Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has maintained that the federal government has no interest in the development of oil-rich Bayelsa State despite the state huge contributions to Nigeria’s economic survival.
Dickson, who stated this when he made a ‘historic’ drive through the over 100-kilometre Sagbama-Ekeremor new constructed road amid cheers from jubilant crowds, noted that it was also part of the reason the strategic road was abandoned for 40 years by the federal government.
The road, which has several bridges currently being built, it was learnt, had been in the budget in the last four decades without any work to justify it.
However, residents of the town where the Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, hails from were delighted seeing vehicles for the first time in their communities.
A statement issued by the governor’s Special Adviser on Media Relations, Fidelis Soriwei, noted that while with a crowd at the Ekeremor Civic Centre, the governor described the road project as strategic not only to the Ekeremor people but also for the socio-economic development of the state and the Ijaw nation.
“He (the governor) decried the federal government lack of interest in developing the state despite its huge contributions to the sustenance of the national economy as portrayed in the abandonment of the road conceived over 40 years ago.
“The governor, who charged the people to shun acts inimical to the peace and development of the area, noted that Ekeremor is fast becoming an urban centre with the new road.
“He assured the people that the ongoing electrification project to connect the community to the national grid would be completed before the end of this year,” the statement noted.
Dickson added: “We took the road to Aleibiri last year. Today, we are here because we have constructed all the bridges on the road without disturbances. This road is very strategic not only to Ekeremor but to Bayelsa State and Ijaw nation as a whole.
“I will do everything within my reach to turn this place to an urban centre. Already, I have awarded the contract to connect Ekeremor to the national grid and work is already ongoing.”
Meanwhile, the governor has received several defectors from the All Progressives Congress (APC) led by Mr. Felix Lokpobiri, a cousin to the minister.
In his remarks, Lokpobiri expressed happiness on the road project, noting that with the latest defection, there was no longer any opposition in the area.
“I can say that we were in bondage in the APC, and we are glad that we are out of that sterile party,” he said.
Dickson had earlier paid a visit to the paramount ruler of Ekeremor community, Chief Agbodo Gbaseimo, where the elated monarch conferred him with the chieftaincy title of “Ebikonbowei” which means ‘one who brings good things’