A crisis is currently brewing in the Isoko North Local Government Area of Delta State following a bribery demand of N500,000 each from five candidates awaiting to be screened and confirmed as supervisory councilors by the twenty members of the local council.
Confiding in SaharaReporters, one of the five would-be supervisory councilors who pleaded for anonymity disclosed that the twenty councilors, led by the leader of the Isoko North legislative arms, Felix Ogona, have insisted that until the bribe of N500,000 each is paid by five of them, none of them will been screened and confirmed as supervisory councilors in the council. The stalling has gone on now for several weeks.
"The council chairman has [asked] them to drop such corrupt demands and carry out their lawful duties of screening and confirming us as supervisory councilors, but the twenty councilors have continued to pay deaf ears to the council chairman's plea. As we talk, everything still remains [at a] standstill pending when we give them the bribe of the N500,000 each," the would-be supervisory councilor lamented.
An anonymous Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader in the LGA who is knowledgeable on the issue told SaharaReporters that the issue is already generating a serious controversy as well as imminent crisis as all efforts by political leaders in the area to make the corrupt councilors drop their demands have failed.
"Collecting money before candidates are screened and confirm for any political appointment is nothing but corruption,” the PDP leader said. Citing the corrupt practices of House Speaker Monday Igbuya in the Delta State Assembly, he mentioned that the local councilors have followed Mr. Igbuya’s example. "Now, that same corrupt attitude has been copied by our own local legislative arms… We [have] heard some youths in the local government are grouping for a mass protest should the corrupt councilors refuse to screen and confirm the candidates unconditionally.”
At the time of filing in this report, all calls and messages to the phone of the leader of the legislative arm, Mr. Ogona were rebuffed.