Governor Seriake Dickson`s Thank You Tour entered day three with his visit to Ogbia local Government. On hand to recieve him were senior members of his cabinet from the local government as well as other serving appointees from the area.
Governor Dickson was met at the Ogbia Jetty and received by his dependable ally and confidant, Deputy Governor Rear Admiral John Jonah(rtd), Commissioner for Women Affairs Serafina Otazi, Secretary to the State Government Edmund Oguru, Commissioner of Sports Develpment Chief Mieteme Obodo, Executive Secretary of Capital City Development Authority HRH Iboro Ige-Edaba as well as three Honorouable members of the House of Assembly and Honourable Warman Ogoriba of the House of Representatives.
Prior to his arrival, the environment was filled with banner carrying groups and anxiously expectant members of the community who chanted solidarity songs in praise of Governor Dickson. In the hall proper were seated traditional leaders and community heads who came garbed in their colorful attires to show respect and solidarity with the Governor.
When the Governor alighted at the jetty the frenzy of activities associated with his presence was again upped as observed in his earlier visits to other LGA`s. Governor Dickson charm is evident as a crowd of people are ever wishful to catch a glimpse of him. He took a walk down the hundred meter road to the Ogbia Brotherhood hall where the event was scheduled to take place. Security details were highly professional as they effectively kept the milling crowd at bay while the Governor took out time out to shake hands with a few people on his way.
The event started with the National Anthem played and the compere for the day immediately took charge of proceedings. Dignitaries on the high table included Honurable Enaye Abah Chairman of Ogbia LGA, The Obanema of Opume Kingdom HRH King A J Turner, Secretary to the State Government Professor Edmund Oguru as well as HRH King George A Lawson, Deputy Governor Rear Admiral John Jonah(rtd) and Bayelsa State PDP Chairman Colonel Inokoba(rtd).
In his welcome address, King George Lawson expressed pleasure at Governor Dickson`s visit stating in clear terms the community`s appreciation for his efforts at bringing security concerns in the State under control. He made requests especially for the repair of the bridge that was destroyed by the flooding disaster last year. He concluded his address by informing the Governor that Ogbia Brotherhood, the foremost social and cultural association in the community had decided to bestow a title on him in recognition of his strength of character and commitment to developing the community and indeed the State. Governor Dickson was then asked to come forward and supported by Chief Obodoh, King Lawson dressed Governor Dickson in a traditional attire and placed a hat on his head, naming him Edi 1 of Ogbia Kingdom. Edi was translated to mean Pillar of support. Deputy Governor John Jonah was equally dressed up in traditional attire too.
When Governor Dickson spoke, he was humble in expressing gratitude to the people of Ogbia for being peaceful, respectful and mindful of the position that President Jonathan Goodluck holds at present, being an Ogbia man himself from Otueke. He heaped praises on HRH King A J Turner for being extremely supportive of his administration and enjoined members of the community to maintain the good reports that are noted about the community.
The Governor also spoke on issues of security with two kidnap cases being reported within a space of about two weeks. While condemning the act of kidnapping in strong terms he also enjoined the community to be vigilant and cooperative with security personnel in fishing out recalcitrant elements in the community who may be positioning themselves to embarrass Government with their heinous activities especially with an election year approaching , come 2014.
The visit came to a close with the National Anthem and the entourage then proceeded to the open field where a civic reception was planned for the visiting Governor. It was at the reception that the community`s strength in numbers was best appreciated. It was a thoroughly planned event with adequate security in place. Movement was restricted by beefy security men who maintained sanity and order around the venue.
Party stalwarts from Ogbia LGA were invited to up to the podium by the Governor to extend greeting to their core constituents who thronged the venue. Other speakers took turns to deliver short speeches which generally centered on their unyielding support for the administration and their preparedness to show same support to President Goodluck whenever called to do so.
As usual, the entourage was entertained with cultural displays and a festive mood was maintained throughout the period. It would seem that Ogbia LGA is a no go area for any other political party as it, like the other two LGA`s earlier visited, showed deeply entrenched networks of grassroot solidarity and excellent levels of communication between leaders and followers.
Governor Dickson scored a major point with his posturing as a platform for bridging communications with the local party hierarchy, the state political networks and the National party structure in Abuja.
The Tour continues next week with a visit to another LGA to be announced soonest.