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28 Jan
0

Methanol, other manufacturing firms ready for Delta – Okowa

Delta Governor, Senator (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, on Tuesday said activities would begin soon at Kwale Industrial Park as methanol and transmission tower manufacturing companies had indicated readiness to set up their plants in the state.

The governor made the disclosure at the South-South Export Enlightenment and Engagement Forum organised by the Nigeria Export-Import Bank (NEXIM Bank) in conjunction with Delta Government in Asaba.

He said “Our investment drives have started paying off; our state has commenced the process of take-off of the Kwale Industrial Park located along Ughelli-Asaba Expressway.

“Expected to drive this administration’s industrialization agenda, the Park has the potential to be Nigeria’s biggest location for gas and energy intensive manufacturing such as ceramics, rubber and methanol.

“I can confidently say that we engaged in a successful road show at China which will bring about the establishment of a methanol manufacturing plant at the park within the next few months; pulp and paper will also be manufactured at the Park.

“As a demonstration of our faith in the viability of the project and as an incentive to prospective investors, my administration approved a seed fund of 10 million dollars for partnership with interested investors in the Park.

“In the same token, we have earmarked the sum of five million dollars as seed capital for the establishment of a transmission tower manufacturing plant being promoted by ENFRASCO Limited.

“The project, which will be sited at Issele-Uku, comprises the establishment of a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant for power transmission, telecommunication masts, hot dip galvanizing plant,tower testing and certification facility and research facility training school with focus on fabrication and distribution know-how.

“This sort of commitment on the part of the state government serves to de-risk investments and give assurance to prospective investors.”

Okowa called for diversification of the nation’s economy from oil and gas, saying “evidently, this distorted mono-product economy does not bode well for inclusive economic growth and sustainable development as oil is a depleting resource.

“Even more importantly, the advent of electric cars is a clear and present danger to the future of this industry, hence, the urgent need for the governments in the Niger Delta region to expeditiously diversify their economies and maximise our non-oil export potential.

“To achieve this, it is exigent that we first take full advantage of our unique location. In business, it is axiomatic that being in the right location is critical for success.

“Our natural location in the coastal region puts us in a prime position to engage in export-import

trade; take Delta, for instance, it has four seaports in Warri, Burutu, Sapele and Koko, whose combined capacity exceeds that of all the other ports in Nigeria put together.

“You can, therefore, imagine the quantum of trade and commerce as well as the limitless possibilities that exist for investment and employment opportunities when just two of the ports are fully functional.”

Welcoming participants earlier, Managing Director of NEXIM Bank, Mr Abubakar Bello, had stated that efforts should be geared towards encouraging non-oil export.

He announced that N1 billion had been set aside for entrepreneurs that produced non-oil export products for each state of the country.

Edo Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, attended the opening of the Forum.

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26 Jan
0

Delta out with one-stop public service secretariat

Within three months of the creation of Delta in 1991, the first secretariat complex popularly referred to as ‘Works’ was hurriedly put in place by the then military administrator, Group Captain Luke Ochulor, in Asaba, the capital. The complex barely accommodated the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and the army of public servants relocated from Benin City, the capital of defunct Bendel State, where Delta was carved out from.

Many public offices, including the Government House and Deputy Governor’s quarters, operated in rented apartments, but successive governments headed by late Felix Ibru, Group Captain Ibrahim Kefas (retd), Brig-Gen. Bassey Asuquo (retd), late Col. John Dungs, Navy Captain Walter Feghabor (retd), Chief James Ibori and Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, who all administered the state between 1994 and 2015, saw to the construction of some office buildings in Asaba to complement the State Secretariat now known as Olorogun Felix Ibru Secretariat, built by the Federal Government to support the new state.

During the period, a Government House was built and the secretariat was extended, but some public establishments remained in rented buildings, a situation that continued to encumber effective delivery of services by MDAs.

Recognizing this deficit and determined to change the narrative, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, on assumption of office as governor in 2015, conceived the idea of a modern secretariat that will accommodate all MDAs – an integrated complex with the objective of providing an environment conducive for work by public servants in the state under one roof. To the governor, it is only such complex that would provide the public service in the state the tonic needed for seamless discharge of its responsibility in the well-articulated governance pattern of his administration.

The contract for the project was awarded in December, 2016 to North China Construction Nigeria Limited, a Chinese company said to be a grade `A’ firm classified in the same category as Julius Berger Nigeria Limited, but mobilization to site was in November, 2017, and work began pronto.

Three years on, the project, which has developed from obscurity to an imposing and audacious edifice, occupies about 65,000 square metres space along Mariam Babangida Way in Asaba, between Olorogun Felix Ibru Secretariat and its Annex. Its ground floor alone approximates two standard football fields.

Aside being an integrated complex designed to house all MDAs, construction of the secretariat is aimed at reducing wastages and cost of governance as it will save the huge funds currently being spent by government on rent for some MDAs. The savings, of course, will be deployed by the government, to other purposes to boost the state’s economy, flowing from its track of prudent fiscal management.

Interestingly, the project is being funded under Contractor-Financed model, which means that the contractor is using its resources to build the secretariat, while the state will repay under an arrangement agreed by both parties. Adopting this method of funding the project is pragmatic as it gives the state government leverage to deploy freed funds to other needs.

According to Mr Henry Sakpra, Commissioner for Special Duties, who is in charge of the secretariat project, the complex has the capacity to accommodate no less than 27 ministries, agencies, departments and parastatals; it has five clusters – A to E.

“Clusters A and B have four floors; clusters D and E have four floors while cluster C which is the middle structure has seven floors. Two floors on each cluster has a courtyard and will house a ministry, with each floor having elevators and staircases,” he explained.

Sakpra disclosed that raft approach in modern building was deployed for the foundation of the structure and it measured up to 2.7 metres in depth, representing about two times the height of an average man.

He said, “the raft approach will guarantee the sturdiness and integrity of the building as well as guard against any breach or possible collapse.

“The complex has facilities for a crèche, a bank as well as a clinic. For instance, if an official comes to work and wants to go to the bank, there will be no need to leave the premises.

“For mothers, there is a place to cater for the needs of their children while they do their work.

“Besides, the complex is designed to reduce paper work in most official dealings as all offices will be able to share information through Information Communication Technology facility that will be deployed in the building.’’

The initial timeline for the completion of the complex was last quarter, 2019, but this was shifted to first quarter, 2020, due to some hiccups in clearing the construction materials at the seaport. Officials claimed that about six months was lost in sorting out the hitches, but assured that the project would be delivered at the new schedule.

Sakpra stated that about 80 per cent of the project had been completed and that work was currently at finishing stages.

“As we speak, there is a frenzy of activities in all the floors, rooms and offices; tiling is ongoing, water installation, landscaping, water treatment and roofing have been completed.

“Work is constantly in progress, seamlessly and without any hindrance. The completion timeline of first quarter of 2020 will be met.

“This building will serve as a one-stop shop for government businesses. It is built to house state facilities and we call it `Intelligence Building’.

“This is because it is going to contain all the facilities needed to make work much easier and by that, improve the efficiency of work for our civil servants and public officers. This secretariat building is first of its kind in the country,” he said.

Already, the quality and magnificence of the complex is attracting attention from residents and visitors to the state – no one passes by that way without beholding the structure. At the recent conference of the National Council on Establishment which comprises Heads of Civil Service of the Federation and in the 36 states, in Asaba, the members, led by the Acting Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr. Folashade Yemi-Esan, took time off their schedule to tour the secretariat project. In her remarks at the end of the tour, an obviously impressed Yemi-Esan said, “this is fantastic, it is marvelous. This type of edifice built as workers’ work place, to the best of my knowledge, is only in Delta.

“It is great and workers in this wonderful building will have no reason not to give their all, their best, to the job. The governor is a gentle and great man and this has been demonstrated in this building.

“He has continued to show his friendly disposition toward the workers in the state.”

Sir Austin Oghenekevwe, a retired civil servant, who claimed to have been attracted to the site by the size of the building, said, “We never had such an edifice when I was in service and it makes me happy to know that we have a governor who is interested in the welfare and wellbeing of civil servants.

“Okowa is indeed, a wonderful man, whose projects and programmes are always people-oriented. We love him and prayed for him as he takes us to a Stronger Delta.’’

Similarly, Mr Chika Odili of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism in the state said “it is certain that the governor is determined to ensure that civil servants receive the best and put in their best by providing a conducive working environment.

“From what I have heard about this secretariat, it will contain a lot of facilities that will make our work a lot easier.”

He commended the governor for his efforts at developing the state and urged him not to relent.

“We can’t wait for this edifice, this gift by the governor to workers, to be opened for use’’ is the running chorus by excited public servants and residents in the state, anxiously waiting for the two months left in the deadline for the completion of the complex.

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25 Jan
0

Okowa calls for mentorship among Christians

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta has called for mentorship among Christians to provide legacy of genuine discipleship of Jesus Christ.

The governor made the call on Saturday at the 40th anniversary celebration of the Anglican Diocese of Warri at the Bishop’s Court, Warri.

According to him, mentorship and discipleship are very important in the growth of the church.

He said, “I congratulate the diocese for attaining 40 years, a period with which the church has grown in leaps and bounds.

“I am happy that we are growing as a church; this Diocese has given birth to other dioceses and churches.

“We should rededicate ourselves to God as we move beyond 40 years; we have won souls and we should continue to win more souls for Christ.”

The governor commended the church for documenting the activities of the church in a book and urged the faithful to not only have a copy of the book, but to read it.

Earlier in an address, the Bishop of the Diocese, Rt. Rev. Christian Ide, had said that the Diocese of Warri had every reason to thank God because it had attained tremendous and remarkable achievements, physically and spiritually.

According to him, it has been able to attain unity and peace in tandem with its mandate as enshrined in its vision: the light of the gospel in all dark places.

“The Diocese of Warri was carved out of Benin Diocese and it has within the four decades of its existence, given birth to the Diocese of Ughelli,  Oleh, Western Izon and Sapele, to the glory of God,” he said.

High point of the event, which was preceded by a Thanksgiving Service by members of the church, was the launch of the book – Diocese of Warri at 40.

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25 Jan
0

Okowa affirms administration’s commitment to selfless service

Delta Governor, Senator (Dr. ) Ifeanyi Okowa, on Sunday, reaffirmed his commitment to rendering selfless service to Deltans.

The governor made this known while inaugurating five projects in Isoko South and Isoko North Local Government Areas of the state.

The projects, which were inaugurated amid jubilation by the people, were Opute Hall, Ozoro; Ultra Modern Civic Centre, Uzere; Model Secondary School, Uzere; Students Hostel at the Delta State University, Oleh Campus and Six three-bedroom bungalows for visiting Lecturers also at the university.

“This administration has always been on course; we have come to Isoko to inaugurate some infrastructure development projects executed by Delta State Oil Producing Communities Development Commission (DESOPADEC), an arm of government.

“We are committed to providing adequate service to our people and we will remain focused; as you can see, the amendment of the laws establishing DESOPADEC has given room for more resources to go into provision of infrastructure.

“Several communities in the oil-producing communities are feeling the impact of governance.

“We have inaugurated five projects and I am glad that all the agencies of government are responding favourably to the needs of our various communities.

“Isoko people are friends of my administration and we will do our best to keep to our promises as evident with the projects executed across the state,” he said.

The Managing Director of DESOPADEC, Chief Askia Ogieh, commended Okowa for giving government agencies the freedom to execute people-oriented programmes.

Prominent Isoko citizens, including Prof. Abednego Ekoko, Mrs Cordelia Obaro, Mr. Nicholas Areh and Dr Nelson Ejakpovi, thanked the governor for providing enabling environment for democratic dividends to be provided.

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23 Jan
0

Meeting of the Chief of Staff with Senior Political Appointees

To facilitate the coordination of the activities of Political Appointees, the Chief of Staff and Secretary to the State Government are scheduled to meet with Political Appointees as follows:

Batch 1 Special Advisers, Special Project Directors, Director-Generals, Chief Press Secretary, Director of Protocol and other Senior Appointees. 10am to 12:00pm Tuesday 28th January 2020. Unity Hall
Batch 2 Executive Assistants, Senior Special Assistants, Consultants. 10am to 12:00pm Wednesday 29th January 2020. Unity Hall
Batch 3 Special Assistants & Political Aides. 10am to 12:00pm Thursday 30th January 2020. Unity Hall

 

The meetings are aimed at enabling the relevant government functionaries achieve the following:

  • Engage each other and agree responsibilities, deliverables, time frames and strategies
  • Agree support required from the Office of the Chief of Staff and other relevant offices.
  • Agree framework for performance evaluation

3. Pre-meeting materials have been sent to the email addresses of all concerned.

4. All Political Appointees are advised to take note and attend promptly as attendance is mandatory.

 

Olorogun David Edevbie
Chief of Staff

 

For any inquiries, please contact

Lucky O. Idike Jr.
Special Assistant to the Governor.
Office of the Chief of Staff.
08172004200

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21 Jan
0

Delta approves construction of 11 new roads.

Delta Government on Tuesday approved 11 new roads in the state for construction.

Commissioner for Works, Chief James Augoye, made this known while briefing newsmen at the end of the state’s Executive Council meeting in Asaba.

Auguye disclosed that the approved roads needed urgent attention as the state government was desirous of utilizing the dry season to construct a lot of roads.

“As we are aware, we are in the dry season and the government is working to increase the pace of road construction in the state.

He said that the council approved Oniore/High Court road, Orerokpe; Obi Azikwuo Street, Boji Boji, Owa; Alika Street in Boji Boji, Owa; Ogbeima internal roads in Bomadi Local Government Area and Okerenkoko township road phase 4.

“Also approved for construction is the Pamol Road in Ethiope West local government area; Construction of additional drains at the Ekwuoma/Umunede road, a road that has already been completed; DDPA road phase 4, Agbor, in Ika South; Igbite Street, Staff Quarters in Okpe Local Government Area; reconstruction and resurfacing of Alihame/Agbonta/Oki road and Tete road in Boji Boji, Owa, Ika North East.

“Contracts are awarded based on available money, and contractors are happy, projects that can be paid for are awarded because the process for the award of contracts are well planned.

“I want to use this opportunity to state that the Abari/Asaba-Ase road is not abandoned; the only way for the contractor to move equipment to the site is through Uzere federal road which is in a very bad shape. s

“So, our governor has requested for what it will take to carry out remedial work on the federal road to enable the contractor access the Abari/Asaba-Ase road,” he said.

On his part, Commissioner for Youths Development, Mr Ifeanyi Egwuyenga, who, along with his Information counterpart, Mr Charles Aniagwu, were part of the briefing, stated that plans to reduce irregular migration in the state included aggressive enlightenment in schools and creating more job opportunities.

“Our Governor is committed to discouraging brain drain and irregular migration in the state.

“So, during the Exco meeting, a lot of issues were discussed and we all agreed that the bulk of the victims are youths.

“Measures are being taken to encourage youths to develop skills and we are initiating a lot of projects to discourage youths from irregular migration and we are engaging in a lot of partnership to achieve results as it concerns the youths.

“Entrepreneurship programmes for youths cannot be exhausted; we are taking critical look at rural youth dwellers and we will meet them where they are and we will have purely local government domiciled programmes for youths,” Egwuyenga said.

The information Commissioner, Mr Aniagwu, reiterated the determination of government to stop irregular migration of the youths under the guise of seeking greener pastures in places with no guaranteed security and assurance of better living conditions.

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20 Jan
0

Court Of Appeal complex, Asaba ready Feb. 3

Delta Governor, Sen. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, on Monday said the Court of Appeal Complex for the Asaba Division would be inaugurated on Feb. 3, 2020.

Okowa who inspected ongoing work at the complex located at Mariam Babangida Way, told newsmen that finishing touches were being made to ensure that everything was in place before the inauguration.

He expressed satisfaction with the level of work done so far on the project and stated that the functionality of the court would bring a lot of relief to Deltans who travelled long distances to other states to seek justice.

He said, “We were here a few weeks before the Christmas holidays to inspect this project and from what we can see now, the contractors have done very well; a lot of work has been carried out on this project.

“This project is due for inauguration on the 3rd of February which is two weeks from today.

Although I believe that there is still a few more things to be done, the contractor has given the assurance that within one week the project will be completed.

“Four states were approved to have Courts of Appeal and I am happy that we are set, everything is in place as we will meet with the date set for its inauguration.”

The governor explained that with a division of Court of Appeal in Delta, there would be speedy delivery of judgment for the people.

He added that the risk of going to other states and travelling long distances in search of justice would now be eliminated.

According to him, we are happy as a people and as a state that we are making progress in all spheres of life.

The governor also inspected the Traditional Rulers Council secretariat project where he noted that its completion would provide a conducive environment for the traditional rulers to discuss issues concerning their kingdoms.

He told the newsmen that traditional rulers had contributed a lot to the development of the state by ensuring peaceful co-existence in their domains and that giving them a befitting secretariat was important.

The Commissioner for Housing, Chief Festus Ochonogor, his Information counterpart, Mr Charles Aniagwu, the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Peter Mrakpor, among others, accompanied the governor on the inspection.

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19 Jan
0

Okowa charges Nigerians on generosity

Delta Governor, Senator (Dr.) Ifeanyi Okowa, has called on Nigerians to be generous and God-fearing while dealing with others.
The governor made the call on Sunday in Warri at the 60th birth anniversary celebration of Mr Alex Onyeagwu, a renowned businessman.
According to him, the act of generosity and kindness among Nigerians will engender a more peaceful and prosperous nation.
He said, “today, we are here to celebrate a very compassionate man, a very generous man who gives his best to humanity in whatever he does.
“There is a lot of lessons to learn from his style of living; a life of generosity, a life of kindness and a life of sharing with others.
“As Nigerians, we will do better when we are more generous and compassionate to one another.
“For us to record speedy progress as a people, we have to be supportive of one another.”
Okowa congratulated the celebrant for clocking 60 and advised him not to relent in contributing to making the society better through his generosity.
Chairman of the occasion, Chief Fidelis Tilije, who is the Commissioner for Finance in Delta, described Onyeagwu as a philanthropist who was dedicated to serving God.

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19 Jan
0

Kindness, fear of God tonic for long life – Okowa 

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta says kindness and fear of God are some virtues individuals need to enjoy long life and prosperity.
Okowa stated this on Sunday in Warri at the 60th birth anniversary celebration by a renowned businessman, Mr Alex Onyeagwu.
He said that Onyeagwu was a God-fearing and benevolent man, who always used his wealth to uplift the downtrodden.
The governor urged him not to relent in his philanthropy and wished him more years of prosperity and opportunity to affect more lives.
He said that diamond age was worth celebrating and charged Onyeagwu to sustain his relationship with God, the giver of life and wealth.
Chairman of the occasion, who is the Commissioner for Finance in the state, Chief Fidelis Tilije, said Onyeagwu had distinguished himself with his humanitarian disposition and dedication to the service of God.
Tilije said his relationship with the celebrant was anchored on love for each other and wished him more fruitful years.

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18 Jan
0

Render service to humanity in God’s name, Okowa admonishes Nigerians

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta has urged Nigerians to render service to humanity as a reflection of God’s wish for His children.

He made the call on Saturday at the wedding between Mr Daniel Omoghene and Miss Esther Ofou at Church of God Mission international, Asaba.

According to the governor, service to the people should be rendered selflessly and such service will never go unnoticed and it will be rewarded.

“When you work, when you render service, do it with all your heart; render service wherever you find yourself as if you are doing it for God.

“Do not engage in eye-service, because when you work hard, you will get your reward.

“Recall that among those in ‘Our Mata’ group, someone was moved from Special Assistant to Commissioner position in this state; it shows that selfless service will not go unnoticed,” he said.

He advised the couple to allow Jesus to preside over their home all the time “and everything will work according to His will.”

He said “My wife and I are already 33 years in marriage by God’s grace and I believe we have a lot of experience to share.

“Learn to read the Bible, study His words together; trust God at all times to provide for your family.

“Allow Jesus Christ and the word of God into your family because once you accept Jesus, everything works for good; we should know Christ and allow Him to reside in our homes and with Him, He will provide for us.

“I am convinced that this marriage will work.”

Okowa thanked the parents of the couple and the church for ensuring that the wedding was a success.

Earlier, in a sermon, Rev. Eric Nwachukwu, urged the couple to always share things together, avoid keeping secrets and not to also allow outside interference in their family.

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