5 Mar



Bayelsa State Governor, Hon. Seriake Dickson on Wednesday received the newly inaugurated Executive council members of the Ijaw Youth Council, (IYC), and called for collaborative efforts in the fight against kidnapping and other related vices in the area.

Addressing the youth at an occasion which had in attendance, the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta matters, Hon. Kingsley Kuku, Governor Dickson stressed the need for them to channel their energies to useful ventures that would better their lots and project the interest of the Ijaw nation.

Bayelsa State Governor, Hon. Seriake Dickson (M), flanked by the newly inaugurated Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) President, Comrade Udengs Eradiri (L), and the Presidential Adviser on Niger-Delta Matters, Hon. Kingsley Kuku, shortly after the formal presentation of the new executive members of the Youth body to the Governor, at the Exco Chambers, Banquet Hall, Government House, Yenagoa.

He restated his administration’s commitment to working for the maintenance of security and peace not only in Ijaw land but the entire nation.

His words” let me remind all the youths of this state and Ijaw nation to desist from those kinds of activities, whether it is piracy, kidnapping and oil bunkering that is now destroying our already fragile and compromised environment, because we have a major challenge in the sector.

Condemning acts of thuggery, be it political or otherwise, the Governor warned the youth against any act that is capable of truncating the nation’s hard won democracy.

Making reference to his involvement in politics, the Governor said, ‘I became Governor without buying a single bullet. I didn’t have to set up any killer squad or group of cultists to pursue anybody. And that is the system we are propagating and I will like to solicit your cooperation so that our youths will not be used for political purposes and be dumped after elections”.

Alluding to the forthcoming 2015 general elections, the Bayelsa State Governor urged the Ijaws to step up their efforts at fraternizing with other ethnic groups across the country to actualize their overriding interests.

According to him, “we will continue to use opportunities like this to call on our people to rise to their responsibility of building cohesion, unity and harmony.

“Because if people say we are a small and insignificant group and yet one of us occupies the foremost national position that is buffeted from all corners, then common sense should tell you that, this is the time to unite. And that is why I want to specially commend the understanding and cooperation shown by contestants for the various offices.

“I’ve always said that the INC and IYC will not be allowed to play a political role in Bayelsa State, because it is the home and Jerusalem of the Ijaw nation. Political contest in Bayelsa State will be resolved through other means than resort to these our revered organs because we don’t want to distract them. But we will mobilise them to realize other higher political objectives.

“There is a political imperative now and so the Ijaw nation will mobilise all our resources to protect our vested political interest which for now remains the protection of the presidency”.

While, assuring the new IYC leadership of his support, Governor Dickson pledged to provide operational vehicles and build a befitting secretariat for the youth organisation at Boro town in Kaiama, headquarters of the Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Government Area.

Also speaking, the President of the Ijaw Youth Council, Comrade Udengs Eradiri assured the Governor of the organization’s preparedness to collaborate with Government in tackling the issue of oil theft, not only in Bayelsa state but the entire Niger Delta region.

He noted that “oil bunkering is a global phenomenon, especially in Bayelsa state that is making our resources to dwindle every day, every month. We can’t as a people, be the ones that will be creating the problems that will affect us tomorrow. So, as IYC, we want to ensure that we mobilize our people and educate our communities to let them know that what they are doing is inimical to us as a people.

“We want to also work with Government to fashion out a new way of addressing the oil theft that is going on in our area.


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