Stakeholders allege slow progress in Delta State

Warri, Delta state

Stakeholders in Delta State have said the state is not developing as it should.

Human rights activists, civil society, businessmen, professionals and leaders yesterday spoke at the yearly meeting on the polity at the PTI Conference Centre, Effurun in Uwvie Council of the state.

They attributed the state’s stunted growth to corruption, lack of political will, relocation of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) from Warri, youth restiveness, poor infrastructure, skewed political system and harsh business environment.

At the meeting convened by Vanguard for Transparent Leadership and Democracy (VATLAD), the stakeholders reviewed the worrisome state of Delta economy and politics, noting that the anomalies were peculiar to the state.

Igbini Emmanuel, Frederick Mosheshe, Franklin Oseya, Omonigho Robinson, Victor Ifezue and others said despite the huge resources accruing to the state it was far behind Lagos, Anambra and other states who possess little oil and gas resources.

Condemning the pressure put on Shell to move out its over 50 years administrative and operations base from Warri to Lagos, they stressed that the development led to job losses and deprived the people of the economic benefits from their God-given oil resources.

According to them, the consequent economic hopelessness and recession imposed on Warri led many to criminalities, prostitution and risky journeys through Libya to Europe for survival. “This, no doubt, affects the image of Nigeria.”

The grounding of Warri Sea Port to the benefit of Lagos, they observed, is a further injustice against the people of Delta.

They, therefore, appealed to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, former governors James Ibori, Emmanuel Uduaghan, as well as Great Ogboru, and other leaders to put machineries in place to return SPDC to Warri, which they described as “its most economical and natural place of administration and operations.”

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