Delta State Governor, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori, Thursday, said the state ranked first among states in the country in Criminal Justice Reforms by the Abuja-based Centre for Socio-Legal Studies.
Governor Oborevwori stated that the state achieved the feat following the passage of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law 2022, and Administration of Civil Justice Law 2022 by the State House of Assembly under his leadership as Speaker.
Oborevwori stated this in his remarks during the swearing-in of three newly appointed Commissioners in Asaba, the state capital.
The new Commissioners are Mr Ekemejero Ohwovoriole, SAN, Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice; Dr Ifeanyi Michael Osuoza, Commissioner for Information, and Prince Kelly Kalanama Penawou, Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs.
He described the new Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Ekemejero Ohwovoriole SAN as a brilliant and capable lawyer schooled in the best traditions of legal practice.
“Deep, driven, and devoted to his craft, Mr Ohwovoriole brings to the office almost 30 years of distinguished service at the Bar”.
He challenged the new Attorney-General to sustain the state’s pace setter role in Criminal Justice Reforms, adding that state’s criminal justice laws are adjudged widely to be 21st century- compliant, especially with recourse to technology.
“The transition period of both laws ended on December, 22, 2023. So, both laws are now operational in all courts in Delta State.
“The rigorous and successful implementation of these laws is, therefore, imperative for Delta State to maintain its leadership position.
“Only recently, Attorneys-General of the south-east states adopted the Administration of Criminal Justice Law 2022 as their model, hailing it as “a unique framework for the administration of criminal justice.”
Oborevwori further remarked that the new Commissioner for Information, Dr Ifeanyi Michael Osuoza, is a tested hand and avid communicator in the field of political communication and information management, having served meritoriously as the PDP State Publicity Secretary in the last eight years.
“His appointment as Information Commissioner is thoroughly well-deserved. Dr Osuoza, popularly known as Agenda, is a committed PDP member, humble leader, avid communicator, and relentless public commentator.
“It is my earnest expectation that he will take the government’s information management machinery to a whole new level. I expect creativity and innovation in government communication in a way that ensures optimal, fact-based projection of the policies, programmes, achievements, and activities of the government.
“One major shift I will like to see in the Information Ministry is for it to go beyond the information arena and engage in positive citizen engagement and mobilisation.
“It is my considered view that stakeholder perception audits must be integral to the operations of the information ministry.
“It should serve in the best traditions as a sensor, gathering intelligence and inputs from the citizenry that would form the basis of the policies and programmes of the government.”
Governor Oborevwori stated that the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Prince Kelly Kalanama Penawou is a grassroots politician of immense stature with extensive experience in local government administration.
He said he expects nothing but excellence and exemplary performance from him, having served as Special Adviser on Local Government Affairs in the immediate past administration.
He charged the Commissioners to lead by example by being role models in their respective ministries.
Oborevwori said: “To the commissioners, I leave you with no charge other than the one I gave to your colleagues, and I quote.
“As heads of Ministries, your personal example is the most powerful leadership tool you possess. You must be role models in punctuality, discipline, hard work, excellence, honesty, transparency, and accountability. People will do what they see you do, not what you say. Hence, you must endeavour to match your words with actions.
“Let fairness, equity, and justice guide your actions, and you must give every citizen equal opportunity to benefit from our programmes and services. In this regard, you must shun ethnic politics and divisive tendencies. You are to maintain an open door policy in your ministries and be accessible to all and sundry.
“I wish to reassure Deltans that with the distraction of the court cases now behind us, this administration is poised to fully focus on the business of advancing Delta State through accelerated infrastructural development, more job opportunities, improved learning climate in our schools, and better working conditions for workers in the public service.
“What we have achieved in the last seven months will pale in comparison to what we are set to do in the months and years ahead. Rest assured, we are determined to make life richer, better, and more fulfilling for all Deltans”.
He charged all political appointees to roll up their sleeves and redouble their efforts to contribute their quota to the effective and successful implementation of the MORE agenda.
“We must reciprocate the massive mandate given to us by the good people of Delta State with sincerity of purpose, empathy with the people, and improved service delivery, in the discharge of our duties.”
Responding, the Commissioner for Information, Dr Ifeanyi Osuoza, expressed appreciation to God and to the Governor, Rt Hon Sheriff Oborevwori, for finding them worthy to serve as Commissioners.
He assured Deltans of their resolve to put in their best in the service of the state through the MORE agenda.
The Deputy Governor of the State, Sir Monday Onyeme, former Deputy Governors of the state, Chief Benjamin Elue and Barr. Kingsley Otuaro, Hon. Nicholas Mutu, the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Emomotimi Guwor, his Deputy, Rt. Hon. Arthur Akpowowo, State PDP Chairman, Dr Kingsley Esiso, Senator James Manager, Olorogun J. U. Oguma, Chief Chris Agbobu, Dr Gabriel Ogbechie, among others, attended the ceremony.