Mrs. Ebizimo Brown is the former Deputy Chief of Staff to the former Governor of Bayelsa State, Senator Seriake Dickson and currently the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate for Sagbama Constituency 3, Bayelsa State House of Assembly. She spoke to some journalists recently. ROLAND OGBONNAYA presents the excerpts…
Bayelsa is 26 now, kindly tell us from your own perspective how the journey has been after creation from old Rivers State.
Bayelsa at 26? We are finally on course in the journey of developing Bayelsa State. This state has come a long way. We can today boast of better educational standards for our growing children. A wider road network both in the state capital Yenagoa and intercity within Bayelsa State. Many towns are now motorable and progress is being made daily by the current prosperity government of Governor Douye Diri in reaching more towns through the road networks. This could go faster if we can get more federal government and local oil company support.
You have been privileged to be in government, kindly speak from the government’s direction and policies regarding where you think Bayelsa as a state should be in the next 10 years.
There is a great drive to industrialise the state and hopefully, in 10 years we would be able to see the realization of this area in which there is a great lack currently. It will be good to also have a greater presence of our local companies in major branch offices or head offices located within Bayelsa State and this will bring about better employment for our children.
As a true Bayelsan and a leader in the state, Kindly tell us details about the Bayelsa culture and why it’s different from any other state in Nigeria.
Bayelsa State has one of the richest cultures in Nigeria. We enjoy major cultural festivals across many cities and clans which are today much better celebrated with wider involvement of the people from far and wide in such local festivals. Some examples are the Seigben festivals of Amassoma, Odoni, Epie New yam festivals, lake Efi Fishing festivals, Sabagreia, and many others. These various festivals help to keep our beautiful cultural dances farming, fishing, and canoeing talents alive amongst our teaming youths. This helps to keep Bayelsa State on a level of its own compared to other states.
You are contesting for the House of Assembly in Bayelsa State, why do you think the people of your constituency trust you or should trust you?
Contesting the Bayelsa State House of Assembly is dear for my home constituency 3 Sagbama Local Government Area. My people have come to know me as I have lived and worked with them for the last decade. They are also aware of how committed I have been to the support of the government in the development at the state level and know that I will bring that commitment to the development of our constituency. They also know am always accessible and have a deep love for my people. My work ethic and skill set have been on public display for the past decade through my assignments and appointments, so you can say I am tested and trusted by my people.
What new plans and vision do you have for the people of your constituent?
Over the next four years, I have been in the Stae Assembly, I will like to see more development in my constituency. I will like to see the trade corridor to Onitsha via my constituency opened by the completion of the road network which will lead to more motorable cities. More large-scale and industrial farming in the constituency. This will lead to a better quality of life and plenty of job opportunities too. I look forward to helping to improve government awareness and raising bills that will cater to the welfare of the people of the constituency.
If you have the opportunity to stand before foreign tourists, kindly tell us how you will convince them to come and invest in your constituent.
My constituency is safe and secure very close to the east-west road which is a major thoroughfare and so goods from here will be transported without difficulty. We have the best land for rice, sweet potatoes, sugarcane fish and palm produce and general farming. Our land is fertile with minimal or no pollution. The people are warm and very receptive to visitors.
As an incoming lawmaker, how will you rate Governor Douye Diri-led’s government and what advice do you have for the government moving forward?
Senator Douye Diri has been an excellent Governor, he has displayed maturity, and remained calm and focused in his vision for the development of Bayelsa State. All his predecessor’s projects have been completed and he has started his own projects. He has a deep thirst to see Bayelsa fully developed and is on a mission to accomplish this. He has come up with programs like the prosperity walks that help him to intermingle with the grassroots weekly whilst ensuring their well-being. In three short years despite the retraction of the Covid epidemic and other challenges, he has achieved great feats for our dear state.
He started the Nembe Brass road, completed the Ekeremor road and took the Oporoma road to Angiama, and began the bridge to Oporoma. These are the three senatorial roads helping Bayelsa State to access the sea and its blue resources.
He should remain focused and continue to solicit the support of the federal government as it would help him achieve more. His calm demeanor and drive have and will help him to get more development partners.
Kindly give us your wish for Bayelsa as a state and the hope ahead.
I wish Bayelsa State a happy celebration as a state and pray this year will signify a new beginning of greater exploits and achievements of developmental strides.
Group Calls For Protection Of Journalists In Bayelsa, Imo, Kogi States
The Media Rights Agenda (MRA) has urged for necessary measures to protect journalists and other media workers during this weekend’s off-cycle elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States.
The group sent the request to the federal and state governments, as well as law enforcement and security agencies, stressing that the role of journalists in disseminating information about the electoral process is critical to ensuring free, fair, and transparent elections.
In a statement issued ahead of the elections in Lagos and signed by the Communications Officer, Media Rights Agenda, Idowu Adewale, MRA also urged journalists to be cautious and to use its existing hotline (08138755660) to report any threat or attack they may encounter during the process, as well as any obstacle.
Adewale said in the statement: “Given the pattern of heightened attacks on journalists and the media during previous elections, including the recent 2023 general elections, as well as the tense political climate in the three states in the lead-up to the elections, measures must be taken to ensure general security during the elections and provide adequate protection for journalists covering the elections.”
“Access to information allows citizens and other members of the public to have the information they need about political and electoral processes, facilitating effective public participation in elections,” he says.
“Journalists and the media play an important role in ensuring residents and other members of the public have access to information and may participate in the process.
“As part of efforts to preserve the integrity of the polls, it is also critical that the safety and well-being of these interlocutors be assured and safeguarded.”
Lamenting the increased number of attacks on journalists in the run-up to the off-cycle elections, as well as earlier this year in the run-up to the general elections, he emphasised that “a free and vibrant media is fundamental to a healthy democracy, and journalists must be able to carry out their duties without fear, coercion, or violence.” During this vital phase, MRA stands ready to assist them and assure their safety.”
Police Nab Husband, As Mother Of ‘Mummy Be Calming Down’ Boy Takes Own Life
Men from the Edo State Police Command are said to have detained Mrs. Toluige Olokoobi’s husband after he allegedly murdered her.
Olokoobi was the mother of Oreofeoluwa Lawal-Babalola, the tiny boy whose video went viral in 2020 after he pleaded with his mother, “Mummy be calming down.”
Oreofeoluwa rose to prominence on social media after a video of him crying in an attempt to confidently appeal to his mother, who chastised him, went viral.
The film inspired Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who used it to deliver an Eid-el-Kabir appeal to Muslims and Lagos people in general to remain calm during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Following that, the youngster and his family met with the governor, who praised his bravery and poise.
While little has been heard about the family in three years, heartbreaking news broke on social media on Tuesday that the boy’s mother had committed suicide.
According to an X user, Olokoobi committed suicide in Benin, the capital of Edo State, for unknown reasons.
The X user, who stated that he was present at the site on Monday afternoon, went on to say that she had refused to disclose her difficulties with anyone before committing herself.
“The woman in the viral Mummy Calm Down video has just committed suicide here in Benin,” he stated in an email.
“She refused to discuss her problems with anyone.” She abandoned three children for her husband, including the well-known Mummy Calm Down boy.”
Meanwhile, confirming Olokoobi’s death in a chat with BBC Pidgin, the spokesperson of the Edo State police command, Chidi Nwabuzor, said her husband has been arrested and detained for questioning.
Nwabuzor said the husband reported the matter to the police.
The police spokesperson quoted the husband to have said that “he came home from the market when he saw his wife hanging with rope on her neck”.
Nwabuzor said she was rushed to the hospital and then to the mortuary after she was confirmed dead. (Adapted from a Vanguard report).
Anambra: CP Aderemi Adeoye Decorates Promoted Officers With New Ranks
The Anambra State Police Command Headquarters Conference Hall was a hive of activity Thursday as CP Aderemi Adeoye took turns decorating around 18 promoted officers of the command with their new titles.
The delight of some of the officers whose wives assisted the CP in decorating their husbands with their new ranks knew no bounds, as their husbands duly saluted their wives and the CP for their new positions and responsibilities.
Obi Innocent, one of the officers elevated to the rank of Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP), whose wife joined CP Aderemi Adeoye in adorning him with his new rank, said it was wonderful that the Inspector General of Police thought him worthy.
CSP Obi Innocent, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13, Police Zonal Headquarters Ukpo, stated that his new rank was a call to service and that he would do his best to uphold the charge given to them by CP Aderemi Adeoye to respect and protect the citizenry’s fundamental rights in the discharge of their new assignments.
Charity Akharame, who was honoured with the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) and was the only female officer among the 18 promoted officers decorated with new ranks, said it was not an easy feat but she was grateful to be among those who were decorated with their new ranks.
DSP Charity Akharame, the officer in charge of stores in the Anambra State Police Command, recalled how she began as a Police Constable and worked her way up to her current position as Deputy Superintendent of Police.
She stated that as a very disciplined police officer, she would follow the Police Commissioner’s directions regarding respect for all and sundry in the fulfillment of her constitutional obligations.
Jane-Frances Obi, one of the spouses of the officers elevated to the level of CSP, stated that being the wife of a police officer was not an easy assignment. As a result, she recommended any lady who is married to a police officer to be patient and understanding because the job is quite demanding.
Jane-Frances Obi, whose husband is Innocent Obi, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13 Ukpo, believes the promotion is a reward for years of being patient, understanding, and standing in for them when they are not present.
Meanwhile, Emenike Chinenyenwa, who was decorated with the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) and presented a vote of appreciation, expressed deep gratitude to the IGP and the Chairman of the Police Service Commission for considering them worthy of being adorned in their new ranks.
ACP Emenike, the officer in charge of Medicals, stated that the elevation comes with increased responsibility and that they will work harder in their new tasks.
CP Aderemi Adeoye praised the current promotion winners in his remarks, noting that two aspects make the police career very interesting and eventful. He stated that one is for promotion and the other is for positions.
CP Adeoye, on the other hand, urged the newly honored officers to develop more empathy, compassion, care, and dedication in the performance of their jobs.
The police chief insisted that newly promoted officers must first recognise that they share the same humanity as others, and as a result, they must treat all people with dignity and protect their fundamental human rights at all times.
CP Aderemi Adeoye stressed that without the enormous roles of spouses, they wouldn’t have been successful in their careers. He therefore congratulated all the promoted and prayed that God gives them good health to enjoy the new ranks and the energy to discharge the responsibilities of their new offices.
- Source: Independent