– By Johnson Ebigide
The Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly (DTHA), Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori, has commended the council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in the state for complementing the positive transformation of the state by the state government.
The speaker gave the commendation when the Chairman of the union in the state, Comrade Michael Ikeogwu, led other members of the council in a courtesy visit to his office in Asaba, the state capital.
Rt. Hon. Oborevwori noted that journalists in the state were part of the success story of the Okowa Administration, adding that their fair reportage of the policy thrust and programmes of the state government had fast tracked the monumental transformation of the state government under the watch of Governor Okowa.
He maintained that there was the need to continue to maintain the cordiality among the three arms of government and the Forth Estate of the Realm in the state so as to attract greater dividends of democracy to the people as espoused by state government, adding that journalists should endeavour to report issues correctly and shun the pull to publicize fake news for whatever reasons.
The speaker disclosed that the bill on open grazing had gone through advanced stages in the House, including a pubic hearing on it, adding that it would soon be passed for the assent of the state governor to become law in the state.
He congratulated Comrade Ikeogwu and members of his council for their victory at the election that brought them in last year, adding that the COVID-19 Pandemic had made his granting of audience to the council impossible before now, just as he promised to partner with the union towards the actualisation of the Stronger Delta vision of the state government.
Earlier in an address, Comrade Ikeogwu had thanked the speaker for the warm reception accorded him and other members of the council, saying that the visit was a belated familiarisation to the speaker owing to the COVID-19 Pandemic in the state.
He commended the speaker and other members of the House for the robust working relationship between the legislature and the executive arm of government in the state, adding that the House had been adjudged to be the best in the country, just as he implored him to continue to synergize with his media crew and other journalists in the state.
The labour leader stated that the union in the state was not at war with the state government as being maliciously peddled in some quarters, adding that it was the constitutional role of the union to make those in government accountable to the people by constructively criticising any likely policy lapses that could threaten the general wellbeing of the governed.
While calling on the House to accelerate the passage of the bill on open grazing before it, Comrade Ikeogwu opined that open grazing had endangered the livelihood of the people in the state, just as he reiterated the need for continuous partnership with the House to complement the strong determination of the Okowa Administration to leave lasting legacies in the state.
Present during the visit were the Deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon. Ochor Christopher Ochor, some principal officers of the House, the Vice Chairman of the council, Comrade Salvation Ogono, other members of the council and some very senior journalists in the state, including Comrade Festus Ahon of the Vanguard Newspapers, among others.