DELTA Governor, Senator (Dr.) Ifeanyi Okowa has said Nigeria will achieve more results with trusted and effective electoral system.
Speaking at an inter-denominational thanksgiving service to mark Nigeria’s 60th independence anniversary at Government House Chapel, Asaba, Governor Okowa noted that Nigeria has made tremendous progress since its return to democratic rule in 1999 and much more will be achieved with a credible electoral system.
“Most people will think that we have not made progress, but, if we look through with all thanks to our military personnel who are here, who have also realised that we need to move with the rest of the world since 1999 – now 21 years that we have had a consistent democracy, whether we feel the impact of the development the way it ought to be or not, the fact is that we have made some progress.
“There are times when we could not have our democracy last one tenure, but now at least, even when the elections are not completely free and fair, it appears that we are learning lessons daily.
“The important thing is, we have an opportunity to determine to some extent, those who should govern us.
“We expect that it will be better and that the elections will be free, fair, and just; that the vote of the people will continue to count even as the vote of the people counted in Edo State.
“Is there more work to be done? Obviously, yes! And members of the National Assembly, have to visit the electoral act and I believe that everything that needs to be done for us to have free and fair elections, should be allowed, thereafter, we will begin to look at how we will manage it.
“We need to cooperate with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and ensure that we allow that which they have set out to achieve — an E Voting System to be achieved.
“We are aware that there are challenges with our system, but we must also realise that everything can be perfected with time.
“The vote of the people must continue to count and we must be sure that the people are the true determinants of those who lead them,” the governor said.
He also spoke about the disunity in the country, noting that the elites have to be blamed for the situation.
Okowa said, “the disunity in this country is attributable to religion, divisions in terms of tribe but very strongly, what I will call elitism.
“The elites completely, in most cases, tend to put themselves first before the nation and first before the rest of us who form the majority of this country; and it has kept us divided.
“We ought to ensure that those of us at the helm of affairs, not just those in government, in businesses, the traditional institutions and all people who are opinion holders, including our churches, the leadership of Islam play the role that is appropriate.”
He also used the event to call on the Federal Government to reconstruct the Agbor-Eku highway, noting that the road has collapsed.
Earlier in a sermon titled “Abuse Of Liberty”, the Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Delta,Senior Apostle Sylvanus Okorote, said that every freedom came with responsibility and called on Nigerians to work as a team in moving the country forward.
Okorote, who is also the Special Adviser to the Governor on Religious Matters, pointed out that Nigeria needed spiritual liberty to overcome its challenges.
He appealed to President Mohammadu Buhari not to allow anyone to lure him into borrowing to address infrastructural challenges in the country.