We listened and read with dismay, Hon. Amupitan Emmanuel, (a.k.a Chemical), antics and the way he lambasted the committee members put in place by the entire Kiri people to check and succinctly screen all the political documents of all the prospective aspirants for the forth coming local government election and also got your petition with a threat to take legal actions on all the Kiri people for this actions. We have also read in various platforms how you tried to discredit the process and to also run down the integrity of our great son of Kiri, Hon. Oloruntoba Kehinde because of your desperation and overzealousness to dance to the dictate of your sponsor.
For the knowledge of all who may not know the genesis and how the screening came to be, we will shed light on it to clarify and substantiate our position.
For over a month now, there have been different stakeholders meeting of both at Kabba/Bunu local government and Bunu at the different residence and official lodge of a high ranking politician from Kabba/Bunu LGA where it was agreed that, since both the elective offices for House of Representative which is running the third terms of 4years now and the state of House of Assembly that is usually rotated between Bunu and Kabba district every four years is also being allowed to run for another four years concurrently because Kabba/Bunu for the first time is the speaker of the house. Because of these two reasons, zoning the chairmanship position to Bunu people became paramount.
Consequently, we are aware the stakeholders in Bunu, held several meetings at some designated lodge in Lokoja where you were always present and even claimed the meetings were sponsored by your principal to the tune of N500,000 for every seating and lambasted Kiri people for not going to say thank you to your boss for this gesture for zoning the chairmanship to Kiri because the Bunu south are the one holding the different political offices of the present regime.
All these have been playing out with your involvement and that of your sponsor despite that you know that SIEC has not been inaugurated and the elections time table has not been rolled out.
We also have been seeing your campaign posters and pictures online and your various consultations with party executives, stakeholders and individuals including all the committee members indicating your willingness to contest for the chairmanship position, despite that SIEC has not been inaugurated and the elections time table is yet to be released.
The entire Kiri stakeholders have been watching with keen interest the various ways you have been engaging the other intending aspirant in hot arguments, blackmailing them and attacking their personalities which have generated undue tension in Kiri to the extent that some Kiri people are being threatened in Kabba by your supporters.
For these reasons, all the stakeholders in Kiri decided to meet at the invitation of the local government, Wards chairmen and Hon. Kehinde Oloruntoba who is our leader in Kiri today.
Ten stakeholders were carefully selected from each of the two wards and the agenda of the meeting was for the two wards in Kiri to come and debate why the chairmanship position should go to either of the ward and it was decided by them to exempt all the 9 aspirants from the meeting to avert any confrontation.
The debate revealed various political histories and at the end, the elders at the meeting with their wisdom resolved that, we should all be mindful of our relationship in Kiri and should see the unity of Kiri as more important than any individual ambition.
It was therefore agreed that, the Kiri stakeholders should constitute a 7-man committee to invite all the 9 aspirants to meet the committee with all their political documents and the committee were mandated to succinctly screen those documents in order to avert the kind of scenario that played out at Bayelsa governorship election recently where the APC governorship candidates were disqualified 24 hours to their swearing in.
Also, part of the committee term of reference is to recommend back to the Kiri stakeholders every aspirants that is qualified to contest for this position and if need be, appeal to some of them to step down for each other and if perhaps, the qualified ones refuse to step down and every avenue has been explored, Kiri stakeholders will now subject them to shadow primary and whoever emerges become the candidate of Kiri people.
The 7-man committee was set up and the party chairman of Kabba/Bunu local government, Hon. Olorunmosule Elisha was made to chairman the committee but somebody raised an observation that the committee reports should be presented to him and as such he can’t chairman the committee again. At that instance, Hon. Oloruntoba Kehinde was requested to stand fort for him and cross check the committee reports before presenting it to Hon. Olorunmosule Elisha and the stakeholders for ratification.
Hon. Oloruntoba Kehinde objected vehemently to this but we implored him to act in proxy while at the committee levels, we appointed Hon. Samuel Obanibi to chairman the committee and also unanimously appointed Prince Jibowu Mosiko to be the secretary because we see ourselves as one in Kiri and want a good job done irrespective of the community we hail from.
Before we left the meeting, Hon. Amupitan Emmanuel called to rubbish the stakeholders and the committee formed to do this fantastic job and threatened that he doesn’t need the Kiri executives to win the elections because he has all the Kabba executives in his pocket as being funded by his Almighty sponsor. Also, some of his supporter sent WhatsApp messages to the committee secretary threatening that the committee can not work and it will never work.
The committee was unperturbed by this and we decided to write all the 9 aspirants to please attend the committee screening on 28th February 2020 at Kudon Hotel, latest 9am to commence the screening exercise.
Initially, Hon. Chemical refused to collect the letter from Hon. Olowosaiye Femi but when we informed the committee chairman, Hon. Obanibi Samuel and his ward chairman, Mr. Ojo Adebayo, they both persuaded him to take the letter and sign the acknowledgement copy but Hon. Chemical collected both the original and the acknowledgement copy and never return it uptill now, threatening that Kiri stakeholders cannot determine his political ambition because he has a schemer with financial might as his boss.
The committee members didn’t relent, as we placed a call to him when we commenced our sitting imploring him to attend the screening.
Hon. Chemical first sent a non aspirant to the committee in order to disrupt the meeting but the members handled it with maturity and himself later showed up where he lambasted all the committee members, the Kiri stakeholders and some of the seated aspirants and walked out. Forty minutes later, he phoned the committee chairman, Hon. Obanibi Samuel to see him outside the gate of the hotel and when the chairman came back, he handed over the photocopy of Hon. Chemical petition to the committee members, therein threatened to take legal actions against Kiri stakeholders for constituting the committee which he tagged illegal and to also join the committee in the litigation for asking the aspirants to pay N30,000 for the screening.
Interestingly, Hon. Chemical placed different calls to the remaining 8 aspirants a day before the screening commenced asking them to dishonour the invitation of the committee set up by the Kiri stakeholders but they all told him that Kiri unity and love is above their individual ambition and they cannot rubbish Kiri decision and have all been screened except Hon. Chemical who feels he is above every other person in Kiri because of his almighty sponsor.
Thereafter, we read with surprise how he has been writing derogatory articles against the committee and our son, Hon. Oloruntoba Kehinde in order to satisfy the inordinate ambition of his boss against 2023.
Barely 12 hours after the committee met, on 29th February 2020, his soinsore summoned the local government executives to his lodge again perhaps threatening them to mount pressure on Kiri people to stop every screening exercise that may lead to shadow primary among the aspirants, disparaging us for collecting N30,000 as screening fees when his aspirant has never been a financial member of the party.
As much as we appreciate the zoning arrangement to Kiri, we implore all involved and Hon. Chemical sponsor to allow Kiri people to decide who represent us as chairman, if truly the zoning arrangement is to demonstrate their love for Kiri people except if it is a Greek gift
We have a common proverb in Kiri that says, if you dash somebody a dog, you should also release the rope
We also appeal that Hon. Chemical sponsor should stop interfering with who emerges as our various councillors because we have our peculiar ways of rotating the various political offices in Kiri that will not lead to acrimony.
That our unity in Kiri is paramount to us than any temporary political office because we are all inter-related.
That the sponsor of Hon. Chemical should caution his aspirant against further derogatory publication against the Kiri people, the stakeholders, the committee and especially our dear son, Hon. Oloruntoba Kehinde.
The sponsor should also advice his aspirant to subject himself to the screening committee because this is the decision of Kiri people and we will stand by it except he has skeleton in his cupboard because charity they said, begins at home.
The purported writer James Dare is not a known name in Kiri land. Hon. Chemical should therefore be bold enough to sign any article written by him or any of his team and not fabricate fictitious names that’s non existent in Kiri because we know ourselves.
Hon. Chemical should not single out Hon. Oloruntoba Kehinde for attack because he has been paid by his boss nor exonerate any member of the committee or stakeholders because he wants to attract cheap political sympathy so that his political and life long misdeeds will not be exposed.
We want to also appeal that Kiri heritage is sacrosanct to us and anybody no matter how highly placed that infringe on the foundation of love, unity and peaceful coexistence of our people, either by trying to cause confusing in a way of wanting to foist an unpopular candidate on us will attracted the ancestral spirits of our great forefathers with grave consequences.
All these we plead for because the future is far
Screening Committee for Kiri Aspirants