Bayelsa Gov. Signs Education Bills Into Law

Environmental Sanitation
Bayelsa State Governor,  Seriake Dickson,

The Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, has signed the Higher Education Students’ Loan and Education Development Trust Fund bills into law, targeted at building the manpower base of the state.

Assenting to the two bills in Government House, Yenagoa, governor Dickson described the laws as the most revolutionary intervention in the education sector, as they would provide unique opportunities for the Bayelsa youths to advance their educational career.

The Governor, noted that, “The education sector has continued to receive priority attention, since my administration’s inception in 2012, the educational laws would provide a mechanism for sustainable development in the sector.

“The new legislation will go a long way in checking the issue of school drop-outs, due to financial constraints as provision is made for indigent students to draw from the Higher Education loan facility”.

Commenting on the Education Development Trust Fund, governor Dickson said “It was mandatory for all Bayelsans working in the public service, government officials as well as the private sector to contribute to the fund in addition to the 10 percent of the state’s Internally Generated Revenue in support of the fund on a monthly basis”.

To this end, he called on the organized labour and the people of the State to support rather than politicise the new educational policy, as the initiative would be beneficial to the average Bayelsan.

The Governor also noted that 50billion Naira has so far been invested into the education sector with the establishment of 25 constituency compulsory free boarding secondary schools, in addition to 15 model secondary schools, including the Ijaw National Academy, which has taken off.

Dickson, who announced the appointment of Prof. Turner Isoun, as the pioneer chairman of the State Education Development Trust Fund, said, the two boards will oversee the new educational schemes which will be established in due course.

Presenting the two bills for the Governor’s assent, Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Hon. Konbowei Benson said the Bayelsa State Higher Education Students Loan Bill was forwarded to the House on August 10, 2016, while the Education Development Trust Fund bill was presented on July 19, 2016 and passed on February 13, 2017.

Bayelsa Government To Pay Workers’ June Salaries

gov seriake dicksonThe Bayelsa State Governor, Hon. Seriake Dickson has re-assured workers of the state that payment of salaries for the month of June 2015 will commence this week.

The Governor said he had already authorized the payment of the salaries to commence from Tuesday, July 7.

Governor Dickson, who lamented the current economic downturn in the country, however maintained that Bayelsa State was not owing its workers, as it was the case with most states in the federation due to the sharp drop in oil revenue.

As part of efforts to meet salary obligations to workers, the Governor said that there has been a drastic reduction in government’s expenditure, adding that his office has not received security votes and some other statutory allowances for the past three months.

According to him, Bayelsa was one of the heavily indebted states upon his assumption of office but that the state is now ranked among the least indebted as a result of his administration’s prudent management of resources.

Dickson said: “We are not owing our normal monthly obligations to our workers. Just yesterday, after reviewing the financial reports for the month, I have authorized that salaries for June be paid and the process will commence from July 7.

“We have been slowed down in terms of execution of most of the massive infrastructural programmes that we got involved in over the past 3 years. To that extent, there are major challenges facing Bayelsa and indeed all states in the country but not to the extent of not paying our workers because of the structures and mechanisms we have put in place. We need the bailout because of the obligations we have to our contractors towards the completion of on-going projects.”

Although, the state does not owe salaries, the Governor lent his voice to the on-going call on the Federal Government to provide financial bailout to state governments, including Bayelsa to enable the state meet its outstanding contractual obligations.

Governor Dickson said, “We inherited a very high debt profile. The bond that was taken by my predecessor, Timipre Sylva is close to N100 billion when you add the interest elements, which we are servicing in order to maintain the corporate integrity of the state.

Gov Dickson Urges Rulers To Engage Town Criers To Sensitize People On PVCs

dicksonBayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, has tasked traditional rulers in the state to engage the services of town criers to further sensitize the people on the importance of the Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs).

The Governor charged the royal fathers to prevail on their subjects to take advantage of the extension of deadline by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to collect their PVCs.

Governor Dickson, made the call at the State Government’s ” Meet the people tour” exercise in Yenagoa Local Government Area.

Dickson said that the call has become imperative, in view of the State Government’s desire to achieve almost 100% collection rate to enable the people exercise their franchise in the forthcoming general elections.

He further noted that the elections would be remarkably different from other elections ever conducted in the country.

The Governor, who visited Biseni, Okordia, Zarama, and Gbarain/Ekpetiama clans of Yenagoa, urged the people to disabuse their minds from apathy and believe in INEC, assuring them that, the elections would be devoid of thuggery and other electoral malpractices.

At Biseni, the Ibedaowei King, Lawson Obireke and his chiefs council specifically thanked Governor Dickson for the assistance he gave to their people during the 2012 great flood and other government projects sited in the area.

Governor Dickson accompanied by his Deputy, Rear Admiral Gboribiogha John Jonah (Rtd), and other ranking government officials, assured the various clans of his administration’s commitment to providing more dividends of democracy within the limits of available resources.