It was a classical case of a prophet deservedly getting his due honour in his own land as the people of Opobo/ Nkoro Local Government Area deftly refused to do the contrary at the grand finale of the Grassroots Development Initiative (GDI) PVC Sensitization/Collection Rally which took place at the ancient town of Opobo on Saturday.
They came in their thousands, filling up available spaces at the popular Opobo Park where the event was held. From every part of the state, the GDI mobilized, to make the grand finale a historic success. Hence, the man of the moment, Amaopu Senibo Siminialayi received a deserved red carpet treatment not only from his people but from the rest of the state.
And, despite the intermittent downpour which had disrupted outdoor occasions in the past days; the prevalent clement weather that graced the event, spoke volume of God’s divine endorsement.
It was a roll call of some of the who-is-who in the political arena of the state as well as the traditional institution in Opobo Kingdom, commerce and industry. Among those in the entourage of ‘Son of the Soil’ and Rivers governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Amaopu Warisenibo Siminilayi Joseph Fubara are his deputy, Prof. Ngozi Odu; Chairman of the State PDP, Amb. Desmond Akawor; Deputy Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Edison Ehie; Assembly Majority Leader, Hon. Martin Amaewhule, Member representing Opobo/Nkoro Constituency at the House of Assembly, Hon. Adonye Kelly Diri; Mayor of Port Harcourt, Hon. Alwell Ihunda and his counterparts, Engr. (Dr.) Samuel Nwanosike, Dr. Thomas Bariere and other Council Chairmen.
Also present at the historic event was Senator Adawari Mac-Pepple; Senator Barry Mpigi, representing Rivers South-East in the National Assembly; Former Minister, Chief Kenneth Kobani; Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Host Communities, Rt. Hon. Dumnamene Robinson Dekor; Dr Sam-Sam Jaja; Mrs. Sotonye Toby Fulton and a horde of other prominent government officials and chieftains of the PDP, including Government House Chief of Staff, Chief Chukwuemeka Woke.
Aware that they were coming to draw the curtains on the PVC Sensitization campaign in Opobo, executives and members of the Chief Bright Amewhule-led GDI came to Opobo in their numbers and in their best.
The traditional institution was not left out, as they were ably represented by a sizable number of Alapu from different War Canoe Houses. Under the auspices of ‘Opobo Elder Statesmen 4 SIM’, the group also had in their midst, professionals and some distinguished sons of Opobo Kingdom.
They were basically at the event to sensitize the people of Opobo and Nkoro on the need to collect their PVCs and use them to vote for their son as the next governor of Rivers State, come 2023.
To add pep to the occasion, a host of traditional masquerade groups were around to showcase the rich cultures of the Opobo and Nkoro people. Prominent among them was the famous Ogele Mkpa cultural dance, thrilling the audience in their traditional blue and white strapped attire.
They were led by a little boy, not more than seven years. The kid showed that Opobo cultures and tradition is far from diminishing, as he displayed amazing talent, showing off steps that left the crowd spellbound.
Even the Ward-by-Ward gyration added much vigor to the event as each ward danced and sang, adorned in their best colours, to outshine the other.
It was a difficult decision for the judges, to tell which of the thirteen Wards actually carried the day! They all performed excellently well and made every minutes spent worthwhile.
Side attraction of the event was a star performance by renowned rap king and home boy, Dandizzy who literally set the arena on fire with some of his captivating rap songs. Dandizzy, who hails from Opobo kingdom, was almost mobbed by enthusiastic fans but for the intervention of security officials.
Recall that the GDI, Rivers PDP election engine organization, had kicked off their project in the state in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, code named operation Go and Collect Your PVC for winning 2023 elections in the state.
They had embarked on deeper sensitization and mobilization of its grassroots supporters for the party to retain power come 2023 general elections.
National Network captured all personalities and groups as they made solidarity speeches at the epoch-making ceremony.