The immediate past governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole; Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa; and his predecessor, Emmanuel Uduaghan, were among the dignitaries who attended a reception in honour of a former governor of Delta State, James Ibori.
Oshiomhole, who spoke at the event on Saturday, said the ex-convict former governor was among those who fought for resource control during the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
He added that Ibori fought for equity and justice for the minority ethnic groups, particularly those in the Niger Delta, adding that it was the reason people in the region were still celebrating him despite being jailed in the UK.
The reception was organised by the immediate past Secretary to the Delta State Government, Mr. Ovuozourie Macaulay, at Owhelogbo, Isoko North Local Government Area of the state.
Oshiomhole, who described Ibori as a bridge builder whose efforts helped many politicians to occupy political positions, urged him to continue using his position to positively contribute to the development of humanity.
He said, “I appreciate Ibori for several reasons. When we needed men to support the struggle for resource control, we found a worthy partner in Ibori. Ibori spoke with courage in the quest for equity and justice for the minorities.
“James Ibori fought gallantly for his people and little wonder he is celebrated all over the state.
“James Ibori is a bridge builder across all divides.”
In his remarks, Okowa, who was a commissioner in the Ibori administration, said Ibori was a leader with a strong political family which he used to unite the people of the state.
Also, Uduaghan called on the people not to put down their leaders particularly those in the position of authority, stating that Ibori would never go down.
In his speech, Ibori said he would always contribute to the socio-economic development of Delta State and Nigeria at large, adding that he would be happy with the strengthening of the country’s democracy.