REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, SENATOR IFEANYI ARTHUR OKOWA, THE GOVERNOR OF DELTA STATE, AT THE 2022 EDITION OF MARIS ANNUAL PUBLIC SERVICE LECTURE, AT THE UNITY HALL, GOVERNMENT HOUSE, ASABA, ON WEDNESDAY, 13 APRIL 2022
Let me start by commending the Maris Trust Council for sustaining this annual intellectual get-together on moving the State and indeed the nation forward through the formulation of enduring policies. It shows the strong patriotic spirit among you. I sincerely applaud you for the sense of belonging and focus in sustaining this spirit of the annual public service lecture.
2. I am no doubt proud that Maris Trust Council has remained united to promote this lecture series designed to tackle societal challenges and enlighten the public. This is being done in memory of Miss Stella-Maris Chukwufunimnenya Egugbo who passed on in 2010. May her beautiful soul and souls of all departed faithful rest in peace, Amen.
3. The 2022 Maris Annual Public Service Lecture is focusing on the theme: Selfless Service: A Phenomenal Virtue. This theme is quite timely and appropriate as it will serve to draw attention to the need for selfless leaders as we move towards another season of elections. Selfless service is a service performed without any expectation of reward or award for the one performing it. True selfless service encompasses helping more than our own physical family, it includes all humanity. One of the highest quality in life is to have feelings of love for all people, both those we know and strangers.
4. Ladies and gentlemen, great leaders are often selfless! They are servant leaders. They elicit action in others by seeing the value of others and aligning that value with a worthy cause. Selfless leaders get their egos out of the way in order to focus on the mission and those who accomplish it. On the other hand, selfish leaders want their personal pride massaged by intimidating others and feeling important.
5. I am an advocate of selfless leadership. Although, in our culture, there are some false perceptions around what sorts of people can be leaders. One important assumption is that to be a leader you have to be smart. But this is not totally true; at least not in how we normally define smartness. Good leadership arises from a complex combination of attributes and those depend a lot on the context and the issues at hand. A selfless leader figures out the kind of people he or she needs to work with and he recruits and cultivates them. Becoming a servant leader is the heart of leadership
6. Ladies and gentlemen, our people sincerely look forward to this lecture coming up with suggestions for solutions to the numerous challenges that face our leadership recruitment, especially now that we are close to series of elections. Irrespective of socio-cultural, economic or political status, our society needs selfless leaders. Let me also call on our people to be mindful of those they elect into public offices.
7. Once again, I commend and congratulate the organizers, for the successful hosting of the 2022 Maris Annual Public Service Lecture. It is my fervent hope that God will give you the enablement to continue to sustain this public lecture series.
8. I wish you all, a most successful and rewarding 2022 Maris Annual Public Service Lecture.
9. It is now my honour and privilege to formally declare the 2022 Maris Annual Public Service Lecture open.
10. I wish you all very fruitful deliberations.
11. Thank you and may God bless us all.
Office of the Governor,