Palm Oil, Key To Economic Prosperity In N’Delta, Dikio Insists – – The Tide

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The Interim Administrator, Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), Col. Milland Dixon Dikio (rtd), has challenged youths in the Niger Delta to explore opportunities in palm oil business, describing it as the first economic mainstay of the region.
Recalling that the region was initially and historically notable for palm oil business, Dikio said the product was still selling more than oil and gas globally.
He said this in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, at a workshop organised by a group of ex-agitators working for sustained peace with the theme, ‘Niger Delta, a New Market to Explore’.
Speaking to over 50 youth groups that attended the workshop, Dikio, who delivered the keynote address, urged them to create the Niger Delta of their dreams, insisting that building a better region was their sole responsibility.
He said: “There is need for you to look inwards, develop your skills and improve yourselves to take advantage of the numerous opportunities around you.
“Niger Delta is blessed with immense natural resources beyond oil and gas. There is market for every good business idea. The Niger Delta is too rich for its citizens to be poor.
“There are other sectors and markets to explore. Before the discovery of oil and gas, the region was notable for the palm oil business which today sells more than oil and gas”.
Dikio further urged the youths to tap from the knowledge and skills of others by forming partnerships and leveraging on experiences of mentors and role models.
He said: “It starts first by developing the right attitude and imbibing the correct values. Every youth in the region needs and should get a personal vision of themselves and then determine to work with others to achieve it. If there is no challenge there is no success”.
In his address, one of the speakers at the workshop, Dr. Terry Bagia, said that there was need for strategic partnership in the region, and urged the youths to close ranks to ensure the right synergy.
Delivering his speech on conflict resolution and peace building, one of the conveners, Nature Dumale Kieghe, shared a personal experience of his transformation from violence to peace building.
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Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo, has reiterated the need for nursing mothers to embrace exclusive breastfeeding to facilitate the healthy growth of their babies.
Banigo stated this in her goodwill message in Government House, Port Harcourt, last Wednesday, to commemorate the 2022 World Breast Feeding Week.
According to the public health physician, breast milk remains nature’s food for ensuring the health and quality of life for infants through childhood to adult life.
She said expectant mothers should register at the government health facilities spread across the state for their antenatal visits, delivery, and post-natal services, adding that the Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike-led administration cares about the health of nursing mothers and their babies.
The first week of August each year has been set aside as World Breastfeeding Week, which is an initiative to raise awareness on the benefits of exclusive breast-feeding.
The theme for this year’s celebration is: “Step Up for Breastfeeding: Educate and Support”.
In an effort to reconcile the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) 2023 Presidential candidate, former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, and Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, the party’s Board of Trustees (BoT) has set up a Committee of Whole.
Recall that Atiku and Wike’s camp have been in a cold war since the party’s primaries and the unveiling of Delta State Governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, as the presidential candidate’s running mate.
Briefing journalists at the end of the BoT meeting, which lasted for about four hours in Abuja, yesterday, former federal lawmaker, Senator Abdul Ningi, said the committee was expected to interface with the warring camps.
He said, “We have set up in this meeting committee of the BoT to be able to interface between warring factions, particularly the acrimony that is taking place between the presidential candidate and Governor Wike.”
Ningi said the committee was also expected to reconcile other conflicts that were taking place in the party across the country.
“The committee is the Committee of the Whole; that means every other BoT member is a member of the committee. I cannot tell you the grievances and the timeframe,” he started.
On whether the call for the resignation of the PDP National Chairman, Senator Iyorchia Ayu, was discussed at the BoT meeting, Ningi said: “We have not even discussed any issue of anybody stepping down. What we discussed is what I told you”.
The Rivers State Government will soon commence the disbursement of funds to 991 Rivers indigenes under the Rivers COVID-19 Action Recovery Economic Stimulus Scheme (RivCARES) programme.
Head, State Cash Transfer Unit (SCTU), Result Area 1, RivCARES programme, Dr Christiana Sibor, disclosed this at a training workshop for facilitators of the programme in Port Harcourt, last Wednesday.
Sibor said 636 Rivers indigenes from the 23 local government areas of the state would get N10,000 each for six months under the social transfer while 355 others, mostly youths and women, would be paid N120,000 monthly under the livelihood grants.
She said the transfer scheme would be done in accordance with the state social transfer register.
According to her, the facilitators, 66 in numbers, will be sent to rural communities with a view to validating the social transfer register.
Sibor warned the facilitators against sorting in any form, and also enjoined them to find out those whose names are in the social register.
She said that the programme would help to alleviate the sufferings of the people as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, adding that those who fall under the livelihood grants will be encouraged to re-acquire the skills lost during the pandemic.
Also speaking, the State Technical Head, RivCARES, Mrs Imaonyani Ephraim-George, said the programme has different implementation platforms.
According to her, the cash transfer unit which is under Result Area 1 has the responsibility of implementing Disbursement Link Indicator 1.1(DLI 1.1) that deals with social transfer and Disbursement Link Indicators 1.3 (DLI 1.3) that deals with livelihood enhancement.
She explained that those trained would carry out the implementation of the cash transfer aspect of the RivCARES programme.
“The disbursement will follow processes. As soon as validation of the beneficiaries are done because we are using the state social register to pick the beneficiaries from the two DLIs and because the state social register has been done before now.
“They need to go back to the communities to validate if all the beneficiaries names in the register are still valid, if they are they still domicile here to know the actual beneficiaries, then disbursement will start”, she said.
George advised the facilitators to take their assignment seriously.
In his contributions, Head of Operation, State Cash Transfer Unit, Result Area 1, Emmanuel L. Phimia, said each of the 23 LGAs has three facilitators each.
He said the facilitators would help the government to identify potential beneficiaries of the programme.
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