (Matthew) company? That is a misguided assumption that can only have emerged from a poorly schooled mind. Matthew is already a well-established businessman. The writers’ weak attempts to link Engineer Matthew’s current business travails to his nephew’s so-called governorship ambition is mischievous, to say the least. Challenges are normal in life and must be tackled when such, as the writer presented, arise as we expect Matthew to do on 29th June 2020.
Meanwhile, let me assure the writer that Olorogun David Edevbie’s road to becoming the governor of Delta State come 2023, if he chooses to run, is “within reach”, and there is no Achilles’ heel to conquer on the path of success and ultimate victory for the PDP, Delta State and the Urhobo people in general.
Jon Egie, wrote from Asaba, Delta State.