It was a display of unity yesterday (25/08/16) as different cultural groups from the 25 LGAs in Delta State rolled out in a colourful parade, to join a throng of Deltans in celebration of 25 years of the existence of Delta state in Asaba, the Delta state capital.
The cultural parade, which was part of events lined up to celebrate the 25 years anniversary of the creation of Delta State, formally took off from the newly re-designed inter-bau round-about, which had been given a scenic face-lift just in time to commemorate the 25th celebrations, finally converged at the Cenotaph parade ground in the state capital, where thousands of Deltans and well wishers were waiting in excited anticipation to witness the sounds and colours of Delta’s cultural heritage.
Speaking at the occasion, Governor Okowa, who was decked out in the traditional Anioma attire befitting the occasion, who described the event as, ‘A Delta of 1,000 dances’ hailed Deltans and well wishers for turning out enmasse in their colourful splendor to partake and participate in the cultural celebrations despite the present harsh economic situation, even as he promised that the difficulties would soon be over.
Governor Okowa, who disclosed that the events for the anniversary, which started with a Childres party organized by the first Lady of the state, Dame Edith Okowa, on Wednessday (24/08/16) and would also feature an economic and investment summit, as the main programme of the celebrations, were wholly sponsored by the private sector.
Okow said: “At 25 years, there is every reason to celebrate Delta State. One thing that I know is that Delta is a land of peace, a land where love flows; though, tongue may differ, we are united and with what I have seen this afternoon, I am convinced that I am leading a set of people with a strong will to succeed. We are on a progressive part,” the governor said.
Speaking further, Governor Okowa observed that, “there is hunger out there but there is hope for tomorrow. Be prayerful, pray for our state and our country, we need to embrace peace and ensure that that peace is sustained, we need to return to the good old days when Delta was the greatest producer of oil and gas in the country.”
Thrilled by the display of culture at the occasion which was attended by traditional rulers, leaders of thoughts including former Military Administrator of the state, Air Commodore Luke Ochulor (rtd), Governor Okowa said, the state would organize a cultural extravaganza that will last for three days which will attract people from different parts of the world at a later date.
“The unity that I saw here today is more than enough to make us a great state,” the governor reiterated, disclosing that as part of efforts to diversify the economy of the state, his administration was encouraging Deltans through empowerment programmes to return to agriculture.
He said, “it is time for us to return to the agricultural sector, we will stimulate our people to have better farms, we will continue to consistently support our farmers through Farmers Support Programme, Youth Agricultural Entrepreneur Programme and others to enable them succeed”.
Those who spoke at the occasion, including the Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Barr, Ernest Ogwezzy, the Commissioner for Information, Mr Patrick Ukah, traditional rulers, politicians, among others commended Governor Okowa for his commitment to a peaceful and progressive Delta State.
The occasion featured cultural parade along major streets of Asaba which culminated in display of different dances and cultural display at the cenotaph, as well as musical performances by Barrister Smooth from Delta South, Chief Solomon from Delta Central and Ogbogwu from Delta North.