Governor Okowa taking the oath of office for 2nd term, administered by the Chief Judge of Delta State, Justice Marshall Umukoro at the Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba.
Deputy Governor, Barrister Kingsley Otuaro taking his 2nd term oath of office.
The journey of better days and building a stronger Delta where Deltans can freely and confidently, pursue dreams and happiness in a safe and secure environment began today as Governor Ifeanyi Okowa and his deputy, Barrister Kingsley Otuaro took the oath of office for second term at the Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba in the full glare of their wives and other Deltans.
The event which saw the cream-de-la-cream of Delta State come out in their elements, with men and women and admirers of the governor in their gaiety, resplendent in their various attires that added colour to the beauty of the ceremony, while men of the Nigerian police force added glitter to the event with their usually enthralling match past.
At about 10 a.m., Governor Okowa rode into the capacity filled stadium in a blaze of glory, his car led in the front by skilled motorcycle out riders, with men on horseback at the sides of the car, added to the glamour.
The Governor and his deputy, after subscribing to the oath of office for second term rode in the traditional open air jeep round the stadium to acknowledge the cheers and greetings of Deltans from the various stands of the stadium. Thereafter, he took the salute of the match past conducted by the police. The beauty of the match past elevated the beauty of the ceremony.
Yet, of great relief is the value that was seen in the Stephen Keshi Stadium, its sheer expanse provided the needed space that effectively accommodated the dazzling match of the police ceremonial officers.
Prayers were said by the clergy who handed Delta State, Okowa and his deputy to God for His guidance as they pilot the affairs of the state in the second term.
And in his speech, Governor Okowa said: “The oath of service I just took is more than an official function or constitutional requirement, it is a covenant between us, a covenant to build a stronger Delta in which we can freely and confidently, pursue our dreams and happiness in a safe and secure environment.
“We shall remain mindful of the fact that whatever we do without laying a good foundation for our youths would be ‘building blocks on quick sand;’ parents, guardians, teachers and community leaders must rise up to their duties,” he said, adding, “we must teach our children the difference between good and evil, right and wrong; they must be taught the virtues of hard work, civic obligations, love, tolerance, good neighbourliness and respect for elders because, we must realize that if we give the wrong foundation to our children today, it goes on to bite the society when they grow up.”
The governor scored his administration high in the management of human and material resources, disclosing that during his first term in office, his administration through the Ministries of Works, Urban Renewal and the Delta State Capital Territory Development Agency, embarked on a total of 455 road projects comprising 1,269.42 kilometres and 517.34 kilometres of drainage channels and as at April 30, 2019, 263 of these roads, covering 638.23 kilometres and 295.71 kilometres of associated drains have been completed.
Amidst applause from the excited crowd, Governor Okowa reeled out the achievements of his administration in his first term to also, include, the rehabilitation of technical colleges at Agbor, Sapele, Ofagbe, Utagba-Ogbe, Ogor and Issele-Uku, stating that plans have been concluded for the construction of construction of 19 more technical colleges to ensure that every local government area in the state has at least, one technical college to encourage skill and entrepreneurship development of the people.
“As many of you present here will testify that we devoted substantial resources, time and energy to build a knowledge-based economy and a critical mass of skills for entrepreneurship and business competitiveness; over 20,000 persons benefited from our flagship Skills Training and Entrepreneurship Programme (STEP), Youth Agricultural Entrepreneurs Programme (YAGEP) and similar programmes undertaken by the Ministries of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Commerce and Industry, Women Affairs as well as the Delta State Micro Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency,” the governor said, stating that curriculum of tertiary institutions in the state would be overhauled to include courses in personal development and problem solving.
He also, listed the achievements of his administration to include the accreditation of courses offered by the Delta State University, approval for the take-off of the Faculty of Environmental Sciences at the Asaba Campus of DELSU, emphasizing that the upgrade of Asaba Airport to category 6 which receives international flights was also, an achievement by his administration in his first term as the airport will be concessioned to a consortium.
While he did a break-down of sector by sector achievements of his administration in his first term in office, Governor Okowa gave credit to the Delta State Advisory and Peace Building Council, the Advocacy Committee Against Vandalism of Oil and Gas Facilities, traditional rulers, community leaders, grassroots organisations, and various stakeholders for working closely with his administration to ensure a peaceful state that has become the choice of investors.
“My deputy and I, pledge to do our best to be deserving of your trust; indeed, we are resolute in our quest to leave a legacy of a Delta State that is the frontrunner in the federation; all we need are your prayers and full cooperation; the future that we envision requires that we all open our hearts and minds to the values of love, courage, discipline, cooperation and commitment, which are imperative for growth, stability and sustainable development,” Governor Okowa said, reiterating, “we will explore the limitless possibilities that abound in our State and harness them for the greater good of all; in the same token, we must exigently sheath all political/ethnic cleavages, avoid stereotypes, shun prejudices, sustain and strengthen the institutions that enable peaceful co-existence in order to build a State united in our diversity. These values constitute the cornerstone for building a Stronger Delta with the three pillars of Prosperity, Peace and Progress.”