The Governor of Delta State, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, has attributed the success recorded by his administration to the peaceful co-existence of different ethnic groups in the state.
This is even as ethnic nationalities in the state have made a case for the return of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) to Warri.
Speaking on Friday at the 87th annual national congress and award of honours of Urhobo Progress Union (UPU) at Effurun, Uvwie local government area of Delta State, the governor noted that the peace and unity that existed among the different ethnic nationalities in the state had contributed greatly to the success story of his administration.
According to Okowa, “if there is division in any of the ethnic nationalities, there will be problem and as long as each of the ethnic nationalities are at peace with themselves, it will be easy for government to manage its affairs; these have helped us to carry out development projects without distractions.”
While calling on the ethnic nationalities to continue to live in peace, the governor observed that the SPDC would listen to the call of different ethnic nationalities to relocate back to Warri which would not only contribute to the economy of the people but, that of the state.
“We are committed to developing the economy of our people through the provision of jobs because, if the economy of our people grow, we will grow the economy of our state, our people believe that with the return of Shell to Warri, our economy will boom again,” he said.
He also spoke on restructuring of the country saying, “the battle for restructuring was led by our leader, Chief James Ibori more than a decade ago; and what he saw then is now being echoed by others. Delta State will continue to be a voice of reasoning for the Nigerian nation and I thank the Urhobos for their stand on restructuring. The Urhobos have added their voice because, we do know that Nigeria will be a better place with restructuring, it will bring about healthy competition among the people which will be good for the nation.”
The governor who enthused about the success of his administration commended the unity that existed among the Urhobos, observing that his administration was about to achieve a lot in the delivery of dividends of democracy due to the peace that exists among different ethnic nationalities in the state.
He assured that his administration would do more.
The governor who was accompanied to the occasion by political aides stated, “there is no doubt that the UPU is a very strong union, it is an embodiment of strength of the Urhobo people and I want to thank the leadership of UPU for keeping faith with the ideals of the founding fathers of the UPU; it is good that you have respect for the traditional rulers and I must appreciate the traditional rulers who have come together to ensure that there is no division in the UPU.”
He also urged politicians to avoid actions that would cause disaffection or lead to destruction ahead of the 2019 general elections.
He urged candidates to woo the people with their programmes and work towards free, fair and acceptable elections which would reposition Nigeria among the comity of nations.
Former Governor James Ibori at the occasion, commended the President-General of UPU, Olorogun Moses Taiga “for the work he has done in the last four years and I thank the traditional rulers for working for the unity of Urhobo land. The people should consider the overall interest of the Urhobo nation at all times. As we continue to ask our Governor to do more for us, we must keep the peace which is necessary for development to take place.
Chief Ibori noted that it was a good development that different ethnic groups and concerned individuals were lending their voice to the call on SPDC to return to Warri, asserting that “Shell will make Warri boom again.”