Bayelsa State Governor, Henry Seriake Dickson, has conferred Honorary Education Ambassador on Africa’s first Nobel Laureate in Literature, Prof. Wole Soyinka.
The decision was to attract goodwill and support to the state government’s initiatives in the education sector.
The Governor, who presented the Letter of the Honorary Ambassadorial Award to the literary icon on Friday in Government House, Yenagoa, said the honour was bestowed on Soyinka because of his achievements and democratization of knowledge across the world.
According to him, Soyinka’s exceptional accomplishments in the field of Literature and his irrepressible spirit in espousing the right values of socio-political thoery and ethical standards, had placed him in a good position to fly the Bayelsa flag in the fight against ignorance and poverty of the mind.
While calling for support from all people of goodwill within and outside the country, Dickson said that, the Education Development Trust Fund is targeted at breaking the long years of under-development and deprivations suffered by the people.
He also appealed to the Nobel Laureate to use his clout to canvass support for the programme and assured prospective donors that any funds realized would be put to judicious use.
Dickson said, “Let me also appreciate you for your long years of commitment and dedication to the issues and causes affecting our people. And, you are still going on championing the cause for restructuring and bringing about a just and equitable world, Nigeria and the Niger Delta.
‘’I therefore have the honour to appoint you as a Special Honorary Education Ambassador of Bayelsa State. This appointment is made not only on account of your exceptional global profile and reckoning as a Noble Laureate but also for your well known love for our people and passion for the democratization of knowledge world-wide.
‘’It is my considered opinion that your exceptional accomplishments in the field of literature as well as your irrepressible spirit of espousal of the right values of socio-political propriety and ethical correctness stands you in good stead to fly the Bayelsa flag to fight against ignorance and poverty of the mind. It is therefore, my fervent hope that in your new role, you will enlarge the coast of the restorative educational programmes of the state government.’’
While accepting the conferment, Soyinka expressed appreciation for the honour done him and assured the state government that, he would do his best in advancing the cause of education in the state.
The main point of the brief conferment ceremony, was the presentation of a souvenir to Soyinka by the Governor.