Many thanks to Heritage-Plus, the organizers of the Garden City Advancement Award and to everyone who considered me worthy of the honor as the Rivers Man of the year 2021.
Our society needs the blessings of God Almighty which I believe is far more accommodating than the reach of man! As individuals, we can only do the much we can.
Society has to be restructured to reverse the trend in which there are very many poor people, very many unemployed youth.
Our country is very rich in natural resources and the question is: Why are our people so poor? Is it because the people that control the country’s wealth have their eyes high up there?
The focus of governance should be on the grassroots, the ordinary people, the local communities. We need to reverse the condition where the country and the state are rich but our people are poor; where the government and companies are rich but their hosts are poor.
We need governance to be about the ordinary people of Rivers State – the people of Ahoada, the people of Bonny, the people of Obio-Akpor, the people of Khana, etc. What we have today is politics for township people, politics for the rich and super rich, politics for those who only want to take for themselves from the public coffers and keep the ordinary people perpetually impoverished.
Leadership should be about the local communities, about truth, not frills.
Governance should make the ordinary man and woman the start point of all developmental policies, strategies and action plans.
Political power should be put in the hands of the people. The people should be empowered to determine how politics is played; empowered to influence and benefit from the deployment of state resources. Political influence should be deliberately given to the local communities, we should take political power and influence from the ‘big oga dem’ and put in the hands of the ordinary people.
Politics should be about the people and the dividends of democracy should benefit everyone. Governance must be inclusive, the governor should only be a primus inter pares. Differences of opinion should not be construed as a declaration of enmity.
May God Almighty help our leaders to deliver, liberate and bless our state and country.
Thank you for this recognition and God bless you all.