Delta State Governor, Sen. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, has given impetus to the 35% affirmative action for women in governance as he swore in five women among 18 new commissioners in the state.
Okowa made this known at the ceremony at the Events Centre, Asaba, and stated that his resolve on the issue was a deliberate attempt towards enhancing women participation in decision-making process of governance.
It would be recalled that in March, 17 women took oath of office as vice chairmen in 17 out of the 25 local government areas in the state.
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The governor disclosed that the commissioners were appointed on merit, and charged them to guard against complacency.
He urged them to commit themselves to their responsibilities with a greater sense of urgency in the remaining period of his tenure, adding that his administration was proud of its achievements in the last six years.
“I am especially proud that we have five women in the cabinet, the first in the history of the State. This demonstrates our commitment to enhancing women participation in the decision-making process of governance.
“We intend to keep working and delivering the dividends of democracy to our people until the end of our tenure. It is our desire to complete all the projects we have started and, by the grace of God, we shall do our utmost best to make that a reality.
“You must be innovative and strategic in your thinking, encourage and welcome new ideas, and be ready to take bold action.
“This administration has barely two years to go, but it is also sufficient time to touch the lives of many more people through innovative policies and programmes targeted at their needs and aspirations,’’ he said.
Okowa charged the commissioners to be effective communicators and ensure that their staff had a firm grasp of the Stronger Delta agenda, adding that they should learn to delegate duties and also encourage their subordinates even when they make mistakes.
Those sworn in were Rt. Hon. Evelyn Oboro, Princess Shola Ogbemi-Daibo, Mrs Rose Ezewu, Mrs Flora Alanta, Mrs Kate Onianwa, Chief Festus Ochonogor, Mr Charles Aniagwu, Chief Arthur Akpowowo and Dr Barry Gbe.
Others were Mr Julius Egbedi, Mr Christian Onogba, Mr Lawrence Ejiofor, Mr Ifeanyi Egwunyenga, Mr Noel Omodon, Mr Churchill Amagada, Mr Jonathan Ukodhiko, Mr Johnbull Edema and Chief Fidelis Tilije.
Responding on behalf of the new commissioners, Chief Tilije thanked the governor for finding them worthy to be appointed, adding that they were joyous to be part of the last lap of the administration.
He assured that they would be firm and large-hearted in the course of carrying out their duties.