Ijaw Interest Advocates (IIA) has accused the Delta State Governor, Dr. Arthur Ifeanyi Okowa of socially discriminating against the Ijaws citing as an example his refusal to visit the flooded Ijaw communities.
In a statement signed jointly by its national coordinator, Arerebo Salaco and Obiri Jonathan, the national spokesman, IIA said: “While he has placed emphasis of care and attention on the communities in Delta North and some parts of Delta Central, he has not made any move to show care and sympathy for the Ijaw riverine communities that have been ravaged by flood.”
Going further, IIA stated: “More surprising is the diverting of the attention of the vice-president who was on tour to the flooded communities. Governor Okowa in his usual style, took the vice-president only to his region (Delta North) without considering the fact that it is the Ijaw riverine communities that are majorly affected by perennial flooding.
“With the visit of the vice-president, we felt that the bitter tales of our environment would be relayed again to the federal quarters but the Governor never deemed it fit to lead the Vice-President to the Ijaw areas.”
According to the statement, more than 100 Ijaw communities have been devastated by the flood with most schools been shut down.
“With the scourge of this flood disaster there are several cases of diseases such as: malaria, typhoid, cholera, e.t.c.
“It is so unfortunate that while the government has neglected to proffer long term solutions such as land reclamation/sand-filling or provide relief materials to cushion the prevalent effects of this disaster, Gov. Okowa has further shown insensitivity to the plight of the Ijaw people by refusing to visit the affected communities.”
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