Delta Flood Victims Protest, Barricade Gov’t House, Give Governor Okowa 14 Days To Compensate Them


 Delta State

Some victims of flooding in Delta state have staged a protest, according to SaharaReporters.

The flood victims stormed the state government house, Asaba to protest against the corrupt way and manner compensation funds were disbursed to victims”.

The protest comes less than 24 hours after the state finance commissioner, Fidelis Tilije, while defending the 13 percent derivation funds accrued to the state as recently exposed by the Rivers state governor, Nyesom Wike, said that during the recent flooding that affected the state, the government released part of the N14.7 billion 13 percent derivation funds so far received to cater for victims.

The protestors numbering over 100 from various communities in the Isoko South Local Government Area of the state on Thursday stormed the Government House, along Awai Road, Asaba and barricaded the entrance.

They condemned the “fraudulent and corrupt manner” government officials carried out the payment of compensation to flood victims last week at Oleh.

The protestors who issued a 14-day ultimatum to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa to compensate them warned that they would hold the ‘mother of all protests’ at the Government House if the ultimatum was ignored.

The protesters displayed placards with various messages, one of which accused one Moses, an aide to the Isoko South council chairman, of conniving with the camp commandant of the Isoko Central School IDPs camp and other government officials, especially the state orientation bureau to shortchange flood victims.

One of the protesting victims, who simply identified himself as Ewoma, lamented the “fraudulent and corrupt” way the government officials in charge of the compensation carried it out. He alleged that several millions of naira meant for flood victims have found their way into private pockets.

“Even the St Michaels College IDPs camp Oleh was full of discrimination and was used as a conduit to loot government treasury. One Prosper, an aide on DESOPADEC (Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission) to the state governor was larger than life at the camp, ejecting, rejecting and treating victims with disdain while accepting majorly only victims from his area, Igbide community and Uzere community where his political godfather, the DESOPADEC MD, Askia Ogieh hails from.

“We were not taken good care of, and when the government officials came to Oleh to pay victims compensation of N50, 000 and N100, 000 each as the case may be, to our surprise, people that were being paid were strangers with strange faces, their family members, girlfriends who were never seen any day at the ICS camp.

“For every 20 names that they called, only two or three will come out among the real flood victims while the rest that was paid were never known to us or even seen in the camp. The payment the government officials came for was just a mere jamboree to amass illicit wealth to our own detriment.

“The fraud and corruption that took place at the ICS IDPs camp were enormous. Those government officials only came to pay themselves, not flood victims with what happened last week at the ICS IDPs camp, Oleh.”

Some of the flood victims, on Monday staged a protest at Isoko South secretariat, Oleh to register their grievances over the non-payment of their compensation.

Addressing the protesting flood victims at the Government House entrance gate, the chief economic adviser to the state governor, Kingsley Emu, appealed to the victims to remain calm.

He promised to tell Governor Okowa about their plight for appropriate and immediate action to be taken.

He, however, appealed to them to return to their various communities pending when they shall get feedback from the governor whom he said was not in the state.

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