By Unue Emeka,
Delta State Government has denied having a hand in the factional crisis which leads to the postponement of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Warri Depot Unit election.
The Delta State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Barr. Peter Mrakpor, made the clarification at a press briefing held on Monday in Asaba, urging Deltans to disregard the rumour going around.
According to him, it was necessary to make the clarification because of different stories that had been going on, saying that the Delta State Government has no preferred candidate.
Mrakpor stated further that, “the State Government was not conducting any union election nor had any plan of such, stressing that the Government role, based on IPMAN appeal, was to assist in creating an enabling environment.
“I was nominated to represent the government in the committee that has two members from the Ben Jones faction (the incumbent Chairman) and the Zino faction, and at the end of the Security Council meeting, the committee met in its inaugural meeting at Government Asaba and resolved that on Wednesday, 23rd November, 2017 another meeting will be held at Government House Annex, Warri, to have the verification exercise.”
He further stated that after the Delta State Security Council met with the two factions of IPMAN, Warri Depot Unit, it was agreed that Delta State Government should assist by creating an enabling environment for the body to have an election on December 1, 2017.
The Commissioner however stated that by the 22nd November, 2017, the Ben Jones faction pulled out of the exercise, adding that on 23rd November, 2017, the Zino faction went to a Federal High Court in Warri in suit No HFAC/WRCR 11 2017, where they sued the current chairman and the Honourable Attorney-General of Delta State as the 7th Defendant.
“As one party has pulled out and the second gone to court, the State Security Council met and decided that it was best to put the election on hold pending when the matters in court are resolved. Until the parties have their issues resolved it is not safe to have an election in an atmosphere of acrimony”, the Attorney-General stated.
He said that the Attorney-General had been joined as a party in the suit, saying it meant that the Attorney-General could no longer function as an arbiter in creating the enabling environment for the election to hold but would rather be busy filing papers for his defence.