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Oborevwori determined to restore the glory of Warri, Uvwie and environs - Prince Godwin Ejinyere ~ Truth Reporters

Hon ( Prince) Godwin.E. Ejinyere is the Director General of the Warri, Uvwie And Environs Special Area Development Agency ( WUEDA). Our Crew of Dennis Otu, Daniel Bayagbon and Christopher Odamah, from the Office of The Governor  (New Media), set out early from Asaba on Thursday, March 21, 2024, to have 11:00am interview appointment with him in his office at the Bendel Estate, Effurun, Uvwie Local Government Area of Delta State.  

He speaks on what he has been doing at WUEDA since his appointment, maintaining that no effort will be spared to give the twin City (Effurun and Warri) a facelift in line with Governor Sheriff Oborevwori's determination to restore the lost glory of the oil rich metropolis. Happy Reading:

 _Tell us, so far, what have you done since assumption of office?_ 

Thank you. My style is simple. The responsibility is huge but like the slogan of the Boys Scout that says "BE PREPARED," I came prepared. 

Upon assumption of office, we immediately swung into action, sensitizing our people, to let them know that you have a new Sheriff in town and it's not business as usual, so that when you carry out your actions, people will not see it as oppression. 

We met with the Local Government Chairmen on ground, covering Warri, Uvwie and Environs. We have also reached out to the traditional rulers to also let them know that we are on ground to put them in the picture of our activities, so that when they hear of cries from offenders, they will know that it is a foul cry. 

We have to keep Warri, Effurun and it's environs clean. The era of 'I am not concerned' has passed. Yes we have been doing it and getting away with it but it is not business as usual. 

Everyone is claiming to do what is right and not what is wrong but we are doing the wrong thing at the same time. 

After the sensitization process, we delved into media. We visited about three to four radio stations establishing relationships among citizens, as in doing jingles to sensitize the public that this Oborevwori administration has zero tolerance to any negative attitude. We stand for positivity and will work with him by God's grace. We are 100 percent result oriented and we letting Deltans know it is no longer business as usual. There is this song that says: "The bad bad things we used to do, we will do them no more."

This Agency as it is right now, has not done any award of contracts to anyone but the one, two or three projects we met we are following up to the latter. We are doing supervision on them, telling them it is not business as usual, letting the contractors know that we must get it right this time. We are bringing the communities and contractors together in putting everyone on same page by letting the cat out of the bag. 

We have about twelve street road projects currently ongoing that this agency has been following up under my watch. Eight of them are already completed, the rest are ongoing while two are 90% completed. This is an achievement of this agency. 

Most people don't know what this agency is doing, like road construction, drainage, clearing of wastes and the rest. We spoke to the contractors and the communities that the jobs being carried out by this agency should have a signpost as ordered by the Governor, His Excellency Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborewvori,  telling Deltans that these jobs are being carried out by the Delta State Government. If it is the Ministry of Works, put it there so that people will know that this is what the State Government is doing. 

Most people claim glory for what they did not do. We learnt that some persons will go and snap most of our completed projects ready for  commissioning. If you don't blow your trumpet, who will?

The government is doing wonderfully well, surely it must be better by the grace of God. 

If your road is being fixed by the State Government, say it, this will spur the government to do more. So many kilometers of roads have been constructed in Edjeba community, linking majority of internal roads to the river side.

Thirty years ago, Shell was like a paradise but less than 10 years now, I can't say, I really don't know how to classify it. We have equally called the Youth Executives in our mandate areas to a round table discussion. 

Ogunu is a big community with streets from left to right. Entering the Community down to the river has been tarred. It is for the youths to follow up as means of maintenance by making sure that the drains are not blocked. People will not see the handiwork of the Governor due to our carelessness if wastes are dumped indiscriminately into the drainages. We are calling them as an agency to do what is right at all times. 

The Warri and Uvwie drains have just been awarded and by the special grace of God, by the first week of  April, the contractor will move to site. We are going to make good use of this period, because the rainy season is fast approaching. 

The third phase is the part of Warri and Uvwie Local Government's flood control measures. The Warri Stadium is one interesting area because the Governor has given us his words that he will be giving the Warri City Stadium a world class facelift, pending when the drains are done with. Remember, whenever it rains, the flood in Warri City Stadium is something else and by the special grace of God, contractors will mobilize to site early April. 

As the Agency in charge, we have a lot to do. The expectations from our people are very high, we have a catalogue of requests from the communities, from the streets, confronting us with their challenges and that's why we are here. It is not strange.

 _What are some of the challenges you are facing ?_ 

In Warri and Uvwie terrain, one of the  challenges we have is human error. people are wicked, dumping of refuse indiscriminately is one of the things we are dealing with.

If you go to Ugborikoko, Ugboroke, Airport Road, Bendel Estate etc, so many people built their houses on the right of way leading to canals, dumping refuse indiscriminately. 

By the special grace of God, we are gradually correcting these anomalies. Fund is very key, if not, there is nothing that is too big for us to achieve.

 _How will you describe the attitude of residents to their environment?_ 

The attitude is zero percent.

I went to Uvwie Local Government Area Secretariat to meet with the Chairman because we applied to the Ministry of Justice to give us five magistrates to work with in respect of our Mobile Court and the Chief Judge has graciously approved the five Magistrates to us. 

We have been holding meetings periodically. Talking to people is not just enough without enforcement.  Like I said before, it is not going to be business as usual. We will be working together with a few of their environmental staff. 

Remember, the journey of a million miles starts with a step. We have equally visited some areas, we have cautioned them, we gave them warning. In some areas we gave them 7 days, some 21 days because our people are stubborn. From next week, enforcement will take place. It is not me that will be taking the decisions, it is going to be the Law enforcement agency. If they say your offence is two weeks imprisonment with hard labour plus fine, if it is one day or fine alone or both, then that is it. That is the only language our people understand, that is what we are pushing. Our people are difficult but the law will correct us.

 _Motor Parks are still scattered all over the place. What do you intend to do about them?_ 

The key area in this regard is the Uvwie axis. I want to appreciate the State Chairman of National Union of Road Transport Workers ( NURTW ) because before we took action, we met with various stakeholders telling them this is what this present government stands for, in order not to feed each other with wrong information. We all need to be on the same page to do the best of our abilities and he has been very wonderful. When we discussed, he washed his hands off the parks saying he is inclined with the decision of the State Government. This is just one of them. We have gone round to other places, you know it is a continuous process. If you go to the Effurun Roundabout, let us use that as a case study, it is 70% better than what it used to be. If you are coming from Agric Junction towards the Effurun Roundabout on the right hand side, we went there to address them and gave them 7 days to relocate. On your way to Sapele, we gave them their limit, we told them those extensions are prohibited. Towards the Army Barracks, we did the same. At the PTI Junction we did same and that doesn't mean we have achieved enough the way it ought to be. Anything illegal is illegal and that is why enforcement must take place. There is no head that is too big for the knock of the agency.

 _Tell us what you want the people to remember you for when your job is over?_ 

I am not doing anything for myself but for the entire State and at the same time not doing it for the Governor. We are not here to take any glory but to do what is right. If in 10-20 years time or once upon a time when Prince Ejinyere was there or when Rt Hon Sheriff Oborevwori was the Governor of Delta State, this is what was achieved, then, to God Be The Glory.

Most people today, I doubt if they met Ogbemudia, but people still make reference to him today. So it is a matter of making a choice that will stand the test of time and I strongly believe that, that is what the Governor stands for.

Let us be focused. Some people are saying that the Governor is working hard because of second tenure. Be rest assured that second tenure will take care of itself. Since the people are seeing the Governor is working hard and doing what is right, second tenure will speak volumes of itself by the special grace of God. 

What will I be remembered for, am I going to die? I will always be remembered because I will do that which is expected of me and that is doing what is right.

 _Sir, what is your vision for Warri and Uvwie in the next few years._ 

Like I said, I need all the desired support from the citizens. I can boast that what the Governor desires in Warri and Uvwie that will I implement. Warri is decaying or finished. Anywhere you go, people are talking about the lost glory. When people say if you get to Abuja, if you go to Lagos, making comparisons, it is so because the people in those places are maintaining a clean and hygienic society.

Whenever Warri residents drink sachet water, they drop it indiscriminately but when they travel outside the state, they do not do that there because they know the repercussions of it. They will hold the waste in their hands until they get to the appropriate waste disposal and do the needful. The other day, when I was going to Osubi, I saw a police van and it is like they just finished eating akara and bread, they just flung the waste paper and cellophane off their van indiscriminately along the road. You cannot do that in Lagos or Abuja because a standard had been set and that is the standard we want to set in Delta State by the special grace of God. 

Warri should have a very serene environment and that is why it is called Oil City. 

When strangers are entering Warri from Effurun, down to Jakpa Junction, they will be asking, 'where is the Warri?' They will be approaching Enerhen Junction, they will still be asking, 'where is the Warri?' And to NPA, same question lingers as a result of the dirty environment, because Warri ought to be seen as an Oil City, neat and serene. 

We are planning to achieve all these in the next few years. When that is done, when people are coming from Sapele Road approaching Warri, they should be happy that they are approaching Warri. It is our desire and I know we will achieve it. Warri should be a place where you have flowers, trees, a beautiful place where lovers will want to have some love walk. 

So, we will make sure that peace and security is restored back to Warri,  because that is where you can attract investors.

We will make sure we do our best and make sure the situation is clean, cool and calm for the benefits of all Deltans.

 _DG, is it true that the residents of Warri and Effurun are stubborn and if it is so, what is your final word for them?_ 

They cannot be stubborn. There is this local saying that, "every Jaguda get oga." Many are blind, not oriented or ignorant so to say. I do not want to use the word 'stubborn'. Dem say " if pikin stubborn, he go hear police word." The agency has an approach in doing things. We have dynamic cameramen, thank God for this modern world, if you are doing anything, they will show your  error, then we will know if you are truly stubborn. I do not want to believe in that word called stubborn. The Bible says my people perish because of lack of knowledge. Most of us are suffering from ignorance. Some are blind, some are wicked but if they see the right thing, they will fall in place.

 _Is there any time frame from whatever you are doing?_ 

What we are doing now, like the mobile court I talked about, there are things you can regulate, once you are given seven days notice or 21 days as the case may be. For instance, the  Keke Park close to the Technical College along Refinery Road have been informed that they must leave that area, including those car dealers along the road. We have given them our words of 14 days to vacate that place. Whatever we are doing, we document same, actions they say, speak louder than voice. So, whatever we are doing is time-bound.

 _Your final message  just before we go? Do you have anything that we have not touched that you want to tell us?_ 

What I want to say is that, we as the agency on ground, we pray for the opportunity to operate in the Warri, Uvwie and Environs. We have been receiving so many calls but we are not the only agency managing the Warri, Uvwie and Environs. There are some other Ministries or Agencies, so whatever they are doing, we should be in the picture just like the Federal Capital Territory in Abuja. We should be the people on ground. It is like assets and liabilities because the state is a big state, not just Warri, Uvwie and Environs.

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