Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State has expressed optimism that Nigeria would become stronger, more united and prosperous after the forthcoming elections.
Governor Diri, who urged Nigerians to be determined and courageous in their bid to rescue the country from total collapse, added that despite the challenges, there are some improvements.
The Governor stated this at an interdenominational church service organized by the state government to mark Nigeria’s 62nd independence and the 26th anniversary of the creation of Bayelsa at the King of Glory Chapel in Government House, Yenagoa.
Commenting on how the state has fared so far, he said though Bayelsa is not where it ought to be, the state has made some remarkable progress from its inception in 1996.
Governor Diri reassured the people of the state of his administration’s commitment towards completing all ongoing landmark projects including the Nembe-Brass Road, Angiama-Oporoma bridge and the Sagbama-Ekeremor Road to open up the state for sustainable prosperity.
The Bayelsa helmsman also used the opportunity to caution politicians to focus squarely on issues, rather than engage in character assassination of political rivals as the campaigns for the 2023 elections kick off this week.
He equally warned the youth to be mindful of politicians, whose stock in trade is to throw around Greek gifts and promote violence during political seasons.
Commenting on Bayelsa, he said: “We are not where we ought to be but definitely we are not where we used to be. And that is, what is important. You see, when there is hope, then you can muster every courage and determination to get to where you are going to.
“So clearly, we are convinced that we are on the right track, right steps are being taken in the right direction for our state, Bayelsa.
“Even in Nigeria, we cannot say it is all failure. There are some improvements.
But the most important thing, is for us to believe and have faith and be determined because a man without determination and courage cannot be successful.
“So I recommend determination, courage and forthrightness as well as faith in God and reduction of all those who do not say the truth and who do not obey the laws but rather obey sentiments and emotions. Once we reduce that bulk, then Nigeria will be better for us.”
On the current crisis in the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), he said it would surmount its current challenges and emerge victorious at all levels in the 2023 general elections.
Represented by his deputy, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, the Governor described the post-convention crisis rocking the PDP as “shaking of the water in the river that will not stop the boat from getting to its destination”.
He said by the grace of God and the support of Nigerians who have seen the difference between the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the PDP, his party would reclaim power at the centre and in majority of the states, including Bayelsa.
His words: “What is happening in our party is just shaking of water. The water has not poured and will not pour. For the fact that there is a storm in the river, does not mean, the ship or the boat will not sail to its destination.
“The most important question is: Is there a competent captain and a functional radar? The PDP ship will definitely get to its destination. By God’s grace and the support of well meaning people of our country, we are going to win convincingly.”
Earlier in a sermon, the Chaplain, King of Glory Chapel, Government House, Pastor David Yalah, while speaking on the topic “Help From Above”, stressed the need for the people of the state and the country in general to appreciate God for who He is and what He has done.
Pastor Yalah, who anchored his message on Psalm 124 and Matthew 8:17, enjoined the people to always seek divine intervention, adding that the current challenges confronting the nation are indications that the country needs God to turn its situation around for good.