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Jailbird James: caged but free to run things

Jailbird James Ibori still in charge of Delta State

We have been reliably informed that the new governor of Delta State Ifeanyi Okowa was in London recently to visit James Ibori in Wandsworth Prison.

Ibori, a two-term governor of Delta State, was jailed in Southwark Crown Court for 13 years for fraud and money laundering in 2012.

Despite his incarceration, like a typical Mafiosi, Ibori is still directing his criminal enterprise from his prison cell. Emmanuel Uduaghan, the last governor of Delta State, is Ibori’s cousin and is alleged to have paid a fraction of the state’s monthly allocation to his “godfather”.

Ibori was also influential, through his money and contacts, in the nomination and eventual (s)election of the new governor Okowa.

Delta State governor Ifeanyi Okowa
Delta State governor Ifeanyi Okowa

The new governor visited Ibori in jail immediately after he won and has been to see the jailbird again for further “consultation”.

Ibori is expected to have a big say in who gets what in the governor’s cabinet. It remains to be seen whether the previous financial arrangements with Uduaghan will continue.

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