By Tony Obiechina, ABUJA
The new Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, and the Minister of State, Mr. Festus Keyamo, SAN, on Wednesday assumed duty at the Ministry with the promise to leave huge footprints in the development of the Niger Delta region.
Speaking at a reception organized by the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Didi Walson-Jack, and management staff of the ministry, the Ministers expressed their readiness to urgently address the developmental needs of the Niger Delta region.
Senator Akpabio, said being from the Niger Delta region, it was incumbent on him to take the developmental challenges more seriously, especially in the areas of capacity building, inadequate infrastructure, poverty alleviation, youth restiveness, entrepreneurship, environmental degradation, amongst others.
According to a statement by the Patricia Deworitshe, Head, Press & Public Relations Unit of the Ministry, the minister promised that those challenges negatively affecting the people of the region would be tackled head on.
Akpabio pledged to work harmoniously with the Minister of State to ensure that they lived up to the expectations of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Akpabio added that he loved leaving marks anywhere he worked and called on staff and management of the Ministry to ‘put all hands on deck to ensure that our developmental efforts yield fruits’.
In his remarks, the Minister of State, Mr. Festus Keyamo, SAN, thanked the staff of the Ministry for the warm reception accorded them and pledged to give his best in boosting the confidence imposed in him through their appointment. He expressed his eagerness to get to work.
Speaking earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Didi Walson-Jack, expressed confidence that the appointment of the new Ministers would change the narrative of the Niger Delta region.
She also pledged the commitment of management and staff to the actualization of the vision of the present administration as well as the formulation and execution of policies, projects and programmes geared towards addressing the challenges of the region.
The Permanent Secretary added that to achieve the vision and goals of the Ministry, there was the need for it to solicit for financial, material and human resources, through partnerships, leverage on Corporate Social Responsibility as well as Public -Private Partnerships.
She also suggested that the Ministry worked with Federal, States and Local Governments, the private sector, development partners, Non-Governmental Organisations, (NGOs), Civil Society Organisations, amongst others. To ensure the Ministers succeeded, she urged management and staff to work as a team.
Walson – Jack also expressed hope that the Ministers would not just pass through the Ministry but leave indelible marks and ‘a legacy of uncommon development in the Niger Delta region.’