We Can’t Trust Dokpesi as Ogiadomhe’s Successor, Says Edwin Clark
Amid speculations that President Goodluck Jonathan might pick media mogul, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, to succeed his former Chief of Staff, Chief Mike Ogiadomhe, who resigned on Monday, Ijaw leader, Chief Edwin Clark, has advised the president against it.
He said Dokpesi, Chairman of DAAR Communications, owners of African Independent Television (AIT) and Ray Power Radio, was not a suitable choice as Jonathan’s chief of staff because of his alleged treacherous character.
His opposition to the consideration of Dokpesi as the next chief of staff to the president came in the wake of wild jubilation in Fugar, the administrative headquarters of Etsako Central Local Government Area of Edo State, following the resignation of Ogiadomhe.
Clark, at a press conference in Kiagbodo, Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State yesterday, said he was opposed to Dokpesi being picked to replace Ogiadomhe.
He also accused Dokpesi of working closely with certain political opponents of Jonathan in the past, saying he could not have had such a sudden integrity somersault to be entrusted with the position.
“It is being rumoured that since the resignation of Chief Mike Ogiadomhe as chief of staff (to the president), the name of Raymond Dokpesi has appeared in many newspapers as a likely replacement for Ogiadomhe as chief of staff,” he added.
He described Dokpesi as being unfit and an improper person to succeed Ogiadomhe.
He added: “I am aware of the fact that Chief Raymond Dokpesi has been a regular caller at the presidency for some time now, without showing any sense of remorse and during his aggressive and notorious activities against President Jonathan between 2010 and 2011, particularly when he was the Campaign Director-General of President Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida.
“We later discovered that the grievances Chief Raymond Dokpesi had against Mr. President at the time was that the federal government refused to pay him the sum of N7 billion, after the U-17 World Cup competition in Abuja. We observed that shamefully, he found himself into the presidential campaign team when Babangida, Atiku Abubakar, General Ibrahim Gusau and Dr. Bukola Saraki among others, failed in their bid to stop President Jonathan’s re-election.
However, when asked what he thought about the speculation that the former governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Attahiru Bafarawa, might be chosen for the position, Clark said he had no personal interest in Ogiadomhe’s successor, adding that he was sufficiently knowledgeable about the antecedents of Dokpesi to declare him unsuitable for the job.
He said: “President Jonathan is at liberty to appoint whoever he chooses as his chief-of-staff.
Clark said though Jonathan had the constitutional authority, particularly under “Section 5 of the constitution to pick a person for the post (and) no one, therefore, can interfere or attempt to dictate to him,” he was duty bound “to speak my mind on any issue” as an elder statesman and senior citizen of Nigeria.
“I want to state categorically that Dokpesi is not fit and proper person to replace Ogiadomhe in all aspects, having regard to his antecedent. Therefore, I wish to warn that those who are championing the cause or lobbying for him should put Nigeria first,” he said.
Meanwhile, Fugar, Ogiadomhe’s hometown, was in ecstatic mood yesterday as people celebrated his exit from the presidency.
Their anger, according to sources, was premised on the fact that the former chief of staff failed to attract any meaningful development to the area since his appointment.
They said the only visible project in the community was initiated by the late former Chief of General Staff (CGS), Admiral Mike Okhai Akhigbe.
“We are happy when we heard the news. Of what relevant is Ogiadomhe to Fugar, Etsako, Edo North and Edo people whom he has neglected? Rather than developing his people, he used his position to oppress and intimidate our poor people. Look at what the late Akhigbe had done for us, but sadly he (Ogiadomhe) prefers to keep enmity until his death with a man who brought him to reckoning in Edo State. For us, it is a welcome development,” some of them said.
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