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The late Tony Grey asked me to take him to Prophet T.B Joshua — Delta State PMAN Governor

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Evangelist Comrade Quincy Uruemuesiri Tebite aka Tisio. Tisio is the Governor of Performing Musician Association of Nigeria, PMAN, Delta State Chapter. In this exclusive interview with Gab Ejuwa, he speaks on the death of veteran music icon, Tony Grey, the crisis rocking the Delta State chapter of PMAN, the need for peace among others. Excerpts:

By Gab Ejuwa

Sir, how do you run the affairs of the Delta state chapter of PMAN?

At the state level, we have what we call zones, it could be likened to units or local governments but within the associations we call it zone and in Delta State we have zones in order to reach out to the grassroots. We don’t operate from the central alone.


How many zones do you have in Delta State and what are the requirements or what does it take for a zone to exit?

In Delta State, we have ten zones. Although, some of the zones created by my predecessor are not meeting up with the requirements because as a zone, there are some remittance to the central body, which is the state executive. Also, there are some basic monies that ought to be paid at the time of inauguration but since I assumed office, none of those zones have made the requirements, and for that, they ceased to exist pending when they redeem all they owe, financially. For now, we have Warri, Ughelli, Sapele, Isoko, Ika, Ndokwa 1, which is Obiaruku, Umutu, Ndokwa East, Ndokwa West which was created out of Ndokwa 1, in it we have the Kwale axis, and we also have the Oshimili zone which was created from Ika by my predecessor, Emma Grey, the Abavo zone and Isele-uku zone created from Oshimili. But as it is, Isele-uku and Abavo zones are like small segments that ought not to be zones but because of agitation, they were created and as long as they were created, they must exist.

Some people say a vote of no confidence was passed on the present exco you head and as the PMAN governor, how will you react to that?

There was never a time a vote of no confidence was passed on my administration. It is only zonal and state executives that have the right to pass a vote of no confidence and not two or three persons. But I can say that petitions were written by some few individuals in the state executive and some in Warri. Warri is a zone out of the 9 or 10 zones in the state, so a few persons under Warri cannot come out to say that a vote of no confidence was passed. So when majority say this is what we want, minority cannot say no. The few persons within Warri as I came to find out with brother Emma Grey, said I want to move the headquarters from Warri and in my campaigns without mincing words, I said, there is no need to deceive ourselves, this is Delta State and the capital is in Asaba and for us as a body to get it well and be close to the corridors of power of government, it was good to have our headquarters there and it was unanimously agreed that it should be in Asaba.

One of your veterans and the founder of PMAN, Tony Grey just passed on. As the PMAN governor of Delta State, a lot of appeal were made on the pages of newspapers to government for help, while he was still alive but it was only one NGO headed by Sunny Onosueke that supported him with over half a million naira. Kindly tell us the role PMAN played while he was alive and why did the government of Delta State refused to support him before he  died?

Thank you very much on this issue of our legend veteran Music General, Tony Grey of blessed memory as I would say with pains. Left for me, I would have wished him to live longer than he did. If there is one man that the veteran Music General, Tony Grey showed love to till his death,  I will tell you it’s me. He supported me from day one. Even when his younger brother was against me, he stood by me and that was why he attended our inauguration at Asaba and he performed at the concert tagged “Delta Beyond Oil”. He performed live. We have the video clips and he has always told me, `don’t worry, I am behind you, Tisio’. It is unfortunate that he has given up, (in sober mood) now, like you rightly said, while he was sick, he told me in confidence and he even made it open that he would have love me to take him to Synagogue Church of All Nations to meet with Senior Prophet T.B Joshua and I told him that the process of travelling here and there and as at then he was still walking and I told him that it would take a lot, so he should be prepared. He would tell me with his mouth that he was ready but he never made any move.

But as it were, while he was at the hospital, the house was already divided and we were handicapped and in our own little way, we did visit him at the hospital and did the little we could as a Union despite the fact that financially the Union was handicapped. While doing that we were pursuing the government on how to reach the governor and I met the governor at the Owhorode of Olomu centenary celebration at Olomu and I spoke with him one on one and it was there I made it known to him that his friend Tony Grey was ill and he shouted and asked me to tell him the type of sickness and I told him and he said okay, I should send a text to him, he asked me if I had his number and I said no, he then directed his ADC to give me his contact, after that I sent the text as requested and in my phone, it showed delivered but I don’t know if he received it because he never replied.

I also wrote a formal letter with pictures of General Tony Grey. I went to the Commissioner of Culture and Tourism and he advised that such letter should go to the governor directly, and in one of the governor’s visits to Warri on inspection, I was able to meet with the Director of Protocols and the President was also able to reach out to the governor whom he  gave an appointment to see him and the President beckoned on me to come with him but unfortunately on getting to the Government House, I was not allowed to see the governor because the appointment was for the President to see him alone but the privilege I have then was for me to drop the letter with the Director of Protocols which I did.

Two letters I dropped, one was an appeal to the government to intervene in the situation to see how he could be flown abroad for surgery . This is a veteran who had paid his dues for Deltans in the music industry from the time of Bendel State and he has made a name even before any of us and the people in government. In that letter, PMAN made their point clear by giving two options either they fly him abroad or they should make available the equivalent of N12 million that was needed to do a surgery on him.

It was just on Wednesday before his death that I received a text message from the Ministry of Health, asking me to get in touch with his family, requesting for the certificate of local government of origin, the cost of treatment in the hospital where he was and then the referral letter from the attending hospital. And as a follow up to the text, the man who sent the text called me on Thursday and then told me to get the requirement for the government to step in. So, on Friday, I and my executive members hit the road to General Tony Grey’s house to meet with the family and asked them to provide all the necessary documents needed. And the family told us that by Monday they will provide them but unfortunately, the sad news of his death got to us on Monday. As at the time of his death the family was still owing almost N2 million.

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