L-R: Gov. Henry Seriake Dickson, Sen. Douye Diri, Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo

Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo is an Ijaw man – he can vote and be voted for.

Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo has reacted to the claims by some faceless and mindless Ijaw folks that he’s an Urhobo man, hence not qualified to be nominated as a running mate to Sen .Douye Diri, Flagbearer of the People Democratic Party (PDP) in the forthcoming elections in Bayelsa State, contained in an online Nation publication.

Sen Lawrence in a statement issued by his Media Assistant, Clement Ovokeroye Paul, in Yenagoa, said  he is a bona-fide Ijaw folk whose ancestral root and that of his people in Ofoni is linked to the Tarakiri Kingdom in Bayelsa State.

Lawrence said those classifying him as an Urhobo man are only showcasing their inferiority complex and aboriginal hatred for their own people, aimed at amplifying their greed and aggrandisement. He said apart from being an Ijaw man, every Nigerian irrespective of their geographical location has the right to vote and be voted for.

See full statement below:

“BAYELSA GUBER:
THAT OFONI IS AN URHOBO SPEAKING COMMUNITY DOES NOT NEGATE THE FACT THAT HER SONS AND DAUGHTERS ARE BONA-FIDE BAYELSANS BY GEOGRAPHY AND IJAW PEOPLE BY GENEALOGY; SEN. LAWRENCE EWHRUDJAKPO IS A SON OF THE SOIL: HIS NOMINATION AS A RUNNING MATE TO SEN. DOUYE DIRI IS IN RIGHT DIRECTION

My attention has been drawn to the crass ignorance and sheer display of aboriginal sentiment contained in a newspaper publication on “The Nation Online” titled “WE WON’T ALLOW IMPOSITION OF URHOBO AS BAYELSA DEPUTY GOVERNOR” by those in mindless opposition in Bayelsa state against the nomination of Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo Esq “whose biological progenitors are bona-fide natives of Ofoni federated communities in Tarakiri Clan, Sagbama Local Government area of Bayelsa State” as running mate to Sen. Douye Diri, Flagbearer of the People Democratic Party (PDP) in the November 16th Governorship election in Bayelsa State.

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The faceless Ijaw folks claimed that Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo who is presently a serving Senator representing the productive people of Bayelsa West in the Nigerian Senate is not an Ijaw man. Though I am not surprised that this height of witnessness is being showcased by political MARIONETTES whose venture is to blackmail people for a living and indulge in campaign of calumny and engage people in a constant religion/ political innuendoes to the advantage of their paymasters to cover up their inferiority complex and high level of incompetency, I am only shocked that these simpletons (some) are self acclaimed custodians of ijaw traditions in Ijaw nation.

To set the record straight, but for those who care to know, Ofoni federated communities is a Tarakiri community in Sagbama Local Government Area in Bayelsa state, as such Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo and other sons and daughters of the aforementioned community are true sons and daughters of ijaw nation. But, who is an Ijaw man, if Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo not? An Ijaw man is not anyone who speaks izon or bears ijaw name, knowing anyone can speak izon or bear ijaw names. An ijaw man is one whose parents are of ijaws by GENEALOGY.

Genealogically, like every other sons and daughters of Ofoni federated communities, Mr. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo Esq is an ijaw son by genealogy and geography, of Ofoni federated communities.

Ostensibly, and truly so, only political or traditional effigies engulfed by primordial sentiment and hatred for their own people would say the Ofoni sons and daughters are not ijaw people, or Bayelsans in some instances, due to language barrier or the type of names they bear, and frequently do and undo them, to promote their personal aggrandizement. Undoubtedly, names and tongues are not primary factors to ascertain whether or not one is an ijaw man in Bayelsa state. What makes one an ijaw person is his/her ancestral genealogy- in this case, the Tarakiri clan in Bayelsa state. Just like most people in Ofoni federated communities, there are bona-fide ijaw sons and daughters in diaspora who can not speak ijaw language and they don’t bear ijaw names also. They can not be denied of their inalienable rights as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria – the right to vote and be voted for. Should we now say they are not ijaw people and denied them of their privileges because they don’t bear ijaw names or speak the language? Funny enough most of those who claim to be more ijaw, their children can not speak the ijaw language.

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Geographically, Ofoni Federated Communities is not a Delta State Community. Ofoni Town is a Bayelsa State Community geo- located in Sagbama LGA of the State. Absolutely, it is located in Latitude 5* 07′ 34.05″ North of the Equator and Longitude 5* 58′ 50.06″ East of the Green-wich meridian i.e Lat. 5(degree) 07′(minutes) 34.05″(seconds) N and Long. 5(degree) 58′(minutes) 50.06″(seconds) E of the above hemispheres. Ofoni Federated Communities is made up of three (3) autonomous Communities. Each Community is made up of several administrative quarters, several hamlets and farm-steads. Ofoni Federated Communities is clearly separated from Delta State by River Forcados. The community share boundaries with Agalabiri, Alalagbene, Ayamasa, Kpakiama, Odorubu and Odobo Communities respectively. Geographically, the boundary between Bayelsa and Delta State (westward) cut across River Forcados, River Ase and River Niger. By implication, every bona fide native of Ofoni town is a Bayelsan by geography and ijaw kingdom by genealogy. This is because Ofoni is located in Bayelsa West Senatorial District of the State, which is part of the Tarakiri clan.

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Consequently, every indigene of Ofoni town is a Bayelsan by genealogy. History has it that, the indigenes of Ofoni Federated Communities are part of the descendants of Tarakiri Kingdom, which is why Ofoni is one of the six Communities that made up Tarakiri Clan. Ofoni Community is the most populous and the largest Community in Sagbama LGA, and by extension a second largest and most populous homogeneous Federated Communities. Ofoni has two (2) political wards. Ofoni as an ijaw community has an Amanana-owei and Ebetare-owei, in Tarakiri Kingdom.

Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo is not just an ijaw man, he’s competent and capable with proven track records. He is a round peg in a round hole. As an honorable commissioner for works and infrastructure, from inception of the present government, he showed so much commitment, dedication and absolute loyalty, passion and have contributed immensely to infrastructural development, changing the infrastructural deficit the state suffers. Though majority of natives in Ofoni community speak Urhobo language, Mr Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo speaks izon and Urhobo languages fluently, as a doyen.

Sen. Lawrence nomination as a running mate to Sen. Douye Diri is in right direction. Bayelsans should support the candidate of the People Democratic Party (PDP) in the forthcoming election, trusting that they will never regret the choice, Those whipping tribal sentiments are only showcasing their inferiority complex and aboriginal hatred for their own people. There’s no better choice for Deputy Governor than Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo; let’s support him and the PDP Flagbearer, irrespective of political, religion, traditional and cultural affinity or individual differences in the interest of Bayelsa State.

Clement Ovokeroye Paul
Media Assistant To Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, Senator Representing Bayelsa West Senatorial District, Nigerian Senate.”

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