Bayelsa State Governor, Hon Seriake Dickson has attributed the country’s security challenges to insufficient investment in human capacity development and failure of most critical state institutions.
The Governor stated this when the Director-General and participants of Course 35 of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, near Jos in Plateau State paid him a courtesy call at Government House, Yenagoa.
Hon. Dickson, who identified the provision of a secure environment as the first responsibility of government, vowed that his administration would not compromise in the maintenance of law and order.
He maintained that the present administration has in the past one year made appropriate investments in the provision of law and order, adding that more efforts will still be made in that direction to ensure a safer environment for socio-economic activities to thrive.
His words; “Here, in the past one year, we have made a lot of investment in the maintenance of law and order, putting the right structures and laws in place and also send the clear message that leadership has no business compromising law and order. Within one year, we have been able to provide this level of security and peace and tranquillity that you are going to witness as you go out there to interact with the people of the state.
“But we are not yet where we ought to be. That is why we are working with our partners to see how we can make even our waterways safe so that our strategic assets will be secured and our people who live along the waterways will also be safe.
While commending the Director-General and Staff of NIPSS for keeping the dreams of its founding fathers alive, Governor Dickson urged the Institute to carry out objective assessment of their findings to promote good governance in the country.
“We will like to remind the Institute to do more and tell us what we are not doing right. Only the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies have the institutional and structural capacity to dig deep into the issues we have talked about here (security challenges).
“But in spite of these challenges, our country has the potential of being one of the greatest nations in the world especially with the President’s transformation agenda and the enthusiasm, which I know players at all levels are working hard to ensure that we make life more meaningful for our people.
Expressing delight at the visit, the Governor directed all government officials to interact freely with the NIPSS’s team to enable them have a dispassionate assessment of what the current administration is doing in the state.
“I hereby direct all government officials to interact closely with you on what we are doing in terms of reforms in the governance culture, and what we are doing on transparency and accountability because we hold power at the mercy of our people.”
Continuing, he said “we have issues of pollution and environmental degradation; those are very serious matters and in this state much more than any other state you will visit because this is where oil production and exploration started in 1956. I hope you will find time to visit places like Oloibiri, which is now a metaphor of the day after oil.”
“And that is why in the new Bayelsa we are also working hard to diversify the base of our economy and prepare our state for the day after oil. And we are doing so by mobilising resources to invest in agriculture and tourism.
Earlier in his remarks, the Director-General of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies, Professor Tijani Mohammed-Bande enjoined Nigerians not to despair in the face of the current challenges but rather support the present administration’s transformation agenda to move the nation forward.
Professor Mohammed-Bande, who lauded the Governor on his developmental strides, noted that the institute was embarking on study tour to all the states with a view to putting together a report that will promote good governance and security in the country.