The Chairman of Young Democratic Party (YDP) in Delta state, Barrister Festus Ofume, has taken a swipe at the present and past administrations in the state blaming them for the low level of development experienced in the state in the past 26 years.
Barrister Ofume, told journalists in the Senator Ifeanyi Okowa conference hall of the Indigenous Correspondents Chapel (ICC) secretariat, Asaba on Thursday, 24/8/2017 that there is no way Delta State could be said to have recorded a pass mark in the area of development 26 years after its creation as a state. “We have not seen any feature of development. Delta state has not lived up to the development indices expected of a state 26 years after its creation, he declared, attributing it all “to bad and poor leadership in the state so far.”
He said in 26 years, Delta state has not experienced right and proper administration and proper governance. “Look at Asaba the capital city. We are all witnesses to the ravaging effect of flooding in the capital city. It is because the current and previous administrations failed to understand and imbibe the concept of continuity. It is absurd that a government does not believe in continuing with and completing projects inherited from the previous administrations in the state. The administrations, which are all PDP administrations do not understand governance. They don’t believe in continuing with what the administrations they succeed have started. They believe it not their project and so completing it for the benefit of the people does not matter to them,” Ofume lamented.
Pointing out that running a government is all about bringing good governance close to the people, he cited an example about continuity with the former Governor of Lagos State, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Ofume said: “I give kudos to Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu; he brought development to the people and his successors are doing continuity. They are not abandoning projects because they were not started by them. In achieving good governance, continuity of projects, programmed and policies of the previous government is a major factor for consideration because those projects, policies and programmes were developed for the peoples’ benefits. Not continuing with them amounts to denying the people of the benefits that the projects would have brought if completed. Look at DLA Road, look at Mariam Babangida Way, Asaba, they represent clear examples of a government not continuing with a project because it was not started by it.
“Again, look at Delta Line, it is dead because resources are not properly allocated to it,” Ofume pointed out.
On the Paris club funding to state governments, the YDP state chairman said the right action should have been for the Delta State government to tell the people how it has expended the money. “It is not enough for the state government to say that it has expended the money judiciously,” Ofume said.
He described YDP as a grassroots political party that is out to right the wrongs of bad governance in the country and in Delta state in particular. “What we are saying is that the youths who have been successful in their various endeavours should be given the opportunity to run the affairs of government and bring about good governance. We are not going to see governance as a means of settling scores with political opponents, or a means to marginalize a certain group of people as it is currently the case with the other political parties.
Reminded that the Kogi State governor is a youth and asked whether as a youthful governor if he was doing well, Ofume said: “The Kogi State governor though a youth is not doing well because he was foisted on the people and not by popular choice. His emergence as Kogi state governor is a fluke. He was imposed.
“In YDP we believe that every party member is a voter. We will not allow a governor to become the alter ego of the party. That is what is happening in APC in Kogi State,” he said.
Answering another question, the YDP leader said: “We just concluded our state congress on July 31, 2017, currently, we are going round the the state. And with the speed with which we are working, before long YDP will become a house hold name. We will be fully involved in presenting candidates to contest the forthcoming local government elections in Delta state.”
Ofume said YDP is not a name that is averse to having elders in their fold, but that it is a name that belongs to a new idea about governance. “We are not telling the elders that we are retiring them from politics, we are saying that politics and government should bring about good governance where the interest of the people is upper most. The issue is to bring governance close to the people,” he said.