Keniebi Okoko’s death shocked me – Governor Diri

Douye Diri

Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri, has said that he received the news of the sudden demise of Pastor Keniebi Okoko with great shock and pain.

Describing the late 42-year-old Okoko as an Ijaw icon, pillar and astute businessman, Diri said on Thursday that Bayelsa, the Ijaw nation and Nigeria had lost a man with great potential.

Keniebi, son of former President of the Ijaw National Congress (INC) and former lecturer at the University of Port Harcourt, Prof. Kimse Okoko, died on Tuesday at a private hospital in Lagos.

The governor commiserated with his family, aged parents, the Obunagha community of Gbarain Clan in Yenagoa Local Government Area of the state.

Diri recalled how Okoko was a co-contestant in the September 4, 2019 governorship primary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and made an impressive showing.

“As a fellow aspirant in the course of the PDP governorship primary, I got to know him quite well, he said in a statement by his Acting Chief Press Secretary, Mr Daniel Alabrah,” he said.

“He always presented himself as a patriotic, intelligent, gentlemanly, courteous and devoted Christian. He was always passionate about the prosperity of our state.

“I was therefore not surprised when I emerged winner of the primary election, Keniebi showed great sportsmanship by immediately congratulating me and collapsing his political structure into mine and worked energetically to ensure our victory.”

He noted that Okoko’s death was a huge loss to the PDP family in Bayelsa, coming at a time the party had great hopes in him to further the frontiers of development of the state.

Diri prayed God to comfort and grant his parents and immediate family the grace to bear this painful loss.