Group flays Ibori’s critics ….. says his traducers can’t survive a day’s scrutiny in British Court

The Niger Delta Patriots, NDP, yesterday took a strong stand against persons they described as “wicked and frightened men,” who are scared shirtless by the political ascendancy of former governor of Delta State, Chief James Onanefe Ibori.

The NDP, a group of Niger Delta intellectuals, said Ibori’s traducers are the very same people who wined and dined with him , but turned around to stick a knife in his back.
In a statement, the group’s President, Dr. Erimeruke Okome, stated that Ibori was more of a victim of high-power- political-play in Nigeria which found its way into the stern and unforgiving British legal system, with predictable consequences.
Going down memory lane, Dr. Okome recalled that the charges against Ibori died a natural death in the Nigeria legal system but as soon as the same charges were transposed on the British legal system, all hell was let loose.
” As someone who has spent considerable time studying the sociology of the British society, it is obvious that the extra legal considerations that undergird legal decisions in the Nigeria system cannot survive in the British system.
“A recent example is the arrest, conviction and sentencing of former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu,”
” this is not to say that the Nigeria system is inferior but every legal system draws oxygen from the sociological considerations that undergird its society.
“Many common daily practices in Nigeria, for instance, will receive hefty sentences in British Courts and because of this, a large spectrum of Nigerian elites whether in politics, business and other walks of life, know it is wise to stay away from the British legal system.
” Large sections of Delta State grieve and continue to grieve what happened to Ibori. We all recall the background events, especially his relentless pursuit of the 13 per cent oil derivation for Niger Delta States and his support for then Vice President Atiku Abubakar, over President Olusegun Obasanjo in the succession politics of 2003, as the dominant political considerations that led to his persecution in Nigeria.
“However, Ibori still remains the poster boy of development in Delta State and a reference point in the South South. In Delta State, it is a well known fact that far reaching and forward thinking development ended 16 years ago when Ibori left office as Governor”he said.
Dr. Okeme fumed that Ibori’s successors were more guilty of the technicalities that put him in trouble in the UK. ” So, let him who is righteous cast the first stone and then Deltans will truly rise against such,” he charged.
He commended President Bola Tinubu for damning critics and identifying Ibori’s political gravitas and wide respect in the Niger Delta and South-South and for “choosing to quietly work with a good man who ran into bad weather.”
He said Deltans and indeed, the entire South-South look forward to great strides of development under the President Tinubu government as steps are already being taken to address the challenges of seaports in Delta State.
“No doubt, the resuscitation of the seaports will bring life back into Delta State and the entire Niger Delta region,” Dr. Okome enthused.

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