Activities are ongoing. Construction works all around; new roads and streets are being constructed, old ones are being amended. Schools and hospitals are not left out in this seeming construction bonanza. The sleeping slate has suddenly been jacked back to life. It has overnight become a construction site, assuming an unprecedented new look as completed projects are frequently being commissioned. Ongoing projects, and projects penciled and announced for amendments, renovation and construction are surprisingly too numerous to be outlined.
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Things obviously are happening as they are sharpening up. Delta State is resurrecting. It is breathing again. It has survived the recession and is coming out of the economic coma.
The presence of governance is undeniably felt everywhere in Delta State. As it is in Delta Central and Delta North, so it is in Delta South.
Thousands of Delta youths, graduates and non-graduates have been groomed into one form of trade or the other, from vocational to agro based.
Job creation office, created by Okowa’s administration does this magic of revolutionary human development. It has two subsidiaries; STEP, Skills Training Entrepreneurship Program and YAGEP, Youth Agricultural Enterpreneurship Program. Trained youths are equipped with financial and material resources to embark on entrepreneurial journey of self employment and subsequently becoming employers of labour. The trained, equipped and empowered youths are our sons and daughters, brothers and sisters. They are here with us. It is no gimmicks. It is no story, it is real.
Major cities in Delta State being face lifted, beautified and decorated with street lights and trees. Villages, hitherto inaccessible are being opened up with new roads. There is a conscious effort on the part of the government to give Asaba the look of a state capital. Gigantic tunnels are constructed to check flood. The construction of the Asaba airport runway and the courageous completion of Stephen Keshi’s Stadium are testimonies of a determined administration to effect changes and impact lives and re-route the course of history with positive narratives.
As the governor is preoccupied with infrastructural and human development, the wife, using the office of the First Lady, launched a project called G5. Through G5 Initiatives, the government in collaboration with NGOs, provide medical facilities to the vulnerables of the society who ordinarily cannot afford the bills for treatment and drugs. Many who as a result would have died are given lease of life.
Today, trained youths are on the streets marketing their skills and getting paid for them. Those groomed agriculturally are producing and marketing their produce. Yesterday, they were job seekers, today, they are job creators. Skilled and unskilled hands are variously involved in completed and ongoing construction works and their services are being paid for. Building material merchants are constantly being patronized by contractors involved in construction and renovation works. Civil servants are paid as at when due. Recently, the state government released 5billion to local government council to help augment backlog of salaries. Farmers now have access to market and their produce do not have to wait too long to be sold.
Artisans are no longer redundant. The state economy is rekindled and rejuvenated. There are now long queues of customers in our banks, waiting to withdraw or deposit money. Is this not a pointer to changing fortunes? Things do not just happen. The governor and his team are working and the state that was almost crippled has commenced walking. This miracle of revival and outstanding growth and development is happening when many other states are being submerged by the forces of economic recession. Many people are outstandingly marveled at the pace of development in a short space of time in an era of very limited resources.
Many have applauded as they have commended this administration. Some however, are not just impressed, they are very critical of this administration, condemning it for nonperformance. They call those who rightly commend this administration sycophants and crumb pickers. These critics are Deltans, resident in Delta. They are witnesses to the infrastructural and human development, but for some unfathomable reasons, refused to acknowledge the development around them. Could it be that they have dislocated the perception of things or their fastidious stance has blurred their vision? Could it also be that they have been mentally brainwashed to emotional point of negativism, calling good bad? Could it be that their loyalty to their party has blinded them from reality with the warped reasoning that acknowledging their opponent’s achievement is tantamount to castigating their party? There are also among these armchair critics, individuals who are just natural skeptics and are cynically disposed to politicians. These are of the school of thought that all politicians are corrupt and nonperforming with itchy palms for public monies with the unwavering concepts that nothing good can ever be attributed to them. This administration is a product of political formation and is peopled by politicians.
These categories of persons are sufferers of political glaucoma. They have eyes yet cannot see clearly neither can they perceive or appreciate because they are bereft of senses of taste.
Delta is ours and we are Deltans. We do not have any other state of origin. The citizenship of Delta State is not by choice for over 90% Deltans. It is divine arrangement. It is our collective responsibility to see to its rapid growth and development for the sake of our children and children yet unborn. Any government that seems determined to ameliorate the lots of the people should be encouraged, as such gesture will make them achieve rare feat. Criticism should be constructive, pointing out what has already been done that could be done better or pointing out things that have not been done that should be done. All these could be done in all modesty and decorum: it is no war. It is just conflict of policies and methodologies. Castigation, undue condemnation and blackmail breeds bitterness that can degenerate to open conflagration.
Conflicts and violence have never been ideal fertilizers for development. We should heal ourselves of political insensitiveness and rascality and be humane enough to treat ourselves of our political glaucoma. We were once brothers before being partitioned into interest groups called political parties.