• Friday, June 14, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Rivers’ technocrat commends Fubara’s courage to lift decade-old projects off ground

Rivers’ technocrat commends Fubara’s courage to lift decade-old projects off ground

The courage by the embattled Rivers State Governor, Sim Fubara to lift many projects that had remained on the drawing board for over 20 years off the ground must be a subject of study.

In his speech at the banquet to mark the 57th anniversary of the state, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Tammy Danagogo, said Governor Fubara has already broken many jinx.

He mentioned some roads that have been on the drawing board, saying the amounts were huge but that Fubara seemed not afraid.

A book on the Old Rivers State was also unveiled, said to be written by a cross section of elites, intellectuals, and leaders from Rivers and Bayelsa states.

Danagogo said: “You will agree with me that in the past one year, His Excellency has proven his mettle by maintaining peace and security all across the State, completing most of the ongoing projects we met on assumption of office, and initiating several crucial new projects all across the state.”

The SSG also said: “I am sure you all know, projects like the Unity Road (the Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo Road) which was started by our father, Peter Odili and successive governments took it up to Opobo, and Ikuru Town axis, he has within one year taken it up to Ngo Town, the headquarters of Andoni Local Government Area.

“I am sure you also know that the Port Harcourt Ring Road was on the drawing board for more than 20 years, and within one year, he has awarded the contract. I am sure you also see it on the road that Julius Berger is at jet-speed to achieve it within record time.”

Danagogo also talked about the original route of the Trans-Kalabari Road project, which he said was initially awarded by Peter Odili, and eventually abandoned by the contractors; an indigenous son.

Since then, Danagogo said, no government could dare re-award it, but Governor Fubara had broken the jinx and got the project started.

“It can only take a man with a lion’s heart to dare to embark on the construction of that road. Many successive governments had avoided awarding the contract because it is a very huge endeavour.

“But Governor Fubara has taken up the challenge, and awarded the contract. Today, work has commenced on the project that promises to open up that axis of the riverine to inclusive development”.

He said: “The same thing has happened with the new dualization of the Elele-Egbeda-Omoku Road, which His Excellency had also graciously awarded.

“These are very massive and gigantic projects that only a Governor with a lion’s heart can dare to award. And these and many more projects that we have initiated would be outlined in a Scorecard that would be presented at an ‘Account of Stewardship Forum’ which would hold on Wednesday, May 29, 2024, at the Obi Wali International Conference Centre, Port Harcourt at 10am,” he added.

In his remarks on the book on Old Rivers State, Biobele Da-Wariboko, said that the team of 97 authors and contributors from both Rivers and Bayelsa States began the process of writing the book titled: ‘Rivers Golden Expedition, Trials And Triumphs’ in 2016.’

He noted that so many factors prevented the completion and launch of the book in 2017, and attributed the launch on May 27, 2024, to providence and the grace of God.

He noted the eminent Rivers and Bayelsa indigenes who contributed to the success of the book, and described the compendium as a ‘collector’s treasure’, which every Rivers son and daughter must read to keep abreast of the history, endowments, and potentials of the State.

Highlights of the State Banquet were the cutting of the 57th Rivers Creation Anniversary Cake and official launch of the ‘Rivers Golden Expedition, Trials And Triumphs’ by the Governor Fubara, who was accompanied by former governors, deputy governors, senators, traditional rulers, and other leaders across the Isles.

There were also toasts for the peace, progress, and prosperity of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Rivers State as well as their respective leaders, in an evening of good music, comedy, dance, food and fun.

Some agencies got a huge path on the back for helping to sustain the administration so far. Gov Fubara said: “Let me specially thank our leader, Peter Odili. Let me specially thank Senator John Mbata. I have a reason to say this, and every one of you know it.

“But I need to call out these two: they are a strong symbol causing problem in the camp of the opposition. Each time they stand with us, they’re one million in one man, and it is troubling them.

“And this evening, with the calibre of people sitting on this table, there will be confusion somewhere. So, you can see the handiwork of God! It is not me. It is when God is in control, He makes everything perfect in His way and in His time,” he said.

Governor Fubara also thanked the security agencies for their various levels of support that had ensured that peace prevailed in the state, and urged them to continue to sustain the tempo.

He said, “We know that a lot of people are planning one thing or the other, but because you are gentlemen and women of honour, you have never accepted to join in destroying what we have as a state. So, I want to thank you, on behalf of the government.”

He specifically called out the heads of security agencies, military and paramilitary services in the state, and thanked them profusely for the immeasurable support and cooperation they have given to his administration, which had facilitated the successes recorded thus far.