Governor Seriake Dickson is the only governor in Nigeria who was sworn in on Valentine’s Day.
Penultimate Friday, while other people were celebrating Valentine, Dickson was explaining what his administration had been doing in the last two years and where he was taking the state to in the years ahead. He was also asked how he feel to be the governor of Mr. President.
It is very exciting to be the governor of the President or Vice President. There are governors who even complain about having the National Chairman of the party from their state and I often tell them that they should zone the office to Bayelsa if they don’t want because I have room for it. The good thing about Bayelsa is that, as a result of many years of political interaction with President Jonathan, he has become more than my President and has become my elder brother and political leader.
There is a wonderful synergy, wonderful chemistry and understanding between us at the personal level. His own style of non-interference in what I do makes it very easy for me. He is a gentleman who believes in due process and is very formal and cares passionately about this state and this region as he does for Nigeria. And, to me, having a President or Vice President from the state is like having an umbrella or someone you can run to for advice, counsel and support.
I know that because of the politics that is going in Nigeria, a lot of people could find it unsettling where the President knows all the people you know and have direct access to the same people you know. But, for me, I quite frankly enjoy having a President from my state and I even want to have more presidents from Bayelsa because it makes the burden of leadership lighter and easier.
It gives me some additional responsibility but makes me more secure and confident and not unsettled by the traditional rivalry that comes with such positions. I am confident of what I am doing and I have nothing to fear. It’s been very exciting experience for me.
READ THE FULL INTERVIEW IN SUNDAY VANGUARD