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Lori-Ogbebor laments poor living condition of Itsekiri people

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Rita Lori-Ogbebor

• Debunks death rumour
A renowned rights activist, Rita Lori-Ogbebor, has lamented the poor living condition of the Itsekiri people.

The activist, who is the Igba of Warri, warned that the people might soon be wiped out, if nothing fast was done to remedy the situation, and ensure accountability in governance.

Speaking yesterday at a press conference in Lagos, the Itsekiri leader also refuted rumours of her death circulating in the social media.

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She said it is the evil wish of the enemies of Itsekiri kingdom who want her dead, to continue in their jobs of embezzling public funds and instilling hardship on the people.

According to her, the people must rise up and ensure that those who have ruled in the past sixteen years, bringing nothing, but shame and degradation don’t continue to do so.

She disclosed that her rumoured death was only an indication that her crusade against the illicit activities of the Itsekiri Regional Development Committee (IRDC) was yielding fruits

She said: “I am not scared, but got stronger to save my people. It is saddening that people could wish me dead but here I am, alive, strong and strengthened.

Lori-Ogbebor added that it is the “evil wish by people who want me dead, because of the struggle to drag the Warri Kingdom out of the mud and precipices to which they want us to descend. This fight is neither for me, nor my children, but the generations unborn.”

She stressed that the struggle and crusade must continue, adding: “We are in court with these people who have embezzled our money. Even at this stage where the court has frozen the accounts, these evil men have gone to open other accounts to siphon Itsekiri money. But, we have discovered these accounts and taken them to court.”

The hotelier said she is interested in a reorganised IRDC that should be managed transparently to achieve its mandate of turning around the lives of the people and the communities.

Lori-Ogbebor had instituted a suit before a Delta State High Court, Warri, against some Itsekiri leaders and Chevron over alleged diversion of funds donated by Chevron and other donors for the development of Itsekiri communities.

Also, an Abuja High Court directed the Nigeria Police Force to freeze seven accounts operated by IRDC, which contained N2.1 billion.

The accounts were frozen after which a Delta State High Court, sitting in Warri granted a similar order.


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