Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, has flayed Nigeria’s current challenges, saying that it goes beyond roads and infrastructure.
Dr. Saraki who spoke to journalists in Ibusa at a thanksgiving mass of the Senator representing Delta North, Senator Peter Nwaobushi, at the weekend held at St. Augustine Catholic Church, regretted that Nigeria’s challenges grow by the day, adding that the peace and unity of Nigeria as a country cannot be negotiated.
His words: “In spite of the numerous challenges Nigeria is currently faced with, and different agitations, the unity and peace of our noble country Nigeria cannot be negotiated, we want to assure Nigerians as the highest lawmaking body that we will continue to seek for prayers and justice” While paying glowing tribute to the people of Delta State, Senator Saraki expressed hopes of improvement in the current Nigeria’s recession, saying: “I think it is obvious that the recession has taken tolls on Nigerians but our hopes and desire is that there will be improvement soon, and Nigerians will feel the dividends of democracy”. On the purported rift between Presidency and Senate, Dr. Saraki said the issue would be amicably resolved for the interest of Nigeria as one country, adding: “I do not see any tension on the disagreement and I assure that it would be amicably resolved.”
Expectedly, the recent face-off between the presidency and the upper chamber of the National Assembly to the extent that the Senate has concluded not to confirm any nominee of the president for public office requiring such confirmation by the lawmakers was an eloquent testimony that the compliment mutual trust cum respect that existed from the outset, and the letter of the constitution with regards to the roles of the two organs of government may have been improved.
Despite clear provisions in the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), giving eloquent expressions to the twin principles of separation of powers and checks and balances, it appears that some of the players on the nation’s political chess board are still entangled in the vortex of power tussle and showmanship that tend to rubbish this time-honoured concept aimed at checking tyranny.
Meanwhile, the Delta State Government has assured Umutu community in Ukwuani Local Government Area and Ovre-Eku and other communities in Ethiope East Local Government Area that it will take necessary steps towards finding lasting solution to the lingering boundary (land) dispute between Umutu and Urhonigbe community in Edo State and between Ovre-Eku, other communities in Delta and Edo state.
The Secretary to the Delta State Government (SSG), Hon. Festus Ovie Agas, gave the assurance when he led a high powered delegation on a fact-finding visit to Umutu and Eku communities at the weekend.
He reiterated the irrevocable commitment of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa administration to the safety of lives and property of all Deltans, adding that “we will work with all relevant information/documents and also liaise with the National Boundary Commission with a view to finding lasting solutions to the lingering boundary dispute.”
He averred that the present administration has the political will to wade into the matter and advised Umutu, Ovre and other communities to remain calm and maintain the peace, reminding them that taking the laws into their hands was counter-productive.
The SSG commended the communities for their peaceful disposition over the years, despite series of attacks and provocations, assuring them that there would be light at the end of the tunnel.
“We feel your pains and sufferings. Government will not let you down. The present administration, under the watch of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa is focused and the wellbeing of the people is dear to his heart. Delta and Edo States have a cordial relationship. We will do the needful to ensure that the lingering boundary dispute is resolved amicably”.
Earlier at the palace of the Okpala-Uku of Umutu, Chief Anthony Nwachukwu, on behalf of the community had chronicled the genesis of the boundary dispute between Umutu and Urhonigbe communities and appealed to the state government to wade into the matter and put paid to the lingering boundary disputes.
He commended the state government for the fact-finding visit to Umutu, affirming that the visit has rekindled their hope as well as given them a new lease of life and the reason to believe that indeed, Governor Okowa’s administration does not toy with the wellbeing of the people.
In their separate remarks at Eku, the Chairman, Forum of Communities in Delta State sharing boundary with Edo State, Chief Abel and others narrated their ordeal and sufferings in the hands of alleged agents of Presco Oil Plc, saying that they have not only been chased away from their ancestral home, but also subjected to untold hardship, poverty and hunger as their farmlands have been forcefully taken over by the company.
They applauded the team for the visit, even as they passionately appealed to the state government to wade into the matter so as to save them from hunger and deprivation which may eventually lead to death.
It could be recalled that the fact finding visit was sequel to motions of urgent public importance moved by the Member representing Ukwuani Constituency, Hon. Alphonsus Ojo and his counterpart representing Ethiope East Constituency, Hon. Evans Iwurie concerning the lingering boundary disputes in their constituencies.