Rivers State @ 50

Borrowing immensely from the teachings of Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, I state that constituting one of the largest voting blocks in, and contributing about 20% of the earnings of Nigeria, Rivers State has both a special claim on Nigeria and a particular responsibility to it. Consequently, it must be strong economically, cohesive socially, robust politically and engaged nationally. To that end, governments in Rivers State must follow an approach of “participation of all, development for all”. Such democratic outlook must be the creed that animates successive administrations and the elite in our dear Rivers State.

Administrations in Rivers State must launch initiatives to generate faster and more inclusive growth, aimed at realising tangibly better lives for every Rivers man, woman and child. This entails eliminating poverty within a democratic polity on a scale unparalleled in human history. We must do so even amid a sputtering national economy and very serious security challenges locally.
While working to improve the local economy and income per head, we must embark on major increases in capital expenditure on infrastructure that have large multiplier effects on private investment.

Rivers State has tremendous social strengths, including pluralism, enduring family values, a good work ethic and others mindedness which we must consciously tend. We should work seriously on several aspects of our civic culture. We should remember that policy and lifestyle choices are key to sustainable development. In that respect we should rebirth our great tradition of inclusiveness, hospitality, conservation and respect for our environment.

There is a worry about allowing events that constitute a strong threat to our sense of a common future as a people bound together by God. This has in turn created an immense sense of urgency and expectations from governments and the elite. Inevitably, some of these expectations run ahead of us. As we celebrate Rivers [email protected], we the elite and government must remain conscious of the trust that has been placed on us by the forsaken “We the people” and we resolutely work to redeem it.

We must, as we celebrate, remember that today is indeed Children’s Day. Our children are keen observers and have an almost unerring ability to discern dissonance between our words and our actions. We must know we have no greater responsibility than to educate and prepare our young people as an essential to the development of our great State’s character, vitality and dynamism.

No less than the succces of all Rivers people and a better future for Nigeria is at stake.

Good morning Rivers State @50 and Happy Children’s Day

~ Chief Dumo Lulu-Briggs