April 8, 2010

We ‘ll fast track project implementation – Orubebe

By Chris Ochayi & Samuel Orji

ABUJA— Newly appointed Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder Godsday Orubebe had said the ministry will open offices in the nine states which comprise the region and make the existing ones functional with a view to fast-tracking implementations of development projects.

Elder Orubebe who stated this while taking over the affairs of the ministry alongside his Minister of State, Mr. Samuel Odeh, from the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Yahaya Abdullahi in Abuja, said, this effort would improve interaction between the ministry and the region, which will usher in radical transformation of Niger Delta region.

Elder Orubebe noted that project implementation in the oil-rich region would be sped-up if the ministry would operate from functional departments in each of the states, stressing further that efforts towards development of the Niger Delta region must be fast-tracked so as to give the region a facelift before the end of the present administration, few months from now.

The former Minister of State in the ministry pledged to work assiduously to deliver on their mandate of ensuring peace and development in the troubled region.

According to him, the critical areas that needed urgent attention in the region were job creation for the people, environmental protection and rehabilitation, infrastructural development, skill impartation on youths and women, and general economic empowerment of the people.

“For me, the transformation of the Niger Delta is possible because we have gone round the world and we have seen things for ourselves, all that we need is commitment and interest. To achieve this, we virtually have little or no time and this means that we have barely three months to lay the solid foundation to show that we are committed.

“Peace, permanent peace in the Niger Delta must be realised, we are going to work day and night to achieve this…state offices are going to be made functional so that issues concerning the each state will be discussed there. The offices will be like departments of the ministry and the ministry will be sending people to those offices from time to time.”