We have restored the pride of the Edo woman, says Obaseki as he lauded Edo NUJ

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From Moshood Olawale Karim

The Edo State governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, on Saturday expressed his gratitude towards the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Edo State council, for their unwavering support to his administration in the last seven years.
The governor who visited the Press Centre in Benin City during the End of the Year party celebration acknowledged the critical role the Union has played in ensuring the success of his administration.
He stated that without the Union’s good works, his administration wouldn’t have achieved much.
Governor Obaseki also noted that he sees criticism as a positive thing that helps the government to check itself and what it is doing. He emphasized that a vibrant press is necessary for a functioning democracy, and he endorses all the professional things that journalists do.
He further stated that the last seven years have been a blessing to him, and he has been fortunate to have people like the members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Edo State council.
The governor said: “You have been one of the pillars of success of my administration in the last seven years. If we didn’t have you, we wouldn’t have been driven to achieve what we achieved. I don’t see criticism as a bad thing. It helps us check ourselves and what we are doing. You will have a stunted democracy, if you don’t have a vibrant press.
“So, there is absolutely nothing wrong. There is everything going strong for the vibrant and strong press in a democracy. I am one of those who endorse all the professional things you do as a journalist. That is why u never see me one day get angry or use untold word to react to things I read and hear. If anything, I sit back and reflect on the views you expressed.”
The governor also spoke about his administration’s achievement in restoring the lost pride of Edo women. He noted that when he came into office in 2016, the image of Edo people and the state was at its lowest.
However, his administration has been able to turn things around, and the world now knows that the Edo empire was not a fluke. He also spoke about a young artist who recently told him that he is the biggest artist in Nigeria because he is an Edo boy and sings in Edo.
This, according to the governor, is a testament to the fact that they have restored the pride of Edo people.
Obaseki said: : “When I came into office in 2016, the image of Edo people and State was at its lowest. The confidence of the Edo person has almost disappeared. There was hopelessness. By February 2017, the level of human trafficking and illegal migration out of Edo State showed that we don’t have hope of anywhere to go to. Like I said our image was at the lowest. Our women were looked down on. We couldn’t come out with pride to say I am an Edo woman because of all sorts of insinuations.
“Today, if we have not achieved anything, we have achieved the Edo pride. The world now know, that the empire was not a fluke.
Continuing, Obaseki said: “Last night, I was discussing with one of Nigeria’s biggest artist. We call him Charlie Puppy. This is a very young man and what he said to me touched me a lot. He said I am one of the biggest artists in Nigeria, infact the biggest. And I am, because I am an Edo boy. I sing in Edo, the world hears me in Edo, in Africa, in Europe and I am proud. You know what, we control the creative industry.
“That’s a twenty something year old guy who otherwise would have thought that the only hope for him is to head to Libya to find his way to Europe. So, if we haven’t achieved anything, the fact that, we have restored our pride as a people, the country now looks to come to Edo. Whatever we say here has repercussion and ratification for the rest of the country. We dominate our space, and we shall continue to dominate our space. You made it happen. In a democracy, it is the people that determine what happen to them.
“The message am leaving with you is that Edo is Edo. Nobody from outside Edo can control Edo. We are who we are. We have our own civilisation even before the coming of the white men and we will continue to. We can argue, we can be critical but the purpose must be to make Edo better for the next generation after ours, to give pride to the black man.”

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Earlier, Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Edo State council, Comrade Festus Alenkhe, hailed the governor for his achievements in office and his support to the Union. He presented a compendium of qualified members of the Edo State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalist to the governor.

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