Theme: Fast-tracking Development and Peace of the Niger Delta Region: Options and Prospects.
Commencement of Technical Meeting
The National Council Meeting on Niger Delta took off officially today at the International Centre for Culture and Events, with the Technical Meeting session declared open by the Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluuwarotimi Akeredolu, represented by the Deputy Governor, Hon. (Barr.) Agboola Ajayi.
In his keynote address, Akeredolu urged all institutions saddled with the development of the region to brace up to the challenge, to forestall further violence in the oil-rich region.
While decrying the slow pace of development of the Niger Delta region, the Governor pledged to ensure a sustained peaceful coexistence between oil companies operating in the State and their host communities.
The Governor recounted the achievements of his administration in the Oil producing areas of the State since assumption of office to include; payment of bursaries to students, construction and rehabilitation of roads, schools and bridges to mention a few.
Earlier, The Chairman of Local Organising Committee, Hon. (Barr.) Olugbenga Edema, in his welcome address, stated the objective of the gathering as a means of having and evolving a workable, implementable and sustainable approach to actualizing physical and economic transformation of the Niger Delta region.
The LOC Chairman expressed optimism about the goals of development and the capacity to deliver on these goals based on the political will of the current administration of His Excellency, President Mohammadu Buhari which he has demonstrated in the development of the Niger Delta region.
According to Hon. Edema, it is expected at the end of the meeting that the presentations and robust deliberations of the technical sessions will produce adequate knowledge on both the metaphorical and literal fast track upon which development and peace agenda for the Niger Delta can conveniently be set.
Present at the event were: The Secretary to the State Government of Ondo State, Hon. Ifedayo Abegunde, Commissioner for Lands and Housing, Mr. Donald Ojogo, Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Funsho Esan, Senior Special Assistant on Riverine and Community relations, Hon. Felix Rawa, Commissioner designate on the board of NDDC, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa and Dignitaries from all walks of the Oil producing sector.
The Technical meeting sessions after series of deliberations and brainstorming ended with a cocktail. The colorful and remarkable occasion brought prominent members of the society together.