Guild Of Editors End 5-Day Confab in Yenagoa, Confers Awards On Gov. Dickson, Buhari's Media Aide

Create: 09/01/2015 - 16:53

The eleventh edition of the All Nigerian Editors Conference (ANEC) has ended in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital with an award of excellent performance in office and media friendliness on Governor Seriake Dickson.

The eleventh edition of the All Nigerian Editors Conference (ANEC) has ended in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital with an award of excellent performance in office and media friendliness on Governor Seriake Dickson.

Also honoured for his contributions to the growth of media practice and the Nigerian Guild of Editors, NGE, is the immediate past President of the Guild, Mr Femi Adesina, who vacated the position following his appointment as the Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity.

Adesina who was represented at the event was first elected as President, Nigerian Guild of Editors in March 2013 and was doing a second term before his latest appointment.

Presenting the awards at a dinner ceremony organised by the Bayelsa Government in honour of members of the Guild, the new NGE President, Mallam Garba Deen-Muhammed expressed gratitude to the Government and people of the state particularly the governor for their support and show of hospitality throughout the 5-day conference.

Giving a personal impression about the performance of the governor's 3 and half years in office, Mallam Muhammed, who was part of a team of editors that embarked on a tour of some state projects, described Hon Dickson as a man of courage and vision, who is driven by passion to conquer his difficult environment.

He scored the Dickson-led administration high in the areas of security, infrastructures such as the ongoing cargo airport,  roads, the world-class diagnostic centre and public buildings, especially the four new secretariat annexes, which he noted, would go a long way to address office accommodation problems for workers in the state.

The NGE President, who also lauded the present administration's policy of free education from primary to secondary level, noted that though the benefits of the initiative may not be immediate, it is one of the best options opened to any foresighted government to tackle poverty and underdevelopment.

Continuing, he said, "The Tourism Island close to the Government House Area, which was our first port of call, I must say that with your resolve to make tourism a major revenue earner for Bayelsa State, you couldn't have made a better start in the tourism Island, which comprises a Polo field, a gulf course and a hotel.

"Definitely that is a good start and I will like to express my own view and appreciation that with that kind of approach, I believe you will, within the shortest possible time, achieve your objective of making Bayelsa a tourism hub not only in tye South South region but in the entire country and probably in Africa as a whole.

"On our way to Nembe, we were told that before that road was constructed, you could only access Nembe through the creeks but with the construction of the road a wide range of opportunities are now opening up for the inhabitants of that area. I will like to say that, that is also another of your people-oriented projects that made a very big impression on us.

Responding, Governor Dickson expressed appreciation to the leadership and members of the Guild for the honour done him and for choosing Bayelsa to host their annual conference.

He also congratulated them for the peaceful manner in which they elected the new leaders, and urged the NGE to always make presentation of facts and objectivity their watchwords.

His words: "The Government of Bayelsa State appreciate your presence and will remain eternally grateful to you all for your partnership for nation-building. For us as a government, we are very proud to have been associated with you and we want this partnership to continue and deepen in the service of our nation and humility.

"Now you've come and stayed with us in Bayelsa for a while. It is our expectation that as you go back from this conference, you will reflect your experiences in your editorial works. Bayelsa wants to be better represented. Bayelsa does not want to be painted as a place where only negative and bad things happen.

The Bayelsa State Governor also put the Ogbia-Nembe road in context, saying "We do not claim credit for what we have not done. That road was initially awarded by the NDDC and SPDC and it has been going on for the past 15 years. As a matter of fact, that road had been on the drawing board for the past 50 years. But it wasn't moving anywhere.

According to him, "It was when we came on board, we called the contractors, community leaders from the area and then the original partners. And we discovered that the major problem they had was inadequacy of funding as a result of their respective budgetary constraints. Yes, we are not an original contracting party but development does not know boundaries.

And so, when the contractor told us they needed N3bn to make the road passable to Nembe, I immediately directed my Commissioner for Finance to write a cheque of N3bn for them. Today,I'm so glad that you drove to Nembe, a place that was cut off from the rest of the state.