The lawmaker representing Khana/Gokana Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Dumnamene Dekor, has reiterated his commitment to improving the wellbeing of his constituents and Ogoni people in general.
He affirmed that regardless of his primary responsibility of lawmaking, the welfare of his people would remain a top priority in his agenda.
The lawmaker, who stated this while dolling out laptop computers, generators and cash to 400 members of his constituency in Bori, headquarters of Khana Local Government Area of the state, said the gesture was part of an empowerment programme to complement their small scale businesses.
A breakdown of the disbursement showed that some of the beneficiaries received generators, some got laptop computers, while other persons received N50, 000 and N30,000 each.
He told the beneficiaries comprising of men, women and youths, that aside from providing adequate and effective representation, he also owes them the statutory duty of oversight function.
The lawmaker urged them not to misuse what they have received but put them into meaningful uses.
Dekor, a former Deputy Speaker, Rivers State House of Assembly, explained that laptop computers were given out to the beneficiaries as, according to him, “Ogonis must not be left behind in the digital world.”
The federal lawmaker, who also once served as Works Commissioner in Rivers State, explained that the gesture was not borne out of the norm or desire to be in the ‘good books’ of the beneficiaries, but rather to help them stand on their feet and fend for themselves and their families.
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“We are looking at using the very little that is available. It could be N10,000 or N50,000. How do we apply this to our existing small businesses? Mind you, some persons, the entire goods they sell may not be more than N5,000 or N10,000. If such person has N30,000 or N50,000, it will be a leap for them to improve on their businesses.
“That’s why in some of these programmes, we try as much as we can to let it trickle down to those who actually need it. And I believe, that for the 400 persons which cut across the 36 Wards in Gokana/Khana Federal Constituency who have benefited today, even if it’s a percentage of them, that gets going, I’ll be happy.”
He decried the federal government’s neglect towards the Ogoni people, lamenting that their sources of livelihood have been badly affected due to environmental pollution.
“Everywhere around us is polluted and the level of pollution is frightening. Our major sources of livelihood has been taken from us. So, what else can we do? We can’t fish or farm anymore.”
The federal lawmaker further charged the beneficiaries to take advantage of the improved security situation provided by Governor Nyesom Wike and the chairmen of Khana and Gokana LGAs, to conduct their businesses without fear of molestation.
“Our normal little activities of buying and selling have come back. What we are praying for now is how we can attract some industries into the place.”
He also expressed hope of improved power situation in Khana Local Government Area following the mandate given the Ministry of Power by Governor Wike.
“We have the population to support any business that comes here. As soon as we have improved power and security, I don’t think there will be any problem because we’ll move forward.”