Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta on Wednesday inaugurated a ‘SMART Delta Farmers Market’, Abraka in Asaba.
The governor, represented by the Commissioner for Power and Energy, Mr Basil Ganagana, said that the market would serve as a central point for the selling of farm produce in Asaba, the state capital.
He said the market was a brain child of the Delta State Capital Territory Development Agency to transform the environment for business activities to thrive.
He said the market is a beauty to the Abraka area of Asaba.
Okowa also inaugurated the Abraka Garden and the new motor park, saying that the projects were clear indications that a transformed environment through urban renewal was on course.
He lauded the Director General of the Agency, Mrs Onyemaechi Mrakpor for turning dump sites into recreational and business centres.
In his remarks, the Commissioner for Information, Mr Charles Aniagwu said that the food stands, the garden and the park would provide employment opportunities and expand the frontiers of business activities in Asaba.
He said that the giant strides of Mrakpor and her team in the Agency had positively given a new look to the metropolitan city of Asaba and its environs.
Earlier, Mrakpor, said that the new market was part of efforts to establish a spot where people could go and buy foodstuffs such as rice, beans, yams and fruits on the road rather than the conventional market.
According to her, the facility has a borehole and water system toilet with a wash hand basin.
Mrakpor pledged, on behalf of his team, to redouble efforts in the state government’s urban renewal drive.
Edited By: Chidi Opara (NAN)
NDDC probe: Uduaghan dismisses reported N429m road contract allegation
Former Delta Governor, Dr Emmanuel, on Monday said the allegation linking him with a Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) road contract in Port Harcourt, Rivers, was false.
Uduaghan in statement in Warri which was signed by his media assistant, Monoyo Edon, urged the public to disregard the allegation as reported by the media on Monday.
According to the media report, the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, had in a letter linked two former Delta governors, James Ibori and Uduaghan, to various contracts awarded by the commission.
The letter was said to have been addressed to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.
Uduaghan, an All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain in Delta, said he had reached out to the minister to immediately correct the falsehood.
“The publication states that the former governor was linked to the contract for the emergency repair of Close B, Alhaji Estate & Environs, Rumuodomaya, Port Harcourt, at a cost of N429m.
“I want to state clearly that the said accusation is false. Uduaghan has never approached the NDDC for any contract whatsoever.
“It is even more ridiculous that the said contract is a road inside Port Harcourt town.
“The attention of the Minister of the Niger Delta, Sen. Akpabio, has been drawn to the publication and I hope he makes a correction,” he said.
Edited By: Remi Koleoso/Ejike Obeta (NAN)
Okowa felicitates with Ibori at 62
Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta has congratulated a former Governor of the state, Chief James Ibori, on the occasion of his 62th birthday day anniversary on Aug. 4.
Okowa in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Olisa Ifeajika, on Monday in Asaba eulogised Ibori for his path-finding and immense contributions to the development of Delta and outstanding input to nation-building.
While felicitating with his boss, whom he served as two-term commissioner, Okowa said that Ibori’s deep knowledge of politics and his administrative acumen put him ahead of his contemporaries, and stood him out as a worthy and legendary leader of all time.
He commended Ibori for championing and his doggedness in the fight for resource control struggle.
Okowas said that the result of the resource contro struggle was the establishment of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) by the Federal Government as an interventionist agency for the development of oil producing communities.
“My distinguished leader, I can recall clearly that you and other great leaders fought very hard for the oil -producing states of the Niger Delta to enjoy 13 per cent derivation of the nation’s oil resources.
“As a champion of Resource Control and Fiscal Federalism, you were among the true patriots who struggled for the establishment of a regional interventionist agency to address the issues of development and environmental degradation of the oil-rich Niger Delta, which gave birth to the NDDC.
“As a respected voice in Nigeria’s democratic experience, we were not surprised when your colleagues in the forum of former governors named you as “Patron” of the group in an obvious recognition of your political sagacity and amiable disposition to the unity of the country.
“As the father of modern Delta, let me commend you for the visionary and inclusive leadership that you epitomised in the eight years of laying the foundation of the desired modern Delta laced with building bridges of unity among the diverse ethnic groups in the state.
“On behalf of my family, the government and people of Delta, I rejoice with your family members, friends, political and business associates on this occasion of your 62nd birth anniversary.
“It is my prayer that your best years are yet to come even as God Almighty grants you long life, good health and wisdom to keep navigating Nigeria’s political and business landscapes fruitfully,” Okowa said.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Tajudeen Atitebi (NAN)
Delta Govt trains teachers ahead of schools’ resumption
In preparation for the resumption of schools, the Delta Government on Monday begun sensitisation programme for teachers in Ika North-East Local Government Area.
Mr Innocent Ezeamaiwe, member, Ika North-East Rapid Response Team for COVID-19, said the training was geared toward equipping the teachers with necessary information on COVID-19, and how to manage the pandemic.
Ezeamaiwe said that the exercise was part of the state government’s initiative on the basic procedures for handling the pandemic in schools.
“The objective is to ensure the safety of teachers and students when we reopened the schools.
“The students and teachers are expected to adhere strictly to the laid down precautionary measures,” he said.
Ezeamaiwe also urged teachers and parents not to be afraid of the school reopening, assuring them that the state government was working out the modalities to perfect the whole process.
He urged teachers to be good ambassadors, by observing and adhering strictly to the guidelines on the prevention of Coronavirus pandemic.
In his remarks, Christopher Ekamagule, the Education Secretary, Local Education Authority, Ika North-East, commended the state government for its decision to reopen schools.
Ekamagule said that the students could no longer afford to wait at home.
He urged participants to maximise the opportunity, adding that victory over the pandemic was becoming stronger.
The training exercise took place in three centres – Owa Oyibu Secondary School; Akumazi Umuocha Secondary School and Ika Grammar school.
Edited By: Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)
NDDC has yet to pay contractors of roads I facilitated:Orji Uzor Kalu to Akpabio
Chief Whip of the Senate Orji Uzor Kalu on Monday said that the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has yet to pay some contractors that he facilitated to build community roads.
Kalu, a former governor of Abia, said this while reacting to a the communique written by Sen. Godswill Akpabio, Minister of the Niger Delta Affairs to the National Assembly.
The communique reportedly mentioned names of former governors Emmanuel Uduaghan, James Ibori , senators Ifeanyi Ararume and Orji Uzor Kalu, among others, as beneficiaries to the several contracts allocations by the NDDC.
In a statement signed by Mr Emeka Nwala of office of the Senate Chief Whip and made available to news men in Abuja, Kalu said that he believed the issues at stake in the NDDC had to do with missing funds and not works done.
He said that he was becoming worried over his name being used indiscriminately to sell newspapers without verification.
According to the senate chief whip , the road projects mentioned by the minister are the interventions he facilitated for the communities as a private citizen before he became a senator.
Kalu noted that his name was mentioned because he used his letter headed paper to write a sympathetic letter to the NDDC in 2016 requesting and pleading with the body to rescue roads in Abia.
He also noted that his relationship with Akpabio dated years back and long before he (Kalu) became a governor, adding that he would still request for more road interventions from Akpabio in time.
He said: “I was governor of Abia between 1999 and 2007 and never held any public office until June 11, 2019 when I was sworn in as a senator.
“Between 2016 and 2018 during my tour to several communities, leaders and welfare unions of most communities pleaded for urgent interventions on some dilapidated roads.
“The NDDC in their consideration for which I am very grateful, awarded the roads to companies that duly tendered for the projects and not myself.
“Whatever link I have with the projects is because it was considered due to my intervention,” he said.
“The roads I requested for intervention as mentioned by the minister were repairs of Ezere-Acha-Ndiokoukwu Road; Amaubiri-Eluama-Uru Ring Road, Lokpaukwu, Umuchieze; Ndi Oji Abam-Atani Road; the Okafia-Ozuitem-Bende road and Ozu-Amuru-Abam Road.
“The contractors have completed and delivered these road’s; long time ago except ! road which I learnt from the contractors was slowed down due to rainfall but still ongoing.
“Meanwhile, it would interest Nigerians to know that the contractors who built these roads have not been paid any dime.
“It has not been easy with the contractors but because it’s a community project they have only but kept hope alive on the NDDC.” he said.
Edited By: Emmanuel Nwoye/Kayode Olaitan (NAN)