By Samuel Oyadongha
YENAGOAâ€”The Ijaw in diaspora yesterday challenged Acting President Goodluck Jonathan not to go back in his promise to revive the fortunes of the country.
While acknowledging the enormity of the task ahead, the group urged the Acting President to tackle the intractable Niger Delta crisis by addressing the fundamental causes of discontent in the region, electoral reforms to strengthen the nation’s democracy and good governance, power generation to support industrialization programmes and road infrastructure development to support commerce and industry.
The group also challenged the Acting President to strengthen the nation anti graft agencies if it must embark on a credible anti-corruption crusade to make visible the dividends of democracy as well as pursue a new partnership with states and local governments to promote food production and public health.
The Ijaw in diaspora under the aegis of Ijaw Foundation, in a statement signed by its President, Dr. Ebipamone Nanakumo made available to Vanguard in Yenagoa urged the Acting President to be courageous and decisive in writing a fresh history for the nation; firm but fair in the enforcement of the rule of law; and honest and just in discharging the duties bestowed upon him by the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
It thanked Nigerians for supporting the joint declaration of the Senate and the House of Representatives to resolve the leadership vacuum and, thus, save our nation from ridicule among the comity of nations.
The statement read in part: â€œWe, the members of Ijaw Foundation, sons and daughters of the Ijaw Nation residing at home and in the Diaspora, congratulate you, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, on your historic assumption of the office of Acting President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces.
â€œWe are very proud of the manner in which you handled yourself and the country in the last two very trying months and commend you for having conducted yourself with utmost dignity and sincere patriotism. You allowed the constitutional and democratic processes to play themselves out, enabling all Nigerian stakeholders to contribute to the dialogue concerning the resolving of the constitutional issue.
â€œYou maintained self control even as the judiciary carried out its role as one of the three branches of government, thereby, reinforcing the separation of powers which is an essential element of a functioning democratic system of government.â€