The people of Gokana Local Government Area of Rivers State have joined others in clamoring for the creation of another local government area from the present Gokana LGA.
Justice Peter B. Akere (Rtd) dropped the hint during the 20 years anniversary celebration of the council at Kpor, the Headquarters of the Local Government.
The celebration which took place on Friday September 23, 2011, at Peace Hall, Gokana had past Chairmen, Chiefs, Elders, Politicians Youths and women in attendance.
Justice Akere who chaired the event, stated that Gokana has grown in population and the celebration of 20 years of its existence is quite remarkable. The Chairman of the occasion in his speech condemned what he described as injustice to the people of Gokana who, in the past, used to produce two seats in the State House of Assembly, namely, Panumu and kibagha.
He recalled that the Late Rev. Canon Abe, the father of Senator Magnus Abe, was representing Kibagha constituency while Hon. D.K Badom represented Panumu constituency in the past and wondered why one seat was stolen by political manipulation.
Justice Akere stated that it was not fair enough for Gokana and Khana to send one person to the House of Representative when Khana alone is large enough to have their own. He called on the Federal Government to restore what FEDECO gave Gokana people in 1979.
Earlier, the Gokana Council Chairman, Hon. Demua Ledee Demua, in his welcome address said the anniversary was quite important as it served to provide the opportunity for reminiscence on growth indices of the council.
Hon. Demua said the principal aim of having a local government was to provide means of running services for the benefit of the people with community participation and regular stakeholders meeting.
He promised to deliver on the foundation laid by his predecessors by improving on individuals and organizations through adequate provision of empowerment and infrastructural facilities for the uplift of the entire Local Government Area.
In his keynote address, the first executive council chairman, Hon. Lokpo Kunasi, recalled that during his tenure he employed enough teachers knowing that education is the foundation of growth. Lokpo Kunasi admonished politicians who block others and will not allow others to grow.
He advised the present council chairman to fish out and exhume talents form the various communities for the growth of the area.
In his solidarity message, the House of Assembly member representing Gokana, Hon. Dr. Innocent Barikor, used the occasion to call for unification and peace in the area, while calling on all to be at peace with nature.
The immediate past council chairman and now the Commissioner for Works, Rivers State, Chief Hon. Victor Tombari Giadom, while appreciating the co-existence for the period of 20 years as a political autonomy, reviewed and re-examined the past records and activities for growth and stability.
Highlight of the event was the matriculation of students into the ICT centre, the opening of the Gokana library for public use, the presentation of the Gokana newsletter, and the presentation of Anniversary lecture by Dr. Nemibarini Zabbey, a lecturer of the Dept. of Animal Science and Fisheries, University of Port Harcourt, with the title “Our Environment, our Heritage, our Future” #####