Tinubu, Atiku, Oborevwori Eulogise Edwin Clark at 97

*Elder statesman reiterates call for restructuring

Chuks Okocha in Abuja

President Bola Tinubu, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and Delta State Governor, Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori, yesterday congratulated elder statesman and foremost Ijaw leader, Chief Edwin Clark on the celebration of his 97th birthday anniversary.
Meanwhile, the Ijaw leader and former Federal Commissioner for Information yesterday again used the occasion of the birthday to reiterate his call for the restructuring of the country if the current security, socioeconomic and other challenges facing it must be nipped in the bud.

President Tinubu in a statement issued by his spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale, joined Clark’s family, friends, and well-wishers to celebrate what he described as an inimitable figure in Nigeria’s political evolution.
The president also saluted Clark for his contributions to the nation in many capacities, especially as a guide to various administrations and as a catalyst for critical discourses and causes in furtherance of national development.

As the elder statesman marked his birthday, Tinubu wished him many more years in good health.
On his part, Atiku, in a statement signed by his Media Adviser, Paul Ibe, described Clark as, “a significant pillar from the old order that fortifies our fortress.”
According to the statement, “Chief Clark has always been a vocal voice that provides guidance and wise counsels to our national consciousness.
“On his attainment of a good old age of 97, it is only fitting that we join hands to congratulate him for this milestone and to appreciate him for the forthrightness he has always supported us with.”
Atiku further prayed that the Almighty God will continue to bless the elder statesman with more strength and vitality to keep serving Nigeria and humanity in general.

In his congratulatory message, Oborevwori, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Sir Festus Ahon,  praised the elder statesman for his dedication to the advancement of the Niger Delta and Nigeria.
The governor stated that leaders, at the national and sub-national levels, have continued to benefit from Clark’s astute advice on matters, pertaining to the country and the Niger Delta.
According to the governor, “It is really admirable how much Chief Clark contributed to the resolution of conflicts in the Niger Delta,” adding that the people of the region and the Country would remain thankful to the elder statesman.

He said that Clark was still a tenacious and ardent nationalist, with legendary zeal for his people’s interests and the peaceful coexistence of Nigerians.
“On behalf of the government and people of Delta, I heartily rejoice with our father and leader, Chief Edwin Kiagbodo Clark, on the occasion of his 97th birth anniversary.
“I join your family and your global admirers in commemorating 97 years of outstanding achievements and enduring fulfillment,” he said.
However, Clark reiterated his call for the restructuring of the country if the current security, socioeconomic and other challenges facing the country must be nipped in the bud.

He also called for a more united Nigeria where there would be more jobs created for the youths.
Speaking at his Asokoro Residence, Abuja during a church thanksgiving service held to mark his anniversary, the South-south leader who expressed delight and happiness to God for making him to attain the age of 97, stressed that as the National Assembly reviews the 1999 Constitution, it was necessary to consider restructuring.
He said: “This country must be restructured. President Tinubu should face the political problem of this country for the development of all regions.
“This country has to be restructured so that everybody will be equal; so that every Nigerian can aspire to the position he wants to be.”
Clark, who is the leader of Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) said: “I feel very happy; very much reassured about my own life. I feel very much fulfilled and I give thanks to Almighty God that I am 97.

“I appreciate those who are taking care of my welfare and my security. I thank Nigerians too.”
Earlier, the Assistant Priest of Saint James Anglican Church, Reverend Canon Bola Ogunyannwo, who described the celebrant as an individual who has dedicated his life to serving God, said, “He is a very humble man who God has blessed to achieve a lot for our nation. Who has sponsored so many persons to rise to greater positions. Politically, he has done his bit.”
Ogunyannwo also said so far, President Tinubu has achieved a lot with the signing of people-centred bills adding that a lot of other progress has been realised.
He said: “Nigeria that we have today. We are divided, we are not equal. Jobs are been taken by those who think the country belongs to them. We are not united. There is no one country in this country now.
“When people are united, they believe they belong to one nation, they believe the country belongs to everybody and we are all equal. It is then we can say, let’s fight for independence but not today.
“It is too early to commend on the government of Tinubu because Buhari destroyed this country before he left. Nepotism, religion and corruption ruling this country.
“Whoever is the president of this country must realise he is Nigerian first. They are to see to the security and welfare of this country. Not to divide this. Not to feel that only his people are competent, others are not competent.
“Nigeria today is different. We don’t have a Nigeria that we should be proud. The Nigeria we had 1950 and 1966 is different completely.”

Related Articles