Delta Governor, Sen. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa on Monday said his administration had worked hard and reduced poverty level in the state through numerous empowerment and job creation programmes.
Okowa disclosed this in “Your View’’, an interview on TVC television via Skype, monitored in Asaba.
He said that the state government was committed to giving Deltans a good standard of living that they truly deserved as citizens of an oil-producing state.
The governor stated that women and youths had benefited immensely from his administration’s job creation programmes, which led to the rating of the state as the second state with the least poor people in the country.
He disclosed that his administration had created lots of jobs through huge investments in road, health and education infrastructure, adding that prevailing peace in Niger Delta also impacted gainfully on the local economy.
“A lot has been done in Delta State in the last five years and the people are happy. Only recently, Delta was rated very high when it comes to the issue of reduction of poverty, because we have done a lot in trying to create jobs for our people, trying to get our people engaged; we have done a lot in keeping the oil facilities working as it ought to be and that has greatly improved the local economy.
“And, very importantly, we’ve done quite a lot in terms of road infrastructure, health infrastructure, school infrastructure; a lot has been done even as we give special attention to technical education because it is good for us.
“A lot is also being done for the women; in the first instance, our job creation programme which is from the Job Creation Office, we have ensured that in everything that we do, there is a minimum of at least 40 per cent of women engaged in the job creation programme.
“We have trained several thousands of youths and of course, most of the fashion designers we are talking about, over 300 of them that were engaged in the production of the one million face masks were actually women.
“From the Ministry of Women Affairs a lot is being done to empower our women and we have also started a programme such that even as we have reduced our budget for 2020, rather than reduce our budgets for women we are actually up-scaling it.
“This is because we understand that this is the time to truly empower women to put food on their tables,’’ he said.
Okowa added that his administration had made provision for special attention for the girl-child in the state to ensure that girls got a good start in life.
According to him, realising that the girl-child is also being neglected, we have created an office for girl-child entrepreneurship development and empowerment and we are very happy about that because we want to be sure that our women and girls are properly engaged because when they are engaged they can actually keep the family well fed because women know how to manage funds much better than men and there is no doubt about that.
“Through the Ministry of Youths Development, we just approved and released funds to engage youths in 270 wards and I have insisted that at least out of the three that we are choosing, one person must also be a female so we are doing quite a lot apart from our Micro Credit Development Agency where a lot of women have truly been impacted,” he stated.