By Shina Badmus
GbaramatuVoice, the Niger Delta leading and most trusted newspaper has presented her Annual Operational Budget for the year to the Fiyewei (Spokesman) of Gbaramatu kingdom, High Chief Godspower Gbenekama, to the tone of N134, 830, 000 (One Hundred and Thirty Four Million, Eight Hundred and Thirty Thousand Naira).
The presentation was made Tuesday, January. 14, during the award ceremony of the GbaramatuVoice Man of the Year, which took place at the GbaramatuVoice Office in Warri, Delta State.
Mr. Jacob Abai, the CEO/Publisher of GbaramatuVoice disclosed that the organization would be opening its TV, Radio Station and Printing Press within the year, while pointing out that the organization would be running an estimated operational budget of N134.83m for the year 2020.
He also revealed that GbaramatuVoice would be holding one of its biggest programme in Port Harcourt, the capital of Rivers state: a Niger Delta Oil Producing Communities’ Leaders & Stakeholders Summit, to commemorate its 5th year anniversary in August.
Reacting to the GbaramatuVoice’s budget, the Spokesman of Gbaramatu kingdom, High Chief Godspower Gbenekama enjoined all to put heads together to raise the required funds.
He said, “For me and the people of Niger Delta, GbaramatuVoice has made our journey smoother than it used to be.
“So, those of us that are here, we should also ensure that we expand the coast of GbaramatuVoice. We should publicize it to ensure GbaramatuVoice moves to Lagos, Port Harcourt and all over the place and this requires funds.
“We should try as much as possible to promote the brand, because people in USA., UK, and across the world are reading GbaramatuVoice, and I am proud to say that I have been part of this journey.
“I plead with politicians, stakehokders and all our big business magnet, so that the funds needed can be obtained.”
The award ceremony of the GbaramatuVoice Whatsapp Group Most Active Member/GbaramatuVoice Man of the Year, is an annual event. It rewards most active members on the GbaramatuVoice WhatsApp Groups over a period of 12 months.
The race to be recognized in the group began in 2015, where individuals would actively participate in the group to ensure their names were held in high esteem should they become the winner.
Running down to 2019, the event took another level, surpassing past events in this fold in the magnitude of celebration.
The 2019 most active group member at its first stage had 16 members selected but only 3 made it to the next round with one finally emerging the winner.
The initial selection of the 16 persons sprung from the four groups operated by GbaramatuVoice. From that selection, voting process on the four groups took place and brought the outstanding three: Engr. Michael Tonlagha, Comr. Danial Ezekiel, and Mr. Collins Oturubo.
At the end, Engr. Michael Tonlagha became victorious with 66,404 votes to his name which were remotely conducted and he received an historic celebration one would compare to a presidential recognition. He received an award, a medal, a certificate and to crown it all, he took home a trophy.
The Fiyewei of Gbaramatu kingdom, who was chairman of the occasion congratulated the winner, adding that he truly deserved it.
Gbenekama further stated that he shared the vision of GbaramatuVoice and was happy with the pace the organization was moving.
While addressing the crowd at the ceremony, he said, “What we are celebrating today is the fact that Michael Tonlagha has been very effective, very proactive and I am very proud of him.
“And all the people that were shortlisted, you are all winners, you have all contributed to the success of GbaramatuVoice.”
Mr. Abai, having thanked everyone for their presence, said the brand started in 2015.
He added that the WhatsApp group was one of the most active social media platform seen all over the world, where people were able to interact one-on-one. He said that, it was a platform for interaction, exchange of ideas and passing information.
According to him, “Since 2015, we have been using this same WhatsApp group to be interacting, passing information to the government.
“In the group, the government and her personnel are there, security agencies are there and everybody from all walks of life is duly represented.”