21st February, 2011
The people of Ogoni Ethnic Nationality have apologised to Rivers State Governor, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi over the embarrassment meted to him and members of his entourage during the January 4, stone-throwing incident at the 2011 Ogoni-Day in Bori.
Tendering the apology today at a well-attended church service at the Cathedral Church of All Saints, Bori, the traditional headquarters of the Ogoni people, the Chairman of the Ogoni Supreme Council of Traditional Rulers, King Godwin Gininwa, said the incident was most regrettable.
The Monarch, who x-rayed the events leading to the military occupation of Ogoni land and the killing of its prominent sons, said apart from apologising to the governor, there was a compelling need to thank God for prevailing over the situation.
â€œWe could have returned to those days when the innocent will remain in the bushâ€, King Gininwa recounted, while admonishing politicians from the area to desist from politics of bitterness.
He thanked the Governor for the love for the development of Ogoniland, appealing that the incident should not affect his love for the people.
In his speech, Rivers State Governor, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi assured the people of Ogoni that he would implement a development policy that will ensure that council chairmen are no longer unaccountable, if given the mandate to govern for anotherÂ four years.
Governor Amaechi, who addressed the people on various key issues, said an all-round PDP government in the state will stimulate growth and enhance focus for the administration.
He assured that the Rivers State Government will fence the property housing the Cathedral Church of All Saints, Bori with all properties encroaching on it, stressing that a new model primary school will be built within the church premises.
The governor, who re-stated his commitment to construct the Saakpenwa-Kono road, also said that he will, in collaboration with Ogoni sons in government, provide funds to assist the church build a better edifice for God in Bori.
Earlier in his sermon, Rt. Reverend Solomon Gberegbara, Bishop of the Diocese of Ogoni, Anglican Communion, commended Governor Chibuike Amaechi for providing purposeful leadership in the state.
The clergyman, who spoke on the theme â€œMy protection comes from Godâ€, assured the people that God will see them through their challenges if only they trust in God, saying that God will liberate his children from hunger and poverty.
Governor Amaechi attended the Thanksgiving Service in honour of Mrs Matilda Nnodim, Registrar of the University of Port Harcourt at Our Saviourâ€™s Chapel, University of Port Harcourt, where he announced that the Rivers State Government would soon commence the reconstruction of UNIPORT-Aluu link road and name it after Mrs Matilda Nnodim.
â€”Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt