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Economic Summit: Opobo/Nkoro/Andoni Fire First Salvo

On the 4th and 5th of October 2012, the Banquest Hall of the Hotel Presidential Port Harcourt witnessed and hosted a mammoth crowd of different shades and class of people, the big, the small, the intellectual cum academia and the politicians. It was the Economic Summit organized by the Andoni/Opobo/Nkoro federal constituency.
The summit with the theme: “Shared Responsibility, Shared Prosperity” brought together an amalgam of university dons, consultants and researchers from different fields of study all with their roots in the constituency with the sole aim of jaw-jawing on way to see the zone out of the doldrums.
Chairman of the occasion, Deputy Speaker of the federal House of Representatives Hon. Emeka Ihedioha (CON) speaking during the first night commended the organizers for such an epoch-making event and suggested after a couple of people had said that too that the next year’s summit be held in the constituency. His reason being that all those who would attend would then see the terrain and appreciate the difficulties of the area in question.
He said: this summit is not only about showcasing the investment potentials of the Andoni/Opobo/Nkoro domain no, beyond that, it is also about charting a new road map for wholistic development of both the people and the area.
“You can agree with me that the people of this very constituency have not received their fair share of government attention and that is why I will assure you here and now that the National Assembly would strictly pay a veritable attention towards developing the Acts intended to speed up the development of this gas/oil rich constituency as it should be.”
Chief Iheadioha, an indigene of Aboh Mbaise LGA of Imo State noted that the issue of security is paramount towards the development of an area and that Opobo/Nkoro/Andoni is not left out in this time of suppressed restiveness saying that however, he has not been conversant with any news item pointing to the fact that the zone had much to do with the military during the era. Chief Ihedioha also shared a thought on the vandalization of pipeline, stressing that these days what government does is to take away the cost of repairing such vandalized pipes from the constituency allocations.
Guest speaker of the day, Dr. Carlos Lopes, United Nations under secretary General informed the audience that the second United Nations office in Nigeria was recently commissioned in Port Harcourt, urging the people to take advantage of its existence since the United Nations is about people and their economic development aside from political issues.
On his part, the executive Governor of Rivers State, Rt. Hon. Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi praised the convener-Hon. Dakuku Peterside, House of Reps. member representing Opobo/Nkoro constituency in the House of Representatives saying that this is one clear way of steering the development away from oil revenue and allocations, from emphasizing that lack of agricultural development had been the bane of many retrogressive matters in Rivers State. Governor Amaechi thus encouraged the organizers and the people to be proactive towards the implementations of all resolutions from this summit so that Andoni/Opobo/Nkoro will truly experience the desired development.
Tele Ikuru, Deputy Governor who represented the governor, a son of Andoni spoke about discords in the zone, pointing out that all those who were who were in the habit of formenting discords in the zone should stop forthwith. “Our constituency is one from today and I assure you that the politics of divide and rule is no longer feasible in our area. We will continue to match forward”, he said.
The convener himself Hon. Dakuku Peterside speaking earlier in the day said, “From today, between Andoni, Opobo and Nkoro we have removed all forms of discrepancies, demarcations and boundaries. All we have today are bonds of agreement; together ness and oneness of heart so I plead with you brothers, sisters, everyone gathered here to join hands with us to move our area forward. We have brought change and this new change of heart that ushers in understanding and assimilation must be sustained.
Peterside remarked that it was God that brought the communities together, hence divisive politics should be done away with saying …we are a people of common destiny and should try to see ourselves as one.”
Topics like Local Economy for Andoni/Opobo/Nkoro people which dealt mainly on agriculture century on fish, farming, cultivation and harvesting, oil, gas and environment, harvesting our untapped potentials; education, health an sanitation; optimization, efficiency and sustainability agenda; good governance and accountability: key to unlocking community Development and prosperity; infrastructural development: gateway to growth and commercialization of agriculture: renewing our competitive advantage were treated during the 2 day summit. ###

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