Rivers State Governor, Barr. Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has reassured the people of the state that his administration will remain resolute and devoted to deliver on every project it has embarked on.
A report by Juliana Masi, Press Officer in the Office of the Secretary to the Rivers State Government, disclosed that the assurance was given when a delegation of the KENGEMA KOBIRI FORUM of Kalabari kingdom paid a visit on Tuesday to thank the Governor for the award of the Trans-Kalabari Road Project.
The Secretary to the State Government – Dr. Tammy Wenike Danagogo who received them on behalf of His Excellency urged the members of the Kengema Kobiri Forum to resist sitting on the fence on issues that concern the future of the State and Kalabari Kingdom as such attitude can create vacuum for unscrupulous characters to speak for them.
He maintained that Kalabari Kingdom is populated with the right kind of persons who can constructively speak on issues that affect the progress and growth of Rivers State and Kalabari as an ethnic nationality; noting that the world will always misinterpret the Kalabari man if only unscrupulous and self-seeking individuals are those being heard.
“It is important to be grateful when the government does good and constructively criticise and advise the government when it does wrong. If the kind of persons present here today had been doing that since the inception of democracy in 1999 the progress and development of Kalabari would have tripled.
“The land of Kalabari is vastly blessed with professors, PhD holders, Bishops, lawyers, doctors Intellectuals, business tycoons, Chiefs etc who should be the touch bearers, voice for the collective interest of Kalabari and those whom our children should look up to. The picture of Kalabari had always been that of honour and glory in every chosen career we undertake. This is the kind of pedigree we must continue to foster for our younger generation.
“A young man we all know who kidnapped the wife of our respected chief. Someone who made his money from kidnapping and illegal oil bunkering should never be allowed to be the voice of our dear kingdom. Such a voice can only lead to destruction,” he emphasized.
He enjoined them to speak out and not take the backseat for fear of being insulted, attacked or kidnapped by him and his cohorts , stating that it takes courage to lead your people to glory, and ‘what it takes for evil to thrive is for good people to keep quiet’.
On the Trans-Kalabari Road construction, he extoled the Governors doggedness and strategy to ensure the delivery of the project through the segmentation policy, noting that same approach has been successful in the construction of the Bori-Sakpenwa road.
Earlier, the Kengema Kobiri Co-Chairman and Representative of Degema Local Government Area, Prof. Victor O. T. Omuaru, thanked the Governor for fulfilling his promise to begin construction of the Trans- Kalabari Road for the people of Kalabari even after about two decades when the road was first awarded.
“For us in the three Kalabari LGAs, we consider ourselves particularly lucky as we can mention numerous projects of your administration in our communities some of which are legacy projects like the completion of Abonnema Ring Road, the on-going construction of the Degema Zonal Hospital and now, the approval for the take-off of the all-important trans- kalabari road.
“Your Excellency, you rekindled our dashed hope when you assured the Kalabari people during a meeting with us in Government House, that you are going to commence the first phase of the project. Today, you have not just fulfilled your promise of commencing this landmark project, but you equally approved an unprecedented N13.43bn, the highest amount ever approved for a single project in Kalabari land by any administration since the creation of Rivers State. To further demonstrate your commitment to the timely completion of the project, you also approved an irrevocable Standing Payment Order of N1bn monthly. How else can a leader demonstrate his love for his people! All we can say is thank you Your Excellency and May the Almighty God continue to endow you with wisdom to lead Rivers people”, he said.
The meeting also had in attendance the Co-Chairman ASALGA , Chief (Barr.) Otonye T. K. D. Amachree, the Co-Chairman AKULGA Chief Prof. Felix J. K. Ideriah, the Permanent Secretary, Special Service Bureau of the SSGs Office, Dr. George C. Nwaeke mni and other prominent kalabari sons and daughters.
The Kengema Kobiri Unity Forum is the body that houses all socio-political organizations in the Kalabari kingdom.