Okowa’s ‘Sermon’ On Mount Unity Hall

Sermon On The Mount’ is a bibical reference to a message that remains as inspiring as ever even after a thousand years or so after it was handed down. Delta’s Governor-Elect, Senator (Dr.) Arthur Ifeanyi Okowa, the Ekwueme, which literarily means ‘the doer’ or the man who walks the talk, last Tuesday, April 28, delivered what I call “ A Sermon from Mount Unity Hall”, a reference to Unity Hall, Government House, Asaba which served as the venue for the inauguration of two main committees for his transition to a new home and office, the New Government House come May 29. Also inaugurated was a third committee tagged the Committee on Night of Prayer.
The speech, one of the firsts from the Governor-Elect in Dr. Okowa was a measured and timely one to members of the state’s ruling party, who had all benefitted from continuity of the PDP administrations since 1999 and still counting. Dr. Okowa told all present and viewers at home that being a member of any of the committees does not necessarily translate into a visa for the State Executive Council as appointments will be made in God’s time.
I think this reminder is quite timely as some persons had already started parading themselves as automatic commissioners and Advisers in the incoming administration, but if that is a dream, it is okay as dreams could come true but none should be distracted from the crucial role of continuing to rally around the Governor-Elect, with no strings attached, as we all did during the electioneering campaigns and leave the rest to God.
I listened to the points made by Dr. Okowa: “It will not be business as usual when an appointee becomes both the contractor and the giver of the contract.” Also, “The fact that some 98 Deltans made the list of committees for a seamless transition does not mean they worked better than others during the campaigns.”
I think Dr. Okowa’s words are re-assuring and lends full credibility to his mantra of “Prosperity For All Deltans” and also a proof of his Pan Delta mandate. The committees would advice on government structure, size and assets and liabilites of the state and the situation report on the stage of programmes and projects of both on-going and completed projects.
The committees he inaugurated are the Technical Committee on Programmes, Projects Development and Governance, the Committee on Handover and the Committee on Night of Praise. The Night of Praise Committee is led by present Commissioner and Nollywood actor, Richard Mofe-Damijo who will direct things in that area, while the the main transition committe is is led by the Prof. himself, Professor Sam Oyovbaire. The Handover Committee is led by Clement Ofuani, my good friend from a very long time.
The calibre of those leading the committees tells one they are some of the leading lights in the state either as former or present public office holders. But one is sure it won’t be a matter only for the ex’s as it is prosperity for all Deltans in whatever role anybody is made to play.
Delta State has a surfeit of talents in all fields of human endeavour across the three Senatorial districts for the number of commissioners representing the 25 local government areas of the state and other positions, from Advisers and Board members to et cetera.
The main essence of the transition committees, Dr. Okowa told us, is to make preparation or some kind of blue print for a smooth take-off of the incoming government after the swearing-in on May 29, 2015. They will also liase with government officials in the various ministries and extra ministerial departments on matters such as staffing of all government departments.
Dr. Okowa told the committee members who I like to refer to as the fore-runners of the incoming administration, to be diligent and co-operate with each other and other members of the party. He intoned that, “I’m asking you all to play your parts well in our desire and quest to continue to build a Delta State of our collective dreams and if you play your parts well, then a better day of prosperity for all days is within our reach.”
What I noticed in his speech was the interjection of the regular refrain, ‘By the Grace of God’ and it appears Governor Uduaghan may have rubbed-off on him in this sense of depending on God. Infact, Dr. Okowa himself recalled that it is Dr. Uduaghan who coined the accolade given to Delta State to be known as ‘THE FINGER OF GOD’.
For those of us who had been watchers of the polity for a reasonable time since 1999, one can understand the ongoing preparations of Dr. Okowa to further develop Delta as from May 29, 2015, a personal and politcal dream that has been with him. It is a justifiable dream and the wish of every oil-producing state to have its fair share of resources and development from its God-given wealth to further translate to mega projects and developments: more roads, bridges, schools, hospitals and potable water and the bouquet of requests during the campaigns to make people happy.
The burdens appear heavy but not insurmountable. Some communities had asked for a school or a stadium, they must be patient and wait for their hearts desires. I know these promises will be priotized for every community and alot would be done in the first term.
An ‘Ekwueme’, the grassroots politician, would rather fulfill his promises and it behoves on all stakeholders to subsume theirpersonal ambitions for the good of the entire state.
The ‘Okowa Sermon from Mount Unity Hall’ should be understood as a message for all those who voted for him and all Deltans in general because it would be an act of service to fully support him and his Pan Delta ‘Mandate and God-date.’ God bless Delta and its people.