Rivers State’s Governor Siminalayi Fubara has vowed that no level of sabotage deliberately staged in some quarters will compel him to abandon his mandate to serve, protect and advance the people.
Fubara, who said he would not relinquish the mandate he received from the people to intimidation and blackmail, insisted that he would follow the path of peace, saying that needless crisis would not benefit the state.
The Governor spoke when he declared open the 115 and 116 combined Quarterly General Meeting of Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers in Port Harcourt on Thursday, December 7.
Fubara reaffirmed his commitment to serve with humility, sincerity of purpose, and accountability.
He said: “Although these are trying times, let us not forget that Rivers State is our collective inheritance, presently under my watch, to protect, defend and advance it as the Governor.
“I assure you that I will not fail in this responsibility nor will I surrender our mandate and progress to intimidation, blackmail, and deliberate sabotage. I reaffirm my earlier statement and recommit myself to the path of peace as there is nothing to gain in a state of needless crisis.”
Fubara said drastic measures would be taken to strengthen education, healthcare, and social services across the state including the rural areas.
The Governor said the 2024 budget of the state would prioritize and provide sufficient funding to create universal access to affordable and quality education and healthcare services in Rivers.
The Governor said: “We will also take deliberate steps to unlock the entrepreneurial spirit among our teeming unemployed youths through viable initiatives on skills development, entrepreneurship training, and targeted investments in commercial agriculture.”
Fubara urged traditional rulers to be upright and royal fathers of integrity, who would not compromise their neutrality.
He also enjoined them to be courageous to speak truth to power so that they would not lose their moral authority and legitimacy before their people.
He said: “We must all be worried about the plight of our youths, especially those in rural communities, most of whom are poor, neglected, and almost forgotten in the government’s development plans, policies, and actions.
“As we all know, no human society can progress without peace and security. I will therefore urge you to continue to work tirelessly for the preservation of peace and security to attract sustainable development to your communities.”
The Governor also harped on the need for everybody to have faith in the renewed hope agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led administration at the federal level.
He said President Tinubu had shown determination to pull the nation out of the prevailing economic nightmare and usher in a new era of sustainable economic progress.
In his address, the Chairman of the Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers, Ohna Sergeant Chidi Awuse declared the firm support of the council to the administration of Governor Siminalayi Fubara, saying he was elected as the best and trusted person to lead the state.
Ohna Awuse urged troublemakers fanning the ember of discord to cease the acts and allow the Governor to discharge the functions of his office.
Also speaking, Rivers State Commissioner for Chieftaincy and Community Affairs, Charles Amadi said his ministry had continued to maintain a harmonious relationship with the council and would keep collaborating with them to assist them in discharging their roles as royal fathers.