Nigeria: A Journey So Far in Governance

9 July 2020
opinion

Yenagoa — Nature, a ruthlessly effective force, is a perfect example of the undeniable parallel drawn between time and quality. A maize plant takes a relatively smaller time to germinate, mature and bear fruits. It produces lovely corn cubs useful in so many ways in its season. The plant itself dries away in hope that the field is cleared again to be inpregnated with new seeds carrying the hopes of the next harvest. A mango plant on the other hand takes very a long time to germinate, mature and become a full grown tree ready to bear fruit. Often times this is quite frustrating for a farmer that doesn't understand the marvelous process unfolding before him.

In due time, the mango tree brings forth delicious fruits also useful in its season but more importantly the tree itself still stands tall and even still growing in size and vigour, only needing to bloom again and again in due seasons. This is due to the work done underground by nature, which took a considerable time before launching out a plant that would have strong roots capable to stand the test of time and various conditions.

The Douye Diri-led government of Bayelsa State understands this relationship between time and quality and only trusts the good people of Bayelsa to be that farmer that understands the unfolding process. There is assurance of a superb work going on underground to facilitate a manifestation of quality results that will stand the test of time. Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives, according to William A. Foster.

Surely it is upon this premise that Governor Diri has chosen to leave a legacy of carefully planned and executed projects. This need has necessitated profitable dialogue with investors from various industries to make them see why Bayelsa is best for beneficial investments. Although these moves are getting increasingly tasking considering the challenges being faced at the moment, the government is unrelenting and there are indications of the positive coming out of these talks as Bayelsa prepares to be open to a world of immense opportunities and development.

One basic prerequisite for investment, growth and development is security. Governor Diri understood this priority early on; that is why checkmating the problem of insecurity was one of the first play made on the chess board of governance. The security status of the state has improved tremendously in such a short time. Reduction in crime and violence is a testimony clearly given. Upon resumption of office, the governor in his inaugural speech, clearly stated the need and moved for reconciliation of any and all aggrieved bodies for the good of the state. This was made practical as he has used his position to facilitate reconciliation between clashing clans, communities and bodies within the state.

Indeed, this administration has shown it is not just all bravado but well equipped for action. For instance, the timely intervention of the governor brokered peace between Agudama and Akenfa communities following serious quarrels over land matters. The government through the chief of staff, Chief Benson Agadaga, also mediated between a community in Ekeremor local government and a neighboring community in Delta State which were on the verge of serious communal crisis. The swift intervention of government in the clashes between cult groups in the evirons of Agudama-Epie community, is another show of commitment to a safer Bayelsa as he succeeded in extinguishing brewing tension and unrest in the area, with the masterminds arrested.

The administration moved to improve the Doo Akpor, the state owned arm of the police force, by providing some security hardware and stipends to boost morale; it followed up with the donation of buses and financial support to the Bayelsa State vigilante service to help carry out their duties effectively. Peace and stability are magnets for investments and development all of which will surely manifest in due time. The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership. Governor Diri has made it clear that he is not interested in building powerful people but powerful institutions. This clearly indicates a yearning for quality and long-lasting works that will stand the test of time.

Many will agree that the given the current global challenges, this is indeed a tricky and hard time to be in charge of anything whatsoever. But where others only see stumbling blocks, strategic leaders see opportunity to impact. The governor has seemingly chosen to toe this path as evident in his moves to put smiles on the face of Bayelsans through social and civil service reforms, human capacity development and welfare management.

This is demonstrated in the allocation of plots of land to 1000 civil servants. And despite various unwanted court case distractions from aggrieved parties, this administration has refused to be derailed in carrying out its given mandate and fulfill promises made in its campaign manifesto where the governor clearly mentioned that he wants to promote welfare, prosperity and ultimately make Bayelsans happy and rejoice. The civil service reforms that has ensured prompt payment of salaries and gratuities owed retirees is the first step to fulfilling the promises.

With the current pandemic ravaging the world, the administration has assured that quality tests, quality control measures and decisions are being worked on to drive the infrastructural revolution mapped out for the state. Being one who understands the relationship between time and quality, the Diri-led administration is only interested in getting the best hands to carry out these infrastructural projects intended to create employment, ease livelihoods, generate revenue and foster development. Policies and works that will last the test of time and provide maximum benefits even to generations to come are on the offering. Indeed Bayelsa State is set for greater things.

The locomotive of qualitative projects and works is already set in motion as seen in the commencement of construction work on the Tombia-Etegwe Flyover project aimed at boosting connectivity and ease of movement. The government through the Government House chief of staff has also hinted of proposals for a railway that will move from Agge Seaport to Kano in the North, with the belief that such massive project has the potential to engage over three thousand workers in the state in gainful employment.

It is often said that patience is a virtue and one that is often rewarded greatly. To enjoy long lasting and durable benefits of good governance, strategic planning and the right hands need to be on the plough going forward. Indeed the actions taken so far speak volumes of a government constantly on the drawing board, setting up a system strong and durable enough to withstand the pressures ahead.

Peace, security, social welfare and a stable environment are non-negotiable terms for sustainable development. The Diri-led government has a clear understanding of this fact. It is upon these important provisions that the hope of the emerging prosperity is anchored. The future is indeed bright. Like diamonds that take considerable time and work under immense pressure beneath the earth before manifesting as the precious material we cherish, the energy, dedication, time and work Governor Diri and his team are putting in at the moment is sure to bring forth a glorious Bayelsa State soon.

Abanum, a social commentator, wrote from Yenagoa, Bayelsa State

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