By Omoghene Benedict
The Urhobo Progress Union (UPU) Worldwide has denied media reports that it has adopted Olorogun Kenneth Gbagi, as sole candidate in the 2023 governorship race.
In a release, the Publicity Secretary of UPU, Hon. Abel Oshevire, said the UPU is nonpartisan and an umbrella body of all Urhobos. Oshevire said the remarks of Olorogun Moses Taiga, the UPU President-General, was misunderstood.
Acknowledging Olorogun Kenneth Gbagi as an illustrious son of Urhobo land, he was well-received by the UPU National Officers present, Oshevire said Olorogun Moses Taiga during the visit offered prayers for Olorogun Gbagi, wishing him well in his aspiration, but “spoke on the need for the Urhobo Nation to have one voice and present a single candidate in 2023.”
The President-General was emphatic that at the right time, “UPU will summon the entire Urhobo Nation” on the issue of the governorship, even as he charged Kenneth Gbagi to press on in his consultations.
Oshevire said Gbagi’s visit was a private visit and that the UPU Exco never met with Gbagi as a body. “He only paid a private visit to Olorogun Taiga at Okpare who told him to come and see the UPU at the appropriate time.
Of course, at the appropriate time, the UPU will naturally wish every Urhobo person aspiring for the top position good luck. What the UPU will ensure is that the position comes to Urhobo. That, we will never, ever compromise.”
Oshevire added that “the UPU is not a political party and maintains its neutrality and will not interfere in the internal mechanism of political parties on the choice of governorship candidates before the general elections that are even few years away.
However, UPU’s insistence has been that Urhobo must speak with one voice, avoid multiplicity of governorship candidates in the 2023 Election. The UPU also wants the Delta Central Senatorial District, which is wholly Urhobo, to produce the governor in 2023 with the support of our neighbours.“