Delta Governor and Vice-Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Sen. Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, on Sunday said Igbos were great partners to States and Federal Government in economic development of the country.
He said that the contributions of Ndigbo in the development of commerce in Delta and Nigeria were significant, affirming that Igbos were renowned for resourcefulness.
Okowa spoke at the 2022 Cultural Day of Ndigbo Cultural Forum, Asaba,.
He commended Ndigbo in Delta for their peaceful disposition and for embarking on worthy courses for the growth and development of their host communities.
“Asaba is home to all. We are ready to welcome all and we will continue to accommodate all. When we see law abiding citizens going about their businesses and helping to develop Asaba, we are happy.
“So, I am glad that members of this association are people doing their legitimate business and are law abiding.
“I am very much aware that a lot of our brothers particularly from Onitsha, own their homes here and go to do business in onitsha; we are happy about that.
“We accommodate all, even to the extent that our free maternal health care and our free treatment of children under five years of age, covers a lot of our brothers who are from across the Niger but resides here in Asaba,” he said.
The Governor said the state had continued to receive the help of God in ensuring that Asaba and the whole of Delta remained peaceful and secured.
“You can only achieve this when you work with the people and we will continue to work with all who live in Asaba and the whole of Delta state.
“I promise you that we will continue to work with everyone to ensure peace for the remaining part of this administration and hope that the next government which I believe would also be formed by the PDP in Delta State would continue to do too.
“The Igbos matter alot in this state because I know that they hold a lot of businesses in this state and those businesses help to improve our commerce.
“I also know that we have a lot of industries here in Asaba owned by the Igbos and those businesses are generating a lot of employments in and around Asaba and we are happy to have many more of those businesses and industries come to our place,” he stated.
Chairman of the occasion, Igwe Sir Benneth Izuchukwu Emeka, Okebo II of Umueri, commended Governor Okowa for his remarkable contributions to the development of Delta and assured of the support of Ndigbo towards his presidential aspiration.
Earlier, Chairman of the Forum, Chief Chinedu Obodo, had expressed appreciation to the people of Asaba for their hospitality over the years adding that the Forum which started in March 2014 had grown to become a roll call of prominent business and professional leaders from across the Niger, resident in Asaba, the Delta State capital.
He said the Forum members were law abiding citizens and engaged in different legitimate businesses which had impacted positively on the socio-economic strata of Asaba.
He said the 2022 Cultural Festival was conceived to bring together Igbo political, business, professional, religious and cultural leaders to celebrate the rich, diverse Igbo culture and heritage.
Highpoint of the ceremony was the presentation of Award of Excellence in Projects and Human Capital Development to Governor Okowa in recognition of his sterling accomplishments in infrastructural an human capital development in the state.