Ben Dunno, Warri
A governorship aspirant in Delta State under the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Sunny Ofehe, has assured of an unprecedented socio-economic and political evolution in the state if given the mandate in next year’s election.
The Netherlands-based activist-turned politician, who stated while addressing newsmen, in Warri at the weekend, noted that the indigenes of the state have no business being poor considering the vast human and natural resources that are bound.
According to the activist, Delta State would experience massive turn around because his ‘Fix Delta’ policies were well-tailored to reflect the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.
His words, “Our policies have been carefully designed in line with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to combat and improve the living standard of our people”.
He said that Delta State has four seaports that could be revamp and develop to international standard seeking relevant federal government support, promising to bring his international experience on how Rotterdam seaports are being manage to change the socioeconomic fortune of the state.
In growing the state’s Internal Generated Revenue, Ofehe said his administration would encourage local investors to site tank farms for crude oil and petroleum product storage in the state so as to stop the excuses of why crude oil produced in the state are ferried away abroad for storage.
“Delta state though subject to some kind of challenges used to be second largest producer of crude oil in whole of Nigeria and has the highest concentration of gas in the whole of Africa and ordinarily when I look around I don’t think we have tank farms and one of the reality in our oil and gas industry today is the fact that after almost 60 years of oil extraction in the country, Nigeria still did not know how much quantity of oil and gas the multinationals are producing for them on a daily basis”.
He also said that the state was suffering fluctuation in oil allocation because Nigeria as a country has no gauge to measure the quantity of crude oil and gas produce by the multinationals on a daily basis so whatever they declared as production quantum is what is given.
He continued, “We still do not have machines or equipments to be able to measure what we produce, so what that means is that the oil companies declares anything as quantum of production and we take it. It is a sad reality.
“I took that issue up in European Parliament in 2011 when I said one of the way we can combat oil theft is to know the quantity of crude oil Nigeria produce on a daily basis and we should know the quantity that is of OPEC and the quantity that is off OPEC.
Ofehe said that as an oil producing state governor if elected in 2019, he would ensure a departure from the old order where both the multinationals and NNPC comes with figures of oil production and allocations that are not commensurable to what the Delta state produce in terms of oil and gas.
“Then we can now enter the next stage of marking Nigeria crude oil. In Europe, crude oil are mark with colours so if there is any oil spill you don’t need any investigation to identify where the crude oil is coming from.
“As a government, we will push for this at the federal and international level because we as oil producing state cannot suffer the brunt of production at the detriment of our people and still lose our production quantum and allocations to failure of the system to do the needful.
“These are the area I want to come in as a governor of a state for the position that Nigeria currently occupy as eight largest exporter of crude oil in the world that we need to check. And in checking that, we need to create all the necessary legal framework that would make us benefit from the God-given natural resources which no successive government have been able to do.
He said that his administration would use the paraphernalia of governance to support local investors in the marine sector and agricultural industry to enable local farmers grow crops in a mechanized way that would give nutritional access to pregnant women.
The APC governorship aspirant said he would resuscitate the public school system and restore their old glory, saying “I am a die hard advocate for public schools, we will revamp them to international standard and make them competitive in a way that the prices of private schools would be cut short”.
Chief Ofehe who expressed dismay over the poor condition of the Effurun roundabout, Enerhen junction, Jakpa junction and Interbua roundabout in Asaba, said that when elected, “this are places that supposed to showcase the beauty of the state to any first time visitor and investors” would be rebranded at no cost to the state government.
He said that as a governor, he would ensure a policy that would compel multinationals companies and private investors wanting to do business in the state to beautify strategic locations in the state as part of their corporate social responsibility to the state without the state spending a kobo for such projects.
Ofehe who described his aspiration as a mass movement that comprises all sectors and its interrelatedness, said he would ensure better education, healthcare, higher savings and better insurance and pension plans for Deltans like have never being seen in decades.
“It is a movement that will attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and building a solid infrastructure and logistics as well as more economic diversity, more jobs for our youths.
“We will create an enabling environment for sustainable wealth and job opportunities for our people. We will make the job market more transparent and increase matchmaking and development on the job.
Furthermore, he said that his administration of the state would ensure workable savings and insurance policy for Deltans while at the same time pro-commercial and pro-societal efforts would be rewarded strongly to accelerate the process to Fix Delta.
On peace and security, he said that Delta State would become more peaceful, stable and safe, “for each of you and for those who consider to live and invest in Delta, specifically at night.
“We will therefore increase the Digital Intelligence Capacity of our police. We will Install safety guards at local level, apply more rural electrification, apply a zero tolerance policy to organized crime, create a reward system for law enforcement and give economic alternatives to those who commit small crime and will show attitude change”.
On whether he has the chances to clinching the APC governorship ticket, Ofehe said that he was not in tone with those who are canvassing for zoning or rotation system of government that both APC and PDP are operating under the unwritten agreement, stressing that the beauty of democracy was to create a level playing field for everyone who wants to vie for elective position.
Fielding question on whether he has the finance to bankroll the delegate election, he said that he wouldn’t run money politics or pay to be voted for, saying that he would appeal to the conscious of the people to give him the chance to bring the laudable vision he has for the state.
“I am not going to run money politics. Am not going to pay one delegate. Am not going to buy one delegate. I’m going to make sure, thanks to few people who have been supportive of our fix Delta project, I forge ahead to the primaries.
“And I am going to tell them why I deserve their votes. I’m going to appeal to their consciousness and it would be left for them to choose between what will be better for their future and future of their children and just the money at that moment.
“So, whatever happened after the primaries if I win then the state would have the chances to enjoy the opportunities I want to bring in but if I lose I will return to my option “B” knowing full well that I have offered myself to serve but my people didn’t give me that chance. From there I will never be troubled by what has been troubling me.