Against all odds, Delta Gov Okowa celebrates Ibori at 58

Despite the ex-convict stigma, the former governor of Delta State, James Ibori, has continued to enjoy loyalty and respect from the political class in the state.

Ibori was convicted of corruption and money laundering in the U.K in 2012 and was jailed for 13 years.

He returned to Nigeria in February 2017 after being released from the U.K prison in December 2016.

Ibori is alleged to have stolen more than $250 million from the treasury of the oil-rich Delta State, plunging even more of his people into abject poverty and deprivation.

Incumbent governor of Delta State, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, while celebrating Ibori on his 58th birthday Thursday, however, described the former governor as having made immense contributions to the development of the state and Nigeria as a whole.

“Deltans and Nigerians cannot forget in a hurry how you laboured to build the most virile, potent and unassailable political family in Delta State and beyond even as your legacies still dot the nooks and crannies of the state,” Okowa’s spokesperson, Charles Aniagwu, quoted the governor as saying of Ibori.

Okowa, who described Ibori as “an astute administrator and enthusiastic leader of impeccable disposition,” said the former governor championed the fight for resource control and fiscal federalism in the country.

“On behalf of the government and people of Delta State, I felicitate with a leader par excellence, Chief James Ibori, on the occasion of his 58th birthday.

“It is our prayer that God will continue to protect you and grant you good health to render more services to mankind,” the governor said.


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