Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Delta, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, on Thursday said Governor Ifeanyi Okowa’s performance in the state in the last seven years had been widely acknowledged as impressive contrary to criticism in some quarters.
Indeed, Ifeajika, who spoke as a guest on “Bridge Parliament” programme on Bridge Radio, Asaba, described the governor’s delivery of democratic dividends to people of the state as “superlative’’.
According to him, prior to his emergence as governor, Okowa promised to give prosperity to all Deltans and he has since delivered on that, with thousands of youths engaged in entrepreneurship endeavours and doing well.
He said that OKowa’s administration deliberately set up multiple empowerment programmes to make youths self-reliant and employers of labour.
Ifeajika recalled that when the governor assumed office in 2015, there was crave for white collar jobs, with everyone pushing to be in government employment.
“But, the openings in government work were few and have remained so across the country. So, the governor decided to give serious attention to self-employment schemes, empowering the younger persons to fend for themselves, and seven years after, the testimonies are out there.
“And as it stands today, no fewer than 128,000 youths have been taken out of the streets as a result of the various job-creation programmes,’’ he said.
On flooding in Asaba, the spokesman said that Okowa had tackled the menace by embarking on storm water drainage projects in the capital territory, adding that more flood control measures were being undertaken to totally eradicate the problem.
He stressed that with the success recorded in Asaba, the state government had moved to replicate the same feat in the twin cities of Warri and Effurun, and urged residents of the areas to be patient with government as it addressed the flood menace.
“The Asaba storm water project is an audacious project embarked upon by the Okowa-administration and because it was successful in Asaba, it has been replicated now in Warri and Uvwie areas and it’s being done in two phases.’’
On road construction, he scored his boss high, saying “for the first time in the state, a government, incidentally, one headed by Senator Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, took road development to the creeks where nobody thought it was possible to do so.
“He did it believing that the oil we have in the state comes from that part. Over 20.28km of road linking Obotebe 1 & 2 through to Yokri, Sokebulou and Ogulagha, all inside the Atlantic Ocean has been constructed.
“Okowa’s government did it and today they are grateful to him for that gesture.
“From 2015 to date, the Okowa administration has constructed no fewer than 1,995 kilometres of road and no fewer than 1,000 kilometres of drains and culverts and we are still counting because up till May 28, 2023, roads will still be constructed and inaugurated.
“The flagship of all the projects is the Prof. Chike Edozien Secretariat. It is a wonder in the whole of Africa and when Vice President Yemi Osinbajo came to inaugurate the project, he was surprised that such a magnificent project could be executed in Delta.’’
On completion of ongoing projects, Ifeajika assured that the Koka Flyover and Interchange would be completed this year, adding that it would certainly be delivered before the administration would wind up.
“For any project embarked upon by this administration, there is a projection for completion; we don’t have the plan of leaving any project uncompleted,”
On the implementation of the anti-open grazing law in the state, the governor’s spokesman said that efforts were being made by the Implementation Committee to operationalise the law.
Ifeajika also said that state police was the way to go as measure to curb current insecurity plaguing the nation, and therefore urged the Federal Government to expedite action in that regard.
GOVT. HOUSE, ASABA