THREE governors in the South-South region, Ifeanyi Okowa (Delta State), Nyesom Wike (Rivers State) and Udom Emmanuel (Akwa-Ibom State) have expressed a passionate desire to revive the docile BRACED commission.
BRACED is an acronym of the names of the six states of the South-South geo-political zone including Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa-Ibom, Cross River, Edo and Delta. The commission was formed to foster economic development and integration of the oil rich region.
But BRACED has been docile since the new set of governors took over in 2015, hence the latest move by the three governors of the three states with the highest oil production output to see to its revival.
The three governors who are of the country’s main opposition party, People’s Democratic Party (PDP) held a closed door meeting in Monday in Asaba in what many observers believed was a political move.
However, the governors told reporters that the meeting was not about politics but that they had an economic and security based discussion.
Gov. Udom who spoke on behalf of his colleagues, said governs of the South-South region were very passionate about reviving the docile BRACED commission in order to serve the aim of its creation.
He said the issue of insecurity also occupied front burner during meeting, noting that the state executives in the region were looking at ways to fortify security to sustain oil production.
“On behalf of all our colleagues from the South-South region, we just came together to discuss few economic issues and how we can revive the BRACED commission.
“And also, we looked at how we can try and fortify security network especially now that the oil prices are a little bit epileptic, we need to make sure that we maintain production.
“We are looking at how we can form that unity and shell will to see how we can tackle the issue of insecurity to maintain that level of oil production without necessarily jeopardizing our responsibilities to our people.
“Those are just few issues that we looked at, mainly the BRACED commission which is a vision we don’t want to abandon.
“It is actually a very good economic platform for the entire region to look at those areas of common economic interest so that we can also foster economic growth in the region,” he said.
Udom insisted that the meeting was purely for economic and security reasons and not political, adding that all political discussions are better done at the party headquarters.
“We could not have come here to discuss politics, you know our party is running now on a turbo cylinder, so if it politics we go to party headquarters,” he stated before hopping into a waiting car along with Gov. Nyesom Wike