Delta leaders on Monday expressed gratitude to Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan for taking the state out of the woods and placing it on the world map for good. They also thanked him for running a transparent and accountable government.
“Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan has performed excellently to the envy of his foes that are now bent on pulling him down. He has not misappropriated public funds and will never do it” the leaders, under the aegis of the People’s Movement, said on Monday.
In a statement issued in Lagos by the Director of Communications of the Peoples Movement, Mrs. Ibifuro Tatua, the leaders eulogized Uduaghan for being above board in the discharge of his duties.
The leaders, who described allegations of using phantom companies to siphon funds from the state treasury, running the state only with family members and others as false, challenged MPROD to mention the names of the phantom companies.
“These are the handiwork of the governor’s political enemies who are bent on tarnishing the name and good image of the governor and also creating further distractions from his focused and principled leadership style,” they said
The leaders who took time to correct the half-truths and dangerous insinuations contained in the petition of the Movement for the Protection of the Rights of Deltans (MPROD), described members of the group as unscrupulous mischief makers. They advised them to visit the state for stock taking.
“The petition is wide off the mark and misconceived. It is also extremely contradictory in a number of areas, thus exposing the high level of ignorance of the architects about the true state of affairs in Delta State.
The leaders while advising MPROD members and other enemies of the state to be more decent with their choice of words in addressing Governor Uduaghan, said the governor in the last six years focused on administering the State, with the fear of God and for the good of the people.
“When we look at the scorecard of Uduaghan, what readily comes to mind is how he has performed. The administration’s programmes are felt in the three senatorial districts. Delta is one of the few states where salaries are being paid as and when due. The traditional institution has received a boost and respect under the administration. Uduaghan has relentlessly pursued a vigorous policy for provision of social facilities and infrastructure. The administration has done a lot in the areas of roads development. Within six years of the present administration, several rural and urban roads have been developed. The state has a more motorable network of roads than it had six years ago. On the education turf, Uduaghan has reminded people of the state that investment in that sector is the only way to control and stem the tide of youth restiveness.
“The government has given scholarship to thousands to enable them further their education in various schools within and outside the country. The government has arrested the drift in the education sector through provision of necessary learning aids, including books, laboratory equipment, computers and internet services. The government has renovated many schools in the rural and urban areas. Uduaghan has made modest development in terms of health sector delivery to the people. All the general hospitals have been rehabilitated. The out of stock syndrome, which had crippled hospitals efficiency in other states, has already been confined to the dustbins. Drugs are constantly purchased and distributed to hospitals and other health institutions in the state.
Delta State is wearing a positive look. Only a blind would not see the total transformation of the state by the present administration.
Insisting that the governor’s dogged commitment to principles in the practice of politics, the rule of law and the best democratic tradition of fairness and justice were some of the attributes that brought him into collision with the enemies of democracy and development in the state, the leaders said “Delta State has never had it so good in terms of provision of amenities and infrastructure since the creation of the state”
“Uduaghan is a caring governor. He believes in merit and places top priority on the welfare of the people. His administration follows due process in the award of contracts including competitive bidding and processing through the various Ministerial Tenders Boards before the State Executive Council gives the final approval. This is the standard. It is laughable to conclude that some contracts were given without consideration for due process” they said.
Dismissing the allegation that funds from the (South South) Crude Account were squandered on frivolous parties, talk shows, summits and seminars”, the leaders thanked Governor Uduaghan for committing a lot of funds in state projects, human capacity building and security.
“There is state presence in all the communities. Uduaghan is not misappropriating state funds. He wants the best for the state. He has reasons for sacking the Finance Commissioner, Bernard Okumagba, and replacing him with a highly competent World Bank staff, Mr. Okpara.
On the choice of the next governor, the leaders said Uduaghan has a right to support anybody.
“The governor has right to examine the present situation and the emerging political scenario in the state and the entire country. He has right to endorse whoever he wants in 2015”.
Praising Uduaghan for elevating politics beyond the mundane levels of wrangling, greed and selfishness, the leaders appealed to journalists and politicians to protect Uduaghan from undue harassment by self-seeking elements whose stock in trade is to hide under the banner of the media to bring down their imaginary or perceived opponents.
“Leaders at whatever level must demonstrate a certain degree of decency and exemplary conduct. Desperate politicians, those without ideas and popular goodwill are running away from real issues and resorting to character assassination and personal abuse. These people are not united by the common desire to move Delta State forward but to bring down Governor Uduaghan and his unprecedented record of performance.
They appealed to those generating rumours and spreading lies at home and abroad to join hands with Uduaghan in the onerous task of moving the state forward.
“With your continued support, understanding and cooperation, Uduaghan will firmly expand on the gains recorded so far. By May 30, 2015, Uduaghan shall leave behind worthy legacies that will put Delta State firmly on the irreversible path of meaningful growth and development,” the leaders said.