Connect with us

Headlines

“Akwa Ibom Is Rising & The Golden Era is Here”- Governor Umo Eno Outlines 7-Month Achievements in New Year Speech

Published

on

In this heartfelt New Year’s message, the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, His Excellency Mr. Umo Eno, expresses gratitude to the Lord for the gift of life and extends warm wishes to the people of Akwa Ibom.

Reflecting on the achievements and progress made in the past seven months, the governor outlines key initiatives across various sectors, from agriculture and infrastructure development to healthcare and security. The message emphasizes the commitment to the ARISE Agenda, showcasing a vision for growth, prosperity, and unity in the state.

As the governor calls for continued support and prayers, he instills hope for a brighter future in the coming year.

 

O give thanks to the Lord for He is good, for His mercies endure forever.

MY DEAR AKWAIBOMITES
1.  Let me start by giving God the glory and honour for making it possible for us to be alive, healthy and sound to see this New Year. My wife, Her Excellency, Pastor (Mrs)Patience Umo Eno and I, wish you a very Happy and prosperous New Year. We are hopeful and confident that it is going to be a year of Restoration, of Increase and of Expansion across the lengths and crannies of this State, so help us God!

2.  On March 18, 2023, you bought into our vision of growth and development, as broadly laid out in our ARISE Agenda, and went ahead to reward us with a massive victory at the polls.

3.  Today, seven months after our inauguration, I make bold to say that in spite of the hazy economic horizon, the fundamentals of our development are strong and resilient. Akwa Ibom State is Rising with the ARISE Agenda and the Golden Era we had promised is already here. Even though we still have many miles to go, what we have collectively achieved gives us hope for what we can and must achieve tomorrow and beyond.

4.  Seven months down the line, every critical pillar of this well-defined and well-thought out Economic Blueprint has been touched and activated for the growth and continuous development of our State.

5. In the area of Agriculture, we have started the steady but firm commitment to engendering agricultural revolution in our State. The Ibom Model Farm, a collaborative effort with the world renowned Songhai Farms of Porto Novo, Benin Republic, was flagged-off a little over two weeks ago, in Ikot Edibon, Nsit Ubium local government area. It promises to be the most integrated farm in this part of the Nation. It will not only guarantee food security but will also create jobs for thousands of people and stimulate tourism.

We have requested the Local Government Council Chairmen, to donate lands for the establishment of demonstration farms in each of the local government areas. We have revitalized the Dakkada Palm Oil Estate with new seedlings and have equally invested funds in Cocoa plantations in the state.

6.  We are paying deep attention to developing and improving the quality of life of residents in both our urban and rural areas as well as the maintenance and expansion of infrastructure in the State. So far we have flagged-off and funded the construction of not less than 17 roads across the state. We have been intentional to ensure that these roads are selected across the three senatorial districts in the state. Some of these roads include:

• Construction of Ndiya Street, overlay of portions of Johnson Street, Water Works, Solar Light and Toilet Facilities at Akpan Andem Market, Uyo. This project was flagged-off and commissioned within the first 100 Days of our administration, in fulfillment of the campaign promises I made when I visited the market.

• Construction of 1.1km Access Road to Goretti Secondary School with 0.875km Discharge Drain in Ikot Ekpene Local Government Area.
• Construction of 1.3km Underground Discharge Drain from Atiku Abubakar Avenue to Olusegun Obasanjo Way, Uyo, currently ongoing.

• and the ongoing construction of the Ukpong and Effiong Essang Streets in Oron Local Government Area.

7.  We have also in the course of the last seven months, undertaken several ecological intervention projects such as:

• Construction of ravine control facilities at Etim Umanah Street, in Uyo
• Reclamation and construction of Udoinwang Road and the Construction of Erosion Control Facilities.

8.  In fulfillment of our campaign promises to complete ongoing projects initiated by the immediate past administration, we have released over Ten Billion Naira to get contractors back to various sites across the state. Works are ongoing at these project sites such as the Victor Attah International Airport Road Expansion and others located all over the State.

9.  In the Aviation sector, we have released about 6.5 billion Naira to support ongoing projects at the Victor Attah International Airport. We have also kept all our financial obligations with Airbus Corporation and about a month ago, we received the first of the ten Airbus A220-300 Series into the Ibom Air fleet. Ibom Air, which is the pride of our State, was one of the first places I visited shortly after my inauguration, where I had restated my desire to continue to support and expand the operations of that great project which is a testament to vision and creativity. We have invested heavily in the MRO and very soon, that will be fully commissioned.

10.  In the Power sector, we have directed that an operational audit of Ibom Power Plant be done. Our aim is to reposition that critical plant to yield the expected dividends for our people. We believe strongly that with adequate power, our entrepreneurs in the state can do better and our economy will be better for it.

11.  To maintain the peace and safeguard our status as one of the safest states in Nigeria, we have created a full-fledged Ministry of Internal Security and Waterways manned by a retired general of the Nigerian Army. Two weeks ago, we successfully launched the Ibom Community Watch programme with 550 watchers commissioned for Uyo Local Government Area. The objective of this programme is to raise a well trained team that will protect government assets across our communities and assist in the gathering of intelligence for our security agents. This initiative shall also create over five thousand jobs for our youths.

12.  Still on security, on December 13, 2023, I signed into Law, the Akwa Ibom Security Trust Fund Bill earlier passed by the State House of Assembly to help us mobilize funds to improve on the security architecture of our state. Three days ago,  we launched the Akwa Ibom State Waterways Security Assets whose central mission is to secure the waterways of the State and thus help protect governments critical assets, boost the state’s comparative advantage in the blue economy, support our fishermen through the provision of enhanced security among others. At the event, the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, was on hand to help us launch the 14 State Patrol Gunboats we had bought and donated to ensure this operation
runs seamlessly. We also signed a contract with the Nigerian Naval Shipyard for the construction of a Passenger/Cruise ferry, with the view to turning our coastline towns into tourism hubs.

13.  In the Education sector, we have started the construction of model primary schools, the first of which is to be commissioned at the Christ the King Primary School, on Wellington Bassey Way, Uyo. This is one of the projects selected under the One Project per Local Government Initiative which is one of our efforts at ensuring that we give government back to the people and allow the stakeholders to select and pick the projects they desire for their communities, so that they can own those projects. These projects once unanimously selected, will be executed within the next couple of months under the First Phase of this bold Initiative.

14. We have equally undertaken some critical interventions in the educational sector, some of which include:
1st Phase of Education Support fund for Physically Challenged persons in Akwa Ibom State studying in Nigerian Tertiary Institutions. So far, we have paid about 106 persons under this scheme at N250,000 per undergraduate and N300,000 per Postgraduate student.
• We have paid bursary to students of Akwa Ibom State origin studying in public tertiary institutions in Nigeria. So far, not less than 5000 students have received their bursary.
• the free and compulsory education policy in our state shall be continued and we have already paid examination fees for all Secondary School students. In addition to this, we have paid for the production of school uniforms, shoes, school bags and books for our pupils in primary schools.

15.  In the Healthcare sector, we have taken bold steps to fulfill our campaign promise to revitalize the primary healthcare sector to complement the great works done by past administrations in the Secondary Healthcare sector. The first of the Primary Healthcare facility which was flagged-off a little over two months ago, at Ikot Nkwo, Ibesikpo Asutan, is now ready and will be commissioned soon. The facility comes with the most modern equipment with Maternity Section, Laboratory, Pharmacy, Library, ICT Room, Consulting Suites, Emergency Unit, Immunization Centre and other critical services. This facility is being replicated in Oboyo Ikot Ita, Nsit Ibom Local Government Area and Eyulor in Urue Offong-Oruko Local Government Area. We will also have similar facilities in all the 11 other Local Government Areas that have chosen Primary Healthcare Centers in the One Project per Local Government Scheme.

16.  I have directed the Ministry of Health to get to work towards the establishment of Dialysis Centres in each of the ten Federal Constituencies in the State. This is aimed at mitigating the rise in kidney-related diseases in our State. We have, in fulfillment of our campaign promise, made plans to open a Medical Corridor between the Ibom Specialist Hospital and the Sheraton by Four Points in Ikot Ekpene. When completed, it rank among the best in the country. Contractors have also been mobilized to commence work towards the completion of the General Hospital in Ukanafun Local Government Area.

17.  We are determined to ignite the entrepreneurial spirit in our people and this vision is being championed by the Ibom Leadership and Entrepreneurial Centre (Ibom-LED). So far, we have successfully hosted the maiden Edition of the Made in Akwa Ibom Trade Fair, where the 400 registered attendees were given a grant of five hundred  thousand Naira each to progress their businesses. We have also set up and commissioned the Ibom-LED Tailoring & Shoe making Hub among other great things the Center is doing.

In line with our commitment to support our indigenous entrepreneurs, we have ensured that all contracts for the production of school uniforms and shoes for our pupils and uniform and boots for the men of the Ibom Community Watch are handled by our youths at the Shoe and Fabric Hub housed at the Ibom – LED Centre. I call on all of you to avail yourself of the programmes initiated by the Centre

18.  So far, we have paid over 12 Billion Naira in gratuities to retired state and Local Government workers and Leave Grants in fulfillment of my campaign promise to tackle the issue head-on. We have equally spent over Five billion Naira to augment the Federal Government’s Palliatives to cushion the effect of fuel subsidy removal and ensure that the welfare of our people is enhanced. For us as a government, we will ensure that the welfare of our citizens is paramount.

19.  The Tourism sector will continue to receive a major boost in our administration. We have constructed a 20-thousand seater amphitheatre which was used in the recently concluded Christmas Carol and would be used for other cultural, social and even religious events in the state.  We will establish a theme park at the Unity park to provide leisure services for our children. We will also revamp our tourist sites such as the Lord Lugard’s Amalgamation House, The Bridge of No Return, and the Women War Museum, among others

We have concluded plans to build a Centre for the Elderly Citizens in our state. This centre will house a hospital, library, supermarkets and other facilities for the use of our Elders.

I believe that we should take care of our Elders while they still live and appreciate them for their huge contributions towards the development of our state.

20.  We have also made plans to build an international Market in Ikot Ekpene Local Government Area. We believe that this market will boost the economic activities in our state and will reduce production cost for most of our young entrepreneurs who often have to travel out to buy their raw materials. We are committed to ensuring that work commences on this project within the first half of this year.

21.   My dear compatriots, what we have achieved in seven months gives us hope on what lies ahead in the New Year. We will continue to demystify the work of government and bring governance closer to the people. This we have already demonstrated in more ways than one. I have ensured that all the Wards in this state have a Personal Aide working and reporting directly to my Office.  I have ensured that all the units have a Watcher of the Ibom Community Watch drawn from them and I have taken time to consult with our stakeholders in most of my initiatives so far. I shall continue to run an all-inclusive government, paying respect to all our past leaders.

22.  I therefore, call on you to continue to pray for us, support us and bind our thoughts and actions with love and unity. We should strive to look out for the downtrodden and vulnerable and give them a reason to be hopeful. I have no doubt that our tomorrow will be better than today. We are determined to work to achieve that, and I know we can count on you to get this done.

Let me, before ending this address, thank the legislature and the judiciary for their overwhelming support in ensuring that we work harmoniously and deliver the dividends of democracy to our people. I call on you to continue in this collaborative efforts as we continue to partner with you to make Akwa Ibom the best place for our people to live in and do business.
23.  Happy New Year once again and God bless Akwa Ibom State, God bless our dear President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR, as he leads our Nation to a new dawn of development, God bless you all!

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Crime

Akwa Ibom NMA Chairman and Vice Chairman Impeached Amid Allegations of Misconduct

Published

on

By

In a dramatic turn of events, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) Akwa Ibom State chapter has impeached its Chairman, Prof. Emem Abraham, and Vice Chairman, Dr. Aniekan Utuk, following allegations of gross misconduct, high-handedness, and misappropriation of funds.

The impeachment took place during an Ordinary General Congress held on Wednesday at the NMA Secretariat, Kilometer 8, Nwaniba Road, Uyo.

The impeachment motion, supported by 71 members present at the Congress, marks the end of Prof. Abraham’s administration, which began on July 16, 2022, and was due to conclude on July 17, 2024. Following the impeachment, Dr. Usenobong Morgan Akpan, the Association’s Secretary, was elected as the Acting Chairman, with a vote of 61 in favor and 13 against.

During a press briefing at the Doctor’s Mess, Udo Udoma Avenue, Dr. Akpan outlined the reasons for the impeachment, citing financial mismanagement and procedural breaches. “The embattled Chairman and her vice were impeached for running the NMA Akwa Ibom State for five months without a budget while expending millions of naira, and presenting to the State Executive Council a financial statement for a free medical outreach accounting for only N6 million out of N34 million questioned,” Akpan explained.

Additional grounds for impeachment included breaches of the NMA National Constitution and Akwa Ibom State Bye-laws, unauthorized ejection of members from the association’s WhatsApp group, and high-handedness. Dr. Akpan called for the immediate withdrawal of privileges and recognitions previously accorded to the impeached officials.

“As the Secretary of the NMA, I was made the Acting Chairman by virtue of hierarchy; with the Chairman and Vice Chairman being impeached, I am next in line. We request that all forms of recognition and privileges accrued to the suspended persons be withdrawn,” Akpan stated.

In a counter-statement, Prof. Emem Abraham declared the impeachment null and void, insisting she remains the Chairman of the NMA Akwa Ibom State chapter. She accused Dr. Akpan of acting unilaterally and stated that the association’s ordinary general meeting (OGM) on June 2, 2024, was disrupted and recessed for security reasons, with no impeachment process initiated.

Prof. Abraham emphasized, “There was no impeachment process against me or any officer of the Association. The NMA AKS is intact, and I remain in charge as the Chairman.”

The Public Relations Officer of NMA, Dr. Unyime Ndoh, echoed this sentiment, urging members to disregard the impeachment claims and stating that the OGM would reconvene soon.

Further investigations revealed that the crisis in the NMA Akwa Ibom chapter intensified after the kidnapping of Dr. John Robbin Esu in Oron local government area on April 30, 2024. Following a 15-day ordeal, Prof. Abraham called for a strike to expedite Dr. Esu’s release, which led to internal conflict and the eventual impeachment.

The unfolding situation highlights deep divisions within the NMA Akwa Ibom chapter and raises questions about leadership and governance within the association.

Continue Reading

Headlines

Workers Protest at Federal Polytechnic Ukana Over Salary, Welfare Issues

Published

on

By

Workers at the Federal Polytechnic Ukana have launched a protest following a brief congress meeting at the institution’s TETFund auditorium.

The protesters voiced their dissatisfaction with the management’s handling of their demands, which include the non-payment of the 38% balance of salary shortfall, non-payment of promotion arrears, and the forceful conversion of staff.

Emerging from the congress, the protesters marched to the Rector’s office, holding placards and chanting solidarity songs while demanding the full implementation of their demands. Placards bore inscriptions such as, “SSANIP says no to unnecessary transfer of members,” “No to forceful conversion of staffs,” “Pay us our 38% balance salary shortfall (2016–2018),” and “Pay us our correct salary placement arrears (2015-2018).”

Mr. Tamunosiki Daka, chairman of the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Polytechnics (SSANIP) at the Federal Polytechnic Ukana, addressed the protesters, emphasizing that their actions were not confrontational but a plea for their welfare.

“We are not here to fight anyone; we are here to demand our rightful dues,” Daka stated. He expressed disappointment over the management’s indifference to their issues, including salary shortfalls dating back to 2015, despite numerous reminders.

Daka elaborated, “Over the years, from 2015 to date, we have been crying for salary shortfalls. When the visitation panel came, they promised to address it, but nothing has happened. We have met the management, but they did not provide any substantial reason for us not to go on strike. We wrote to the acting Rector, but she did not attend to us. The current Rector, Dr. Uduak Ndaeyo, attended to us, but still, no concrete answer was given.”

Highlighting the union’s procedural adherence, Daka noted, “We issued the necessary ultimatums—21 days, 14 days, and 7 days—before embarking on industrial action. Despite our pleas for the past six months, no action has been taken.”

Daka also criticized the appointment of a teaching staff member to the position of ICT, questioning its appropriateness. He announced that the workers would shut down all offices, including the Rector’s, if their demands were not met by Monday.

In a broader appeal, Daka called on President Bola Tinubu to investigate the personnel salaries of the institution from 2015 to the present, questioning the claims of full payment under the IPPIS platform.

“We urge the President to investigate all personnel salaries from 2015 to date. They claim they paid all shortfalls, but we have seen nothing,” Daka added.

The protest highlights ongoing frustrations and calls for accountability and prompt action to address the workers’ grievances.

Continue Reading

Headlines

Ibom Air Celebrates 5th Anniversary, Announces Ambitious Future Plans

Published

on

By

Ibom Air, the Akwa Ibom State-owned airline, marked its 5th anniversary on May 7, 2024, celebrating a significant milestone in its mission to provide reliable and exceptional air travel services across Africa.

Since commencing commercial operations on June 7, 2019, Ibom Air has demonstrated a strong commitment to world-class operational standards, gaining the confidence and loyalty of passengers throughout the region. The airline’s remarkable growth includes expanding its fleet, increasing its route network, and enhancing the overall customer experience. Notably, Ibom Air has maintained industry-leading on-time performance, a hallmark of its operations.

Reflecting on the airline’s achievements, Chief Executive Officer Mfon Udom expressed pride in their journey. “We are incredibly proud of what we have accomplished over the past five years. Our success is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our entire team and the unwavering patronage of our passengers,” Udom stated. He also extended congratulations to the shareholders, the government, and the people of Akwa Ibom State for their committed ownership and strong support from the start, which have been instrumental in the airline’s focus on excellence in connecting people and places.

In celebration of its anniversary, Ibom Air unveiled ambitious plans for the future, including positioning itself as an ESG-responsible company with a clear sustainability vision. The airline plans rapid fleet and route expansion to tackle connectivity issues within the African region, alongside a focus on leveraging advanced technology.

Chief Operating Officer George Uriesi highlighted recent technological advancements aimed at improving customer experience. “We have recently unveiled cutting-edge technology and infrastructure to improve our booking, check-in, and in-flight services while enhancing our self-service portal on the website to make it more user-friendly. Similar attention will be paid to one of our most critical touchpoints: our call centre. We plan to make it a 24-hour service very shortly,” Uriesi commented.

In the area of sustainability, Ibom Air is committed to reducing its environmental impact through sustainable practices. The airline introduced the fuel-efficient Airbus A220-300 aircraft, with an expected fleet of 11 aircraft to ensure its carbon footprint aligns with global best practices. Additionally, the airline’s corporate social responsibility program will focus on giving back to the less privileged and vulnerable, positively impacting its communities.

To further commemorate this milestone, Ibom Air will recognize staff who have been with the airline since its inception, celebrating their dedication and contribution to the airline’s success.

“At Ibom Air, today and every day, we appreciate our customers who have stayed with us and have been unwavering in their commitment to building this brand. As a result, we pledge to continue to uphold the highest standards of safety, comfort, and convenience for our passengers,” affirmed Uriesi.

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2017 Zox News Theme. Theme by MVP Themes, powered by WordPress.