- More facts are emerging on the recent meeting of the Southern Governors Forum in Asaba, Delta state
- The host governor for the forum, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, says resolutions from the meeting are geared towards uniting Nigerians
- The governor noted that there is a perceived injustice by many groups in the country, hence a dialogue to discuss pressing issues is needed
Asaba - Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta on Thursday, June 10 said the Southern Governors Forum's call for national dialogue was to discuss various issues and challenges currently confronting the country.
Governor Okowa made the comment when he received the national coordinator and members of the Chartered Institute of Information and Strategy Management led by Dr. Mustapha Olayinka, at Government House, Asaba.
According to him, there were many agitations for secession due to perceived injustice in the polity.
He explained that the proposed national dialogue would discuss and resolve the agitations in the interest of the unity of the country.
A statement sent to Legit.ng by the Delta state government quoted him as saying:
“We need to be able to accommodate those voices and that is why the Southern Governors’ Forum actually did call for a national dialogue because when people sit together to dialogue with themselves, they are able to speak their inner minds, they are able to find ways of resolving.”
National dialogue as a solution to Nigeria's quagmire
In a Facebook post shedding more light on his comments, Governor Okowa wrote:
To promote unity, peace, and progress across the country, we must consider holding a national dialogue to discuss ways that we can resolve the rising agitations from different quarters.
He added that there were many agitations for secession due to perceived injustice in the polity.
Devolution of powers as a means to addressing agitations
Governor Okowa had on Thursday, June 3 advocated for the devolution of powers to states and local governments to stop overburdening the federal government with many responsibilities.
According to him, the federal government is overburdened with many responsibilities in the exclusive list, making it encumbered and inefficient.
He stated that states and local governments were closer to the people and required more funds to execute life-changing projects that would be beneficial to the people.
In a related development, Governor Okowa has said that for Nigeria to truly develop as a nation, there must be a partnership between government and the people, predicated on equity, fairness, and justice.
The governor stated this at a state banquet in honour of retiring chief judge of Delta state, Justice Marshal Umukoro, on Saturday night, May 22 in Government House, Asaba.
He said that in such partnership, consideration of equity and rights of all was paramount and that the people must be treated fairly and equitably in all dealings.