By Simon Ebegbulem
BENIN—DESPITE the disagreement between the Bini and Ijaw in Gelegele community, Ovia North-East Local Government Area, Edo State, Governor Godwin Obaseki has expressed commitment to pursuing the development of a seaport in Gelegele, saying the project will help realize the creation of 200,000 jobs he promised the people of the state.
Obaseki, who spoke in Benin City, also vowed to construct and rehabilitate at least 3,000 kilometers of roads in the state during his tenure.
He said: “The contract for many of the roads we advertised are being awarded so that the contractors can take advantage of the dry season.
“We are also emphasising maintenance of existing roads by strengthening the agency which will now work more closely with the local government authorities.
“As part of our efforts to stop human trafficking and illegal migration, my government is currently working on a project with the Federal Government to assist people to migrate legally and properly. Our skills centres will offer training, certification and visas under well defined structures which will allow those who want to travel to do so safely and with dignity.”
In our new transport master plan, in addition to continuing the rehabilitation and construction of major and arterial roads, we are working on new user-friendly road signs, appropriate house numberings, restocking the Comrade Bus fleet with 75 new buses, and completed the designs of new all-purpose modern bus terminals.
¨We are confident that the construction of the Central Benin City Bus Terminal will commence in the first quarter of this year. Other projects that will be pursued in the New Year include the development of the Gelegele Seaport. We are committed to the realisation of this project because of the several socio-economic benefits that are tied to it, namely jobs and a gateway for exporting processed products from our industries and the allied businesses it will attract to the state.
¨We were all pained to read harrowing accounts of the experiences of the returnees and even more pained to see videos of their unfortunate experiences on the internet. We are cooperating with the Federal Government, development partners and other stakeholders to execute a comprehensive strategy to identity, track, arrest and prosecute all those involved in this heinous trade. We have also put in place a comprehensive welcome, documentation, counselling, training, rehabilitation and empowerment programme for the returnees. I am glad to inform you all that we are recording great successes on all fronts.
¨As part of our efforts to stop human trafficking and illegal migration, my government is currently working on a project with the Federal Government to assist people to migrate legally and properly. Our skills centres will offer training, certification and visas under well defined structures which will allow those who want to travel to do so safely and with dignity¨ he stated.