The people of Ogoni ethnic nationality have concluded plans to organise a grand reception in honour of Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, over his positive impacts on Ogoni development through the execution of people-oriented and quality projects in the area.
President of the foremost socio-cultural organisation in Ogoni, KAGOTE, Rt. Hon. Emmanuel Deeyah, disclosed this during a sensitisation meeting with Ogoni stakeholders at Saakpenwa, headquarters of Tai LGA in the state.
Addressing stakeholders from Khana, Gokana, Tai and Eleme LGAs, who attended the meeting, Deeyah said the reception for the Rivers State governor would hold on May 15, 2021 at State School 11, Bori, headquarters of the Ogoni people.
Deeyah said the reception for the governor was not at the instance of KAGOTE alone but the collective resolve of all Ogoni stakeholders, irrespective of partisan concern, to appreciate the governor for his developmental projects in the area, particularly the conclusion of the first phase and awarding of contract for the second phase of the Saakpenwa-Bori-Kono Road.
The KAGOTE president hinted that 10,000 Ogonis would be mobilised from the four LGAs to honour the governor.
Also speaking, the Chairman of Mobilization Committee, Hon Fred Kpakol, said the reception was to thank the governor for his commitment towards the development of Ogoni through the execution of quality and people-oriented projects in the area.
Kpakol, who is also the commissioner for Agriculture in the state, urged all Ogoni stakeholders; traditional rulers, religious leaders, youth, women and political leaders to turnout en-mass to honour the governor.
In his remarks, Traditional Ruler in Ogoni, Meene Suanu T.Y. Baridam, said that Wike would be conferred with a chieftaincy title by the Supreme Council of Ogoni Traditional Rulers as a mark of gratitude for his developmental strides in Rivers State, and Ogoni in particular.
Meanwhile, stakeholders at the first Pan-Ogoni Petroleum Summit, organised by the Pan-Ogoni International Magazine, have urged the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on the development of Ogoni as, “an expedient and responsive measure towards addressing the infrastructural and human development deficits in the area despite the enormous contributions of the people to the nation’s economic fortune”.
The stakeholders reasoned that, “lOCs were yet to respond to the demands of the Ogoni people in terms of economic, political and environmental rights, which are the fundamentals of the Ogoni struggle”.
The stakeholders also cautioned against, “unbridled incursions of violence in the Ogoni, which has desecrated communities”, and called on government and relevant stakeholders to address the insecurity in the area.
The participants at the summit also urged Ogonis to be resolute, united and vigilant against infiltrative forces that benefit from the insecurity in the area.
The stakeholders’ resolutions, among several others, were contained in a statement made available to newsmen after the summit.
Earlier, the Chairman of the Board of Pan-Ogoni International Magazine, Engr Olu Andah Wai-Ogosu, had in his welcome address declared that the summit was a platform to rouse the sensibilities of Ogoni people, and by extension, the Niger Delta to the dynamics of the oil politics in terms of enhancement of indigenous participation through the issuance of operational licenses to the people to become key players in the oil and gas sector, especially now that there is global paradigm shift from oil and gas to renewable energy.
The chairman called for the review of the entire oil and gas sector to “reflect the prospective realities of the Local Content Act, which endorses the active mobilisation of indigenous content and royalties as fundamental principles in the oil economy.
Speaking, the Chairman of the summit, Senator Bennett Birabi, declared the summit as “apt and pivotal for alerting the Ogoni people to redefine their development objectives and key into the dynamics and vigilance of the global energy shift”.
Birabi said the politics of petroleum in Ogoni had brought “agony, bitterness, strife, anger and aggression, spanning through decades of unpacified struggles and Ogonis have suffered severe brunt”.
The former Senate minority leader commended the organisers of the summit, and stated that, “the conversation is very necessary to affect the course of history positively by changing the ugly narrative that makes Ogoni the hub of the oil and gas sector and the metaphor of brutish human struggles”.
By: Taneh Beemene
Insecurity Hasn’t Hindered Projects’ Execution In Rivers, Wike Affirms
The Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike says that his administration has fearlessly tackled insecurity headlong and created an enabling climate for smooth delivery of quality development projects.
Wike made the assertion at the inauguration of 16.2-kilometre long Omueze-Umuogba-Umuokpurukpu-Umueke-Umunju-Eberi Road project in Omuma Local Government Area of the state, yesterday.
The governor noted that while other states of the country were still struggling with issues of insecurity, Rivers State was witnessing harvest of development projects with the non-stop inauguration and flag-off ceremonies to their amazement.
“Don’t fight anybody that God has blessed. Don’t fight the state that God has blessed. People are talking about insecurity. We are talking about commissioning and flagging-off of projects. Is it easy? If it is easy, let them try it.”
Wike asserted that it is only states controlled by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) like Rivers that has created a peaceful climate for the citizens while the government delivers democratic dividends.
“Those who say they don’t like what PDP is doing, they have no choice but to like it. You can see what the party (PDP) is doing. We are flagging-off and commissioning projects. Whether they like it or not, we are in charge.”
The governor said it is obvious that Rivers State is no longer on the same level with states that cannot provide dividend of democracy to their people.
Wike said the performance of his administration has restored confidence in Rivers people and they can walk with their heads raised high.
“Rivers people, are you not proud of your state? If you’re a Rivers man, anywhere you go, raise your shoulder high and say that you’re a Rivers man and woman. “They (other parties) can only jealous us, but they cannot do anything. We are of different class. We are not on the same level with them.”
Speaking further, Wike commended the member representing Omuma State Constituency, Hon. KelechiNwogufor his loyalty to PDP.
He also extolled him for his commitment to the welfare of Omuma people and being a trusted ally to him.
At the behest of Nwogu, Wike promised Omuma people that his administration would reconstruct the Umuakali-Eberi Road in appreciation of their support to the PDP.
Inaugurating the project, former President of the Senate, Senator Adolphus Wabara, noted how Wike has redefined governance and broken the jinx of non-performance associated with second tenure governors.
According to him, the approach to development that the governor has adopted stands him out as a much sought-after leader who should be consulted in solving critical national issues related to governance.
“With my experience in elective politics, second terms of most governors are dull; some governors will just go to sleep because they don’t have anything to offer. But you are still commissioning projects, as if you’re not even going to leave.
“Your developmental approach, your developmental plans, and formula should make you an international consultant to the failing government. Because, quite frankly, the magic, I mean, nobody knows except you. You do it with ease, you do it with happiness.”
Providing the description of the project, Rivers State Commissioner for Works, EllokaTasie-Amadi said the Omueze-Umuogba-Umuokpurukpu-Umueke-Umunju-Eberi link road in Omuma Local Government Area was another genuine efforts of the Wike administration to ease the transportation difficulties experienced by rural dwellers in the Omuma.
“Many of these rural projects go unsung probably because the residents are not social media savvy, as in the case of Omuma, who are predominantly farmers, or probably because SM activities are not a part of their past times as it is with city dwellers.
“It may shock you to know that for every kilometre of road we have built in the city we have built 12kms or more in the rural areas. This is a conservative estimate I would like you to ponder upon when you get home.”
He further stated, “This project is a 16.2km long, 10.3m wide road project which has 4.3km of drains. The roads are marked and have a total of 27 road signs to aid driving and enhance public safety.”
Wike Flags Off Abonnema/ Obonoma Sandfilling Project, Today
All is now set for the flag-off of the Abonnema/Obonoma Sandfilling project in Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State.
A statement signed by the state Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, yesterday, said that, “the project will sandfill 42 hectares of land that will help expand Abonnema and Obonoma Towns.
“It is in fulfilment of the promise made by Governor Nyesom Wike during the commissioning of the Abonnema Ring Road”.
The statement further added that, “The rich culture and tradition of the Kalabaris will be fully on display at the event.
“Please, note that all Covid-19 protocols will be observed at the event”, it stressed.
Wike, Building Strong Foundation For Rivers Transformation, SSG Confirms
The Secretary to the Rivers State Government, Dr Tammy Danagogo, has re-emphasised that Governor Nyesom Wike’s resolution in the delivery of meaningful projects was to establish a strong foundation for the transformation of the state.
Danagogo observed that the ceaseless commissioning of projects and the commencement of the Phase 1 of Trans-Kalabari Link Road construction, as well as the Abonnema/Obonoma Sandsfilling/ Land Reclamation were clear demonstration of the governor’s doggedness to ensure that all sectors of the state and the LGAs were positively affected by the new economic windows that such infrastructures would deliver.
Speaking in Port Harcourt, yesterday, Danagogo lauded Wike for always fulfilling his promises to the people, and positively taking on policies that were beneficial to the development of the state.
The SSG maintained that the construction of the Trans-Kalabari Link Road further underscores the governor’s love for the people of Kalabari Kingdom and the demonstration of his character as a promise keeper.
“As a landmark project, the governor is aware of the diverse economic windows the development of the Trans-Kalabari Link Road will create for the people, and as well enhance the rural-urban interconnection that this government is promoting.
“The potential benefits of sandfilling Abonnema/Obonoma, and the Trans Kalabari Road construction is enormous. The various links and proximity to the state capital, Port Harcourt, is unique as more economic windows can be explored in the areas of housing, agriculture, transportation and other businesses.”
He added that the segmentation policy of the construction was good for the quick completion and delivery of the projects.
“I urge the Kalabari people to always work with the NEW Rivers Vision administration. The governor means well for the economic prosperity of all Rivers people.
“We can recall that the previous government abandoned the project for unexplainable reasons. Now, irrespective of the present economic challenges bedevilling the federation, the governor has embarked on the construction of the phase one of Trans-Kalabari Link Road.
“I encourage the Kalabari people to be open-minded, receptive of this historic development, and enjoy its benefits,” he further added.
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