Paul Osuyi, Ben Dunno, Asaba
Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State has boasted that nothing will stop his re-election in 2019.
Governor Okowa said he was already coasting home to victory irrespective of the determination of the main opposition political party, the All Progressive Congress (APC), to stop him.
Beaming with confidence, the governor told journalists at a quarterly media briefing, in Asaba, that he would be returned as governor along with his deputy, Kingsley Otuaro.
Okowa was responding to a question about the possible abandonment of ongoing construction of a secretariat complex should he lose next year’s gubernatorial election in the state.
In the words of the governor, “The secretariat complex is project, and it is ongoing but the first thing is that by the grace of God, I am coming back. I will come back with my deputy.”
Governor Okowa said the secretariat project would be completed in 2019 but wished that the contractor expedite action for it to be commissioned before he takes oath of office for the second term.
“The fact is that before the end of this first tenure, the project would have been almost completed with the way they are going about it, they are right on course.
“The consultant supervising the project briefs us regularly and by the projection of the contractor, it is due for completion in 2019, it may not be before May 29.
“So there will be no question of that project being abandoned, that will not happen. But I am praying that they will work a little faster to see if I can commission it before I enter my second tenure,” he stated.
On the January 6, 2018 local government election, the governor disclosed that the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission (DSIEC) spent a total of N720 million to conduct the exercise.
He said the state government initially released N700 million to the commission while additional N20 million was later released for the re-scheduled election in Ughelli North and Ethiope East local government areas.
The governor thumbed up the Commission, saying that the money released for the election was prudently utilised.
“I want to believe that that was very prudent spending, considering the fact that the bulk of the money was for payment of ad-hoc staff.
“We have over 3,000 polling units in the state, and each unit was manned by a polling officer and two polling clerks who are ad-hoc staff. That is quite huge apart from payment for other engaged staff and the security for the election,” he added.