A chieftain of the Ijaw Youth Council Worldwide, Chief Frank Akiefa has called on Governor Ifeanyi Okowa to give priority to developing Ijaw areas in Delta State.
The former Western Zone Chairman of the IYC made the call while congratulating Governor Okowa and the people of Delta in marking the state’s 30th anniversary.
Chief Frank commended the former lawmaker dubbed “Ekwueme” for his landmark achievements in his 6 years in office.
He particularly lauded Governor Okowa for changing the face of Asaba, the Delta state capital, to a modern day city.
“I want to congratulate His Excellency, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, and the people of Delta state for coming out strong in these three decades of our existence.
“The Governor has put in commendable efforts in the area of development in our dear State, especially in Asaba, which has been turned to a modern-day city.
“Road networks, youth empowerment, and development are some of the visible achievements of his administration and he must be commended.
However, Frank who spoke with our correspondent in Warri on Wednesday lamented over the deplorable state of Ijaw communities in the state.
He described the Ijaws as being marginalized and almost abandoned by the Okowa administration developmentally.
“While the governor has done well in Delta North, the reverse is the case in the South, particularly Ijaw communities.
“We are marginalized and abandoned developmentally in this administration.
“If not so, how can we explain the situation with the Ayakoromor bridge? That a project of such magnitude is treated with levity is a pointer to our marginalization.
“Many communities suffer from flooding annually. Some are on the verge of being cut off by erosion. Yet, the government has not seen the need to put a permanent solution to the issue of flooding in these areas.
“Ordinarily, the Ijaws ought to be treated like kings in Delta state, judging from our contributions both economically and politically.
“It is sad that after 30 years, there is no single standard hospital or higher institution in any Ijaw community in this state,” he lamented.
Chief Frank charged Governor Okowa to ensure he completes the Ayakoromor bridge before his tenure elapses, or he will go down in history as a governor without the development of Ijaws at heart.