Gov Dickson Eulogises Nonagenarian-High Chief Etonye, Advocates Value-Based Education System


Bayelsa State Governor, Hon Seriake Dickson has advocated the remodelling of Nigeria's education system to ensure that greater emphasis is placed on the inculcation of core societal values in pupils and students.

He listed some of the values to include honesty, integrity, loyalty, courage and hard work, arguing that the current situation where students are encouraged to acquire knowledge in the various subject areas to the detriment of these and other time-tested attributes does not promote patriotism, effective community service and national development.

The Governor, who spoke at a thanksgiving service marking the 90th birthday celebration of High Chief Brown Etonye, a retired mechanical engineer and educationist, at his hometown Toru-Orua in Sagbama Local Government Area, reiterated his call for Nigerians to love themselves and their country.

Paying glowing tributes to the celebrant, Governor Dickson described him as an epitome of honesty and selfless community service, who believes in quality education, noting that the investments he made in his children and others have paid off.

He said, ” These days we lay emphasis on education. We all want our children to be educated. But, there are so many educated crooks and sometime you think that the problem of our country is that we have too many educated crooks. While it is good for us to educate our children as we are seriously doing as a government in our state, it will be far more beneficial if we focus on the fundamental values of honesty, integrity, courage and even values of loyalty. For me, these are some of the things I think that my father, who is now on the other side of lifeendeavoured to inculcate.

So, I like to thank Pa Etonye also for inculcating the right values in his children and all the investments he made in them are paying off so handsomely in Jesus name.

Governor Dickson, who expressed appreciation to the Etonye family for organising the event to honour their father in his lifetime, urged the Ijaws to imbibe the spirit of celebrating their sons and daughters who have made the Ijaw nation proud in service.

“I want to thank you all for finding time to come to honour our daddy because in this part of the world, we don't know how to honour one another particularly in Bayelsa. We know how to tear down ourselves with our mouths, and that is playing out even as I speak in this state. But you see the massive transformation that our government has brought about in this state.

” Building roads, bridges, schools and hospitals, investing in security and promoting investments and placing our state on a level that was never before thought of. But what do you get? If you are thinking of getting commendation and appreciation, you won't get it because we don't know how to celebrate one another. Meanwhile, people who don't even do half what we do in other places are celebrated. You never can solve all the problems one time, but acknowledge it when an honest effort is being made.

Delivering a sermon titled “the Great Grace”, the Zonal Pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Light House Parish, Port Harcourt, Pastor Tunde Owolabi said, it takes the Grace of God for man to succeed in anyendeavour.

Quoting copiously from the scriptures, Owolabi maintained that, God's grace, which is sufficient to protect and deliver those, who properly key into it, however, warned Christians not to indulge in acts that are capable of depriving them of divine favour.

The cleric eulogised the virtues of humility and God-fearing qualities in High Chief Etonye, and expressed gratitude to God for His grace in the life of the celebrant, even as he prayed for longevity of life and other blessings upon the family.

Dignitaries, who spoke at the reception, including the paramount ruler of Toru-Orua community, Chief Guslin Tounarigha described the celebrant as a humble man, who has contributed immensely to development of the community.

In his response, High Chief Brown Etonye thanked the Governor and all those, who attended the ceremony forhonouring him.

Daniel Iworiso-Markson
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Bayelsa State

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