At Anioma summit, security, salary of workers dominate discussions
Pursuant to its mandate to serve the needs of Anioma people in the Diaspora and those at home, the Anioma Association USA Incorporated, an assemblage of Anioma professionals in diverse fields of human endeavour in America, held its yearly summit on Saturday, June 24, 2017, in Nashville, Tennessee, USA.
At the recent Governing Council Summit, which is the highest decision making organ of the association, was hosted by the Middle Tennessee chapter and chaired by the National President, Mr. Victor Kwentua.
The summit, which was moderated by the National Vice President, Mr. Edwin Obune, attracted a large turnout of members, including, members of the governing council, which comprises the national president, past presidents, state chapter presidents, executive members, president of anioma youth/young adults, youth coordinators, along with other invited personalities in and outside America, as they converged on the city of Nashville, to review past activities and to deliberate on the way forward on how best to deal with evolving issues in Anioma region.
The summit, which has become Anioma’s relevant fora, commendable for its concern about the welfare of Anioma people, their rights to equal opportunities, the development of Anioma and the preservation of Anioma cultural heritage in all its decent aspects. The deliberations which flowed from the association’s secretariat report, chapter reports, convention update to moving Anioma forward, was presented by the Executive Secretary, Mr. Enefazu Otuya and the Chapter Presidents. The keynote address was delivered by Mr. Godfrey C. Osakwe and participants delved into diverse issues affecting Anioma and came out with the following observations and resolutions:
• The Summit unanimously resolved to adopt the report of the 2018 National Convention planning committee billed for Chicago in July 6-7, 2018 and urged members and interested participants to start preparation in earnest.
• The Council reiterated its principled position on the unity of Anioma and the need to foster good relationship and peaceful coexistence among Anioma people and other ethnic nationalities in and outside America.
• The Summit reaffirms its commitment to the development of Anioma, but decries the current state of affairs in Delta State. The constant flooding of Asaba, the capital city of Delta State and its environs particularly when it rains and the nonpayment of workers salary in the State and the general poor outlook of our urban and rural towns in Anioma and Delta State in general has become a source of embarrassment. We therefore call on the State government to help alleviate these problems.
• The Summit also underlined the need to mobilize all Anioma people for capacity building and positive engagement with relevant stakeholders to develop a unique mix of solutions to deal with the multi dimensional issues hindering the development of Anioma region and Delta State in general.
• Conscious of the fact that security of lives and property is an enabler for investment and development, the Summit “strongly condemned the continued presence and activities of Fulani militias masquerading as herdsmen and the resurgence of other new security threats in Anioma region, such as armed robbery, kidnapping, cultism, land disputes, political thuggery and crisis in Niger Delta region among others leading to wanton loss of lives and properties.” The Summit, called on His Excellency, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor, Delta State and other relevant authorities to immediately put a stop to this menace.
• The Summit commended the efforts of some state chapters and other progressive associations/organisations for their various community programmes and projects in Anioma communities, and reaffirmed its commitment to the development of Anioma, as government alone cannot do everything.
• The Summit noted with satisfaction the abundant human and natural resources in Anioma and Delta State; and wondered why some basic social amenities such as modern school learning, sanitary and sports facilities, recreational centers, art theatre and a hub for creative industry practitioners are lacking. “These assets, if properly harnessed can turnaround the economic prosperity of the people,” the statement said. In that regard, the Summit underscored the need to dialogue with His Excellency, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor, Delta State on possible areas of support and collaboration.
• The Summit also welcomed the call for dialogue among the ethnic nationalities in Nigeria to chart a way forward as a nation; but called on those fanning the embers of war to desist from it, as no nation goes to war twice and survives. The Summit, however, urged the people of Anioma to stay focused and speak with oneness of the mind as events unfolds, so as not to be cut in the web of minority should other ethnics decides to part way.