INAUGURATION OF BAYELSA NEW MEDIA TEAM
Central Coordinating Committee
July7, 2012 at Government House Banquet Hall, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, Nigeria.
ADDRESS OF THE CHAIRMAN
Rt. Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson
The Governor of Bayelsa State.
Our Distinguished Awardees
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is my utmost privilege to be able to stand before your distinguished presence to accept on behalf of the central coordinating committee of the Bayelsa State New Media team the honor done us by this invitation to serve in the designated capacities.
I wish to pledge our unalloyed loyalty to Bayelsa State and its people first, then to the Nigerian people and to humanity in the discharge of our duties.
The new media team is designed to be an instrument of peace, good governance and transparency the basic ingredients for accountable society. We shall strive individually and collectively to achieve these ideals.
The new media is a convergence of the traditional media with high interactive power that allows it to serve as a good tool for information, feedback, reaction, correction, evaluation all basic building blocks for accountability and good governance.
I know there are still those who would query the social media relevance. The records bear us out in this instance. The social media use reached its zenith during the April general Elections of 2011 as well as the Governorship elections that brought our dear Governor Henry Seriake Dickson to Power in Bayelsa State. We all know how difficult it was for anyone to campaign against an incumbent especially where the Famoutangbe was involved. But the social media kept the restoration Mantra resounding in our minds until we cast our votes massively for him.
TIME LINE OF ACHIEVEMENTS OF SOCIAL MEDIA IN BAYELSA STATE
In essence, the face of the social media during the campaigns contributed:
*Ideological foundations for policy anchorage
* Direction for defining the restoration Agenda
*Building blocks for mass participation and grassroots support.
*After winning the Bayelsa State governorship election of February 14, the social Media had come handy in sharpening the policy focus for it provided for a testing ground for advance reactions to impending policy issues. The number of Facebook pages has tripled within the period, an indication of its popularity amongst Bayelsans
* Recall too that on May 2, Social Media practitioners gathered for the first time since the Bayelsa State elections in Port Harcourt to click glasses evaluate progress and share awards while inaugurating two committees to work out modalities for engaging the Restoration government of Bayelsa State to achieve election promises.
*May 14-15 saw the participation of Bayelsa State delegates in the first African New Media and Governance Conference at the Shehu Yar Adua Centre Abuja. The direct outcome was the resolution of practitioners to come together to form the Bayelsa New Media Team aimed at forging unity amongst practitioners to achieve post election goals of cooperating to achieve good governance in the State by working closely with the SSA to Gov HSD on Social Media and Reasearch Comrade John Idumange. Within just 2 months of creating a unified BAYELSA NEW MEDIA TEAM Facebook page and blog, we receive over a thousand visitors a day with over 400 likes and about 100 emails a day.
With the unification of social media platforms in and around the State,we have built a solid platform to help them work pointedly for public good. It has not been without challenges though. These include:
Lack of funds
Lack of office space or communication hub
Dearth of new media tools such as Computers, Blackberry and other devices
Lack of Government support
Inadequate participation of Bayelsa Grassroots population
CALL FOR GOVERNMENT ASSISTANCE
Owing to the sharp limitation to our capacity to deliver on these desirable goals we would like to use this opportunity to solicit for government assistance in these areas:
*Provision of ICT infrastructure
*Procurement of an office space which would serve the State as Communication hub
*Provision of logistics support
*Provision of New Media Tools
We pledge to work closely with the government to achieve the restoration Agenda of the Bayelsa State government of Gov. Henry Seriake Dickson.
We would like to use this opportunity once again to thank our foremost agent of change, His Excellency Governor Henry Seriake Dickson for appointing John Idumange as SSA on Social Media and Research : we pledge to work closely with him as we have always done to achieve the lofty goals set down by this pace setting administration in Bayelsa State.
LONG LIVE BAYELSA STATE!
LONG LIVE NIGERIA!
CENTRAL COORDINATING COMMITTEE
BAYELSA NEW MEDIA TEAM