Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, said history would be kind to his Delta counterpart Sen. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, whose tenure as Governor would end on May 29, 2023.
He said that no matter what people thought about the Okowa administration, history had recorded the massive achievements of the Governor while in the saddle for eight years.
Obaseki spoke at a valedictory dinner held for the outgoing governor and his deputy, Mr Kingsley Otuaro, at the Events Centre in Asaba on Sunday night.
He described Okowa as a unifier who had ensured that Edo and Delta remained united and for supporting the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to victory in the 2021 Governorship election in the state.
“I am here to celebrate and thank God for the life of our own Chairman because he is the Chairman of the South-South Governors Forum.
“I want to thank God that you have kept the tradition, you have played your own part, you have run your own session of the race. You inherited a Delta that is PDP and you are handing on a Delta that is PDP to your successor.
“You have done your part and that’s all you can do and we thank God for your wife and family that have been a pillar of support all through these eight years.
“People will have their own versions of history but history is history and history has recorded what you have achieved for your people in Delta State.
“I congratulate you and thank God for your life that as you move to the next phase of your calling, the Lord who has seen you through will be there to support you,” he stated.
Obaseki charged the Governor-elect, Chief Sheriff Oborevwori, to brace up for the challenges ahead and wished him well as he assumes office on May 29.
On his part, Governor Okowa who was very emotional on the night, thanked Deltans for giving him and his deputy the opportunity to serve the state for eight years.
He also commended the legislature and the judiciary as well as the civil service for their contributions to his administration’s success.
“There is no doubt that we had some happy moments but we also had some challenging moments. Several challenges came our way but God was with us all through.
“God was with us and He will be with you through your tenure,” he said.
The governor apologised to the people of Ayakoromo and the Ijaw nation for his inability to complete the Ayakoromo Bridge project, but assured that he had taken steps to ensure its prompt completion in no distant time.
“I must publicly apologise for our failure to deliver the Ayakoromo bridge during my tenure.
“The previous contactor somehow slowed us down and not until last year we found out that if we needed to succeed, that contractor had to be exited from that project and we were able to talk with him and it has now been re-awarded to Setraco Nigeria Limited.
“We have done the initial phase of mobilisation which is about N2 billion but the full mobilisation ought to be about N4.1 billion
“By God’s grace, and talking with the Governor-elect, by next week we will have to pay the balance N2.1billion so that they can move on fully to the Ayakoromo Bridge and get it completed.
“I apologise and ask for patience of not only the people of Ayakoromo but all Ijaws who had felt that bridge ought to be completed. It is not our own deliberate fault, it was because of the non-performance of the contractor.
“I thank God for Levant Nigeria Limited for what I see on Sector A of the Ughelli-Asaba road. From Ughelli to Oleh to Ozoro, I can see the pace of work and I thank God that we were able to repudiate the initial contract and to reaward it to Levant Nigeria Limited,” Okowa stated.