Otuokpoti Monarch Remains Dethroned, Says Gov Diri


Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has stated that despite protests from some quarters, the removal of the paramount ruler of Otuokpoti community in Ogbia Local Government Area, Chief Cousin Wongo, is irrevocable.
Governor Diri had on Monday, announced the monarch’s dethronement as well as the removal of the Community Development Committee chairman and its Youth President following their complicity in the kidnap of the Commissioner for Trade, Industry and Investment, Mr. Federal Otokito, from his residence in the community.
Mr. Otokito regained his freedom on Monday after his abductors inflicted severe injuries on him.
Speaking during a reception at Otuokpoti shortly after commissioning a Divisional Police Station constructed by the Ogbia council chairman, Ebiyon Turner, Governor Diri said the sack of the monarch and the others accorded with the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution, and the laws of Bayelsa State.

“I did not depose your paramount ruler because I hated him. The circumstances that led to his dethronement are known to me and the Commissioner of Police. That deposition stands. Anybody that is protesting, I am very sorry.
“As governor, once I make a pronouncement, that is it. Nobody can do anything about it. In the Constitution and the laws of Bayelsa on chieftaincy and traditional rulers, final authority lies with the governor.”
He also disclosed that the Commissioner of Police had earlier hinted that the police command in the state had its searchlight on the community before the kidnap of Mr. Otokito.
Governor Diri admonished the newly appointed paramount ruler, Chief Rescue Abe, to unite the Otuokpoti people and not allow the community to be used for criminal and illegal oil refining activities.
“This government will not condone crime and criminality. The newly appointed paramount ruler and his cabinet should work to see that there is love in Otuokpoti community.
“The paramount ruler, community development committee chairman and the youth president were the sacrificial lambs as there were also other people involved. Several others were culpable. If we go down, it would cause trouble for many people. That is why we took the leaders as the sacrificial lambs”, the Governor said.
The governor, who decried oil bunkering activities in the state, highlighted the health hazards arising from such acts to include terminal illness and environmental pollution among others.
He said the dethronement of Chief Wongo should be a warning to other traditional rulers not to allow their domains to be used for intra or inter-communal conflicts and committing of crimes.

Acceding to the request of the committee the request of the community, Governor Diri directed the Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Moses Teibowei, to construct the road to the new police station.
He also directed the Education Commissioner, Gentle Emelah, to include fencing of the community’s secondary school as well as building of new classroom blocks in the next batch of contracts to be awarded.

The governor, who was accompanied by the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ben Okolo, and other senior officials of his government, commended the Ogbia council chairman, Ebiyon Turner, for initiating and completing the facility.
He noted however, that the structure would no longer be adequate for its current status as it was initially built as a police post, and directed that it be upgraded.
Reminding chairmen of councils in the state of his directive on legacy projects, the Governor urged them to emulate the Ogbia chairman by embarking on projects that would impact the lives of the people.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here