NEDU MARK YENAGOA
Former President, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has said he would dedicate his entire life to peace-building in the country and beyond to reciprocate the opportunity Nigerians gave to him to serve the nation
Jonathan made the pledge at a civic reception and home coming organized in his honour by the Bayelsa state Government at the Dr. Gabriel Okara Cultural Centre, Yenagoa.
The ex -President said peace was paramount to the development and growth of any nation, rather than political crisis that could cause chaos and anarchy.
“From 1999 to date, my people, Bayelsans and Nigerians have given me the rare opportunity for me to serve as the Deputy Governor, Governor of Bayelsa and Vice President and President of the country. I remain most grateful to all Nigerians. The best I can do now is to dedicate the remaining part of my life to peace building across the country,” he said
Hear him, ““Nigerians have given me so much that I cannot pay back. That is why I maintain that we need peace in this country; we need development; political crisis does not bring development, but rather it brings destruction. And, I believe the new administration will work with all Nigerians to make sure that Nigerians are happy.”
” I am indeed happy that one of the statements that President Muhammadu Buhari made is that he does not belong to any clique; he belongs to all Nigerians. I congratulate him for that bold statement,” Jonathan said.
The former President also said he and his wife, Dame Patience would remain appreciative of the love and support demonstrated by the people of Bayelsa, the Ijaw nation and indeed all Nigerians.
Earlier, Governor Seriake Dickson described the ex president as a hero of democracy in Nigeria and the African continent, who did his best to serve the country.
Dickson thanked Nigerians, particularly the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP for making a minority, Dr. Jonathan its flag bearer, which made his presidency possible.
“Today is a very symbolic day and on this day I can report to this state and the Ijaw nation and the world that our hearts are full. In one breadth, there is a lot of gloom in this state, but in another breadth, we are very grateful to God and to our fellow Nigerians, to our party and to all lovers of Nigerians that our dear brother and leader was given an opportunity to serve and he did it to the best of his ability.”
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Markson Iworiso, Dickson said “And so today, we are celebrating the glorious and historic home coming of our dear leader, the hero of democracy and the father of modern democracy. As I stood awaiting the arrival of the presidential aircraft, something historic crossed my mind, which is that, I was performing that duty for the last time and that filled me with a lot of thoughts and emotions. That is an honour that in a long while I would not have a rival in sharing; the honour of receiving a fellow citizen of this great state, a brother and a friend, a father and President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“Today, as I welcome you, our father and our leader, on behalf of the people of this state and the Ijaw nation, on behalf of all those who care, we welcome you.”
Speaking at the event, chairman , State Traditional Rulers Council and Amayanabo of Twon Brass, King Alfred Diete Spiff, urged Jonathan to count his blessings and lauded his leadership style while in office.
King Diete-Spiff, who noted that God has done great things for Bayelsa and the Ijaw nation, pointed out that late Chief Obafemi Awolowo desired to be in the presidency for just one day, but Dr. Jonathan occupied the exalted position for 3,000 days.