Bayelsa State Governor, the Honourable Seriake Dickson on Tuesday said he champions the clamour for restructuring: true federalism, devolution of powers from the Centre to the federating units to re-examine the foundation of the country which he stressed was faulty.
The Governor said he will intensify consultations with the view to reaching a consensus for a restructured Nigeria.
While stressing that the 2019 general election is a referendum on Restructuring, he noted that only aspirants that believe in Restructuring will get the support of the Ijaw nation!
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Francis Ottah Agbo quoted Governor Dickson to have spoken on Tuesday when a high powered delegation led by the former Vice President of the country and People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Aspirant, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar paid him a courtesy call in Government House, Yenagoa.
The Governor said people of the Ijaw nation from Ondo, Edo, Delta, Rivers to Akwa Ibom states have been fully mobilized and conscientious on the importance of the 2019 general election and what it portends for restructuring.
Governor Dickson also called on well-meaning Nigerians to protect democracy and reject a one-party system because according to him it breeds dictatorship. He enjoined members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP to work closely to make the party more cohesive and virile.
Describing Alhaji Atiku, as one of the most consistent political voices for the quest for a new Nigeria, Governor Dickson assured that, Bayelsa would remain a PDP state that would fly the party’s flag at all times.
His words: “In furtherance of the sacred mandate of our people, several leaders and personalities, even across political divide are united on the need to restructure this country, return it to fiscal federalism. Few weeks ago, I had a rare interaction even with the president where I clearly conveyed the message, for the need for a restructured Nigeria.
“I want to say that in the days and weeks and months ahead, I, my brothers and sisters you see here and our leaders have resolved to carry this message to all nooks and crannies of our country. And to let people know that a restructured Nigeria is in everyone’s interest and if you want a stable, prosperous, egalitarian and sustainable Nigeria that can survive the next 200, 300 years in peace and in prosperity, then we must re-examine the foundation of our country and make necessary adjustments.
No nation is perfect, let’s not deceive ourselves that our country is perfect. Every nation is a work in progress. Other countries older than Nigeria have adjusted. Restructuring is a call for adjustments, for consultations and consensus building.”
In his remarks, former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar said he has been an advocate of true federalism, since 2004 and solicited the support of the government and people of Bayelsa State in next year’s presidential election.
Alhaji Atiku, who was accompanied by the DG of his campaign and former Governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel and former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder Godsday Orubebe, also lauded Governor Dickson on his landmark achievements, particularly the construction of a the 3.5 km runway airport project, the education and health sectors, as well as road construction, adding that, the Government House Complex is the best in the country.
“On specific performance, I will like to congratulate Governor Dickson on his landmark developmental projects. There has been no one single governor who has recorded the achievements he has made. These achievements are there for everybody to see. I have been following with keen interest your position on restructuring. As you know, I have been an advocate of restructuring since 2004 and I would like you to join me to work together towards 2019.”
The Director General of the Atiku Campaign Organization, Otunba Gbenga Daniel who also applauded Governor Dickson for his developmental strides, said Alhaji Atiku knows the challenges faced by Bayelsa and other Niger Delta states.
Describing Atiku as a detribalized leader, Otunba Daniel noted that, the former Vice President contributed significantly to the enthronement of democracy in the country and called for the support of Bayelsa delegates, ahead of the PDP convention.
Highpoints of the visit was the presentation of a book, titled, Restructuring As a Pathway to Unity and Development to Governor Dickson. The book was written by Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.