Bayelsa land not for Ruga ― Gov Dickson
•Development In Bayelsa amazing ― Gen Abdulsalami Abubakar
The Governor of Bayelsa State, Hon Seriake Dickson, yesterday declared that the land of Ijaw people is strictly for development purposes and not for the Federal Government proposed Rural Grazing Area (RUGA) program.
A statement by the Special Adviser, Media Relations, Mr Fidelis Soriwei, stated that Dickson, made the comment while speaking during the official launch of the 200 hectares New Yenagoa City project at the DSP Alamieyeseigha Banquet Hall, Yenagoa on Wednesday.
“The area set aside for the New Yenagoa project is serene with an alluring waterfront, part of which is reserved for former presidents whose activities have impacted positively on our people and state.
“The city is available for every Bayelsan and Ijaws irrespective of party affiliations and all Nigerians of goodwill. Here in Bayelsa, we don’t have land for RUGA but for development.” He said
Also speaking, Former Nigerian Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, who served as chairman of the event, expressed surprise at the fast rate of development of Bayelsa and its capital, Yenagoa, under the leadership of Seriake Dickson.
The former Head of State whose administration voluntarily handed over political power to a civilian administration in 1999 also performed the groundbreaking ceremony for the planned New Yenagoa City.
Describing Yenagoa as one of the fastest-growing cities in the country, the former Head of State noted that when the project is completed, Yenagoa would be a choice destination for investors and tourists.
He said, “I thank His Excellency for inviting me to this occasion. Indeed it is very delightful to come and see the work you have been doing for the last eight years.
“I was talking to my friend when we were coming here that, I can’t believe that Bayelsa and Yenagoa, in particular, will grow to the level I’m seeing today.
“I will like to say without any contradiction that Yenagoa is one of the fastest-growing cities in Nigeria today and I want to congratulate you and all those who have made the groundwork for this city possible.
“Your vision for the New Yenagoa City is indeed a laudable one and may your vision come true. Let me on behalf of all the people who are here congratulate you and your team for your vision.
“On behalf of the former Presidents, I thank you for the surprise gifts of parcels of land at the waterfront of the new city. With what we have seen in the video clips, Dubai will no longer be the destination when this comes to pass, it will be the New Yenagoa City.”
Speaking also, Former President of the country, Dr Goodluck Jonathan who said the dream of building a new Yenagoa City has been on the drawing board from the creation of the state, saluted the efforts of Governor Dickson for working towards the actualization of the project.
Dr Jonathan also noted that, if leaders of the state remain united and contribute their quota to the development of the state, the New City would be completed in no distant future.
He emphasized the need for the incoming administration to consolidate on the achievements of Governor Dickson to ensure continuity and build confidence in investors.
“Dubai was a piece of the desert but today it is the world market. Yenagoa also has a lot of potentials to become another Dubai.
“I have to thank you and your team for this and that is the way to go. I still believe as long as our leaders have dreams and visions it will not take us more than 25 years to get to where we want to be.
“It depends on one government taking over from the other and building on certain good projects instead of abandoning them.”
Governor Dickson used the opportunity to sign and present certificates of occupancy to Gen. Abubakar, Dr Jonathan and his wife, Chairman of the state Traditional Rulers Council, King Alfred Diete Spiff.
The Governor who also issued Certificate of Occupancy (C-of-O) to the state Chief Judge, Speaker and to all service commanders for their official accommodation, explained that plots are also reserved for former governors of the state.
King Alfred Diete Spiff, Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, Engr. Simbi Wabote, Chairman, Board of Trustees, Maj. Gen. Paul Alaowei Toun and an Israeli investor Mr Ayal Raz were among those who lauded the project and its potentials in their respective goodwill messages.