Uduaghan Drums Support for Okowa

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EMMANUEL Uduaghan, Delta State Governor, has appealed to Deltans in the diaspora to support his administration’s effort to develop every facet of the economy of the state. Uduaghan spoke on Thursday at an interactive session between Ifeanyi Okowa, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, governorship flag bearer, and prominent Deltans and friends of the state resident in Lagos.

The event took place at the newly built governor’s lodge, where Uduaghan told the gathering that every aspect of the state’s economy was expanding rapidly but needed the support of entrepreneurs from the state’s origin resident in Lagos. He appealed to Deltans to impress it on their foreign business partners to invest in the state to reduce unemployment, which is the goal of his Delta Beyond Oil Economic Development Model.

Speaking on the forthcoming elections, Uduaghan said Senator Okowa’s emergence as the PDP governorship candidate was good for the state, adding that the Delta State PDP was working hard to ensure victory for President Goodluck Jonathan and Okowa.

Ifeanyi Okowa
Okowa

On the new governor’s lodge, he explained that the old lodge was demolished and a befitting new one was built to give a befitting image to the state.

Senator Okowa, in his remarks, assured the gathering that he would partner with the private sector to consolidate on the investment gains of the Uduaghan administration. He solicited the support of entrepreneurs of the state’s origin to buy into the Delta Beyond Oil initiative, promising that his administration would continue with the Warri Industrial Park as well as develop agricultural business parks to exploit the state’s vast agricultural potentials.

Okowa promised to advance healthcare through a comprehensive health insurance package for the state, stressing that youth employment challenge will be addressed through skill training while also ensuring urban renewal.

Chike Ogeah, Delta State commissioner for information, in his welcome address, explained that the dinner was to enable critical stakeholders to interact with Okowa.

Boko Haram Wreck Baga

Boko Haram fighters
Boko Haram fighters

THE Boko Haram terrorists caused havoc on Thursday when it destroyed at least 16 towns and villages in a renewed assault after capturing a key military base in restive northeast Nigeria. Heavy casualties were feared in the attacks on Wednesday in the remote north of Borno state but there was no independent corroboration of the figures cited.

Musa Bukar, head of the Kukawa local government area, said: “They (Boko Haram) burnt to the ground all the 16 towns and villages, including Baga, Doron-Baga, Mile 4, Mile 3, Kauyen Kuros and Bunduram.”

Abubakar Gamandi, head of Borno’s fish traders union and a Baga native, also confirmed the attacks, adding that hundreds of people who fled were trapped on islands on Lake Chad.

Boko Haram fighters also on last Saturday captured Baga and the headquarters of the Multinational Joint Task Force, MNJTF, which is made of troops from Nigeria, Niger and Chad. Baga is of strategic importance for Boko Haram, as it was thought to be the last town in northern Borno under federal government control.

The militants, who have seized more than two dozen towns in northeast Nigeria in the last six months, now control all three of Borno’s borders with Niger, Chad and Cameroon.

Bukar said the Islamists used petrol bombs and explosives to destroy Baga, a key fishing and commercial hub, and surrounding villages on the shores of Lake Chad. “We have over 20,000 people displaced from Baga and surrounding villages in a camp in Maiduguri and we are making arrangements to convey another 10,000 from Monguno where they ran to,” he added.

— Jan. 19, 2014 @ 01:00 GMT

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