Delta State governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa and his predecessor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, have charged youths in Warri and the entire state to imbibe peaceful disposition, hard work and honesty to revive the near-comatose economy of Warri.
The duo made the remark on Thursday at the First Warri Economic Summit put together by the Warri South Local Government Area in conjunction with the Warri Economic Summit Group (WESG).
They said if youths in Warri did not have a change of mind by imbibing the virtues of hard work, integrity, positive mindset and peaceful disposition, the coming economic revival through the approved dredging of the Escravos Bar would be a mirage.
Okowa, who declared the summit with the theme: “Warri Rising” open, harped on the need to consolidate on the existing peace through attitudinal change among youths in the state.
He urged youths and other stakeholders to partner with investors especially in the area of security for Warri to work again.
“I pray that when the port dredging starts, we’ll cooperate with the government.
“Elders and youths should talk to themselves and stop every form of insecurity.
“With the dredging, Warri will come alive again, while the state government will do its best,” the governor, who lauded the organizers, noted.
He urged indigenes and residents in Warri to speak positive of the ancient town, saying it is ranking far behind Lagos when it comes to the crime rate.
“Stop giving a bad name to Warri. No city is free of crime. We should begin to speak positively about Warri. It is not worse than Lagos.
“We, do not have guns everywhere again. Warri is one of the most peaceful places in the country. It is a social melting point,” the governor enthused.
Okowa appealed to companies that left Warri in the days of intercommunal crisis to return fully and begin operations.
Meanwhile, former Governor Uduaghan, who lauded chairman of Warri South, Mr Michael Tidi for the summit, urged youths to let Warri work.
He chided elders allegedly fond of nudging youths to foment troubles with investors and ship owners to desist from such ignoble acts of extortion and brigandage.
Chairman of Warri South and organiser of the summit, Hon. Tidi, said whatever roadmap is arrived at after the summit would be implemented for the benefits of youths in the area.
Dignitaries at the summit included, Olu of Warri, Ogiame Ikenwoli, former NIMASA DG, Prince Temisan Omatseye, General Manager, Chevron Nigeria Ltd, Mr Sam Daibo, and resources person from across the business world and the academia.
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