Speaking at a colourful ceremony in Asaba on 01/10/16, to mark Nigeria’s annual independence celebration, the governor stated, “we should be proud to be Nigerians.”
“God in His infinite wisdom did not make a mistake in His decision to plant us in Nigeria as Nigerians,” Senator Okowa said, asserting, “today (yesterday) is a day to celebrate the free spirit of Nigeria; we should be gratified to be part of such a glorious state and great nation; let us pay tribute to our countrymen and women who sacrificed so that we can celebrate this day; we should never forget their sacrifices.”
While conceding that the journey has not been easy for the country witnessing economic and political setbacks; bloodletting occasioned by misguided religious extremists, Governor Okowa asserted, “it is important we remain strong, exercise patience and be of good faith at this critical period of economic challenges.”
He emphasized, “fellow Deltans, militancy and vandalism are not the solution to our developmental problems, I urge our youths to lay down their arms as all hands should be on deck to bring our country out of the current economic doldrums; we should all abide by the tenets of our religion and pray for God’s grace on our nation because, all religions preach peace, love, charity and holiness.”
Governor Okowa used the occasion to thank Deltans for their support and cooperation for his administration and used the occasion to urge them to pray for the state, the nation and as “law-abiding and hardworking citizens, to back to the land for agriculture.”
“We cannot continue to depend on oil; agriculture has proved to be a very sustainable venture that we can engage to revive the economy,” he reiterated.
The celebration featured match past by military, para-military organizations including, students of secondary schools and other civil organizations.