Senator Ifeanyi Okowa,the Executive Governor of Delta State on Wednesday said states in the South-South region are united in the quest for restructuring of the country.
Okowa stated this in Asaba during his quarterly interaction with journalists.
He said there was need to restructure the country to pave the way for the devolution of more powers to states and local governments.
The Governor, who is the Chairman, South-South Governors’ Forum, said Nigeria was not making progress as it ought to because the issues of restructuring and resource control had yet to be addressed.
He disclosed that restructuring and resource control as well as security would be exhaustively discussed at a meeting between a Presidential delegation and leaders of the South-South billed for Port Harcourt on Friday.
Responding to a question on the Gold deposit in Zamfara and the decision by the state government to control the resource,, the Governor said there were Acts of the National Assembly that dealt with oil production and solid minerals.
“We cannot apply laws in such a manner that they become discriminatory because you cannot mine solid minerals somewhere in Zamfara and you can’t allow Niger Delta to manage their oil,’’ he said.
On complaints from oil producing communities, he said there was an ongoing process to ensure that what got to the communities became statutory and enshrined in the Constitution or in the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).
Okowa said Governors in the South-South were doing well in managing the 13 per cent derivation fund to their states.
The Governor hinted that the state government might employ more teachers in the first quarter of 2021 to cater for the news technical colleges being constructed across the state.
He said his administration had completed many road projects, including the Ovwor-Effurun-Otor bridge in Ughelli South Council Area, adding that government had also awarded contracts for two major storm drainage projects in Warri, Uvwie and environs.
On tourism, Okowa stated that his administration was constructing a Leisure Park and Film Village on Illah road, Asaba, adding that most movie producers woild be heading to Asaba on completion of the project in May, 2021.
In his remarks, Chairman of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Delta State Council, Comrade Michael Ikeogwu, thanked the Governor for the cordials relationship between the media and the government, and assured that journalists in the state would continue to perform their role as watchdogs of the society.
By: Ike Abiagom