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Umo Eno reveals economic masterplan for Akwa Ibom

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Pastor Umo Eno

Pastor Umo Eno, the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate for governor of Akwa Ibom State, promised that if elected in the upcoming election, his administration would create an inclusive, diverse, and industrialized economy.

The governorship candidate said that his administration will take advantage of the state’s resources to develop a robust economy while speaking at the inaugural Umo Eno Town Hall Series, a special interactive session with professional bodies and interest groups in the state, held at the Ibom Icon Hotel, Uyo.

Further elaborating on his vision for the State, Pastor Eno stated that the plans would be made achievable by building on the accomplishments of previous governors, who he noted have advanced Akwa Ibom from a purely civil service, to an economically- viable State.

“Udom Emmanuel’s Administration has completely moved our State from a core civil service State to becoming an industrialised State. Udom’s Administration has opened the gateway of industrialization in Akwa Ibom State through land, air, and sea. And in terms of land, we can see roads and all of the constructions.

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According to Pastor Eno: “Our theme is, ‘Connecting the Dots, Furthering Peace and Prosperity.’ We seek to consolidate on the economic gains of previous administrations. We envision to build a vibrant, inclusive, diversified economy using the abundance of our human and material resources,” he said.
The front-runner candidate pledged to work relentlessly with his team to lower poverty and unemployment throughout the state when discussing rural development.

“We have challenges that we must face and move our State to the next level. This is why some of us came up to run for the office of governor of our State. Issues to deal with include poverty reduction, food production and job creation. Poverty reduction for us is key, because if you get to the rural area, you’d see that our people need as much support as possisble. So, we hope to put adequate programmes in place that will cater to these people.

“We need to ensure that our youths have gainful employment. The challenge now is not just that they are unemployed, but they are underemployed because they do not have the skills for the right kind of jobs available.

“In tackling job creation, we want to develop the right skills. We want to ensure that they have the skill set that would make them employable as our new industries come on stream,” he said.

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On other sectors of governance, the renowned entrepreneur pledged to boost agriculture, tourism and education and above all sustain peace in the State that will guarantee the success of his economic blueprint.

“If we need to really develop as a people, we need to go back to agriculture. We should be able to practice agriculture on a sustainable and commercial level. And we will strive to initiate strategies to revolutionalize agriculture. Certainly, Agro-business will be the way to go…We will continue to build on tourism and infrastructure and maintain the ones we have already.

On the health sector, he said: “What our Administration will do is to concentrate on primary healthcare delivery especially in our villages, wards, and units, where at least, every ward will have a functional cottage hospital, so that the people living in the rural areas can have access to medical facilities. We will initiate a digital pharmacy too. These things are not rocket science…” Pastor Eno said.

 

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A’Ibom Government Distributes Exercise Books in Uyo Senatorial District

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…announces demotion of one head teacher for extortion

The Akwa Ibom State Government has warned head teachers of public schools in Akwa Ibom state to desist from illegal charges on school children or risk severe penalties.

This comes on the heels of the announcement that a school head in the State will soon receive his demotion letter, on account of extorting illegal charges from parents of pupils in his school.

At an event organised by the Akwa Ibom State Ministry of Education for the distribution of ARISE branded exercise books for the pupils of all public primary schools in Uyo senatorial district, the State Commissioner for Education Mrs Idongesit Etiebet frowned at acts capable of frustrating the noble intentions of Governor Eno, saying the Governor is committed to ensuring a smooth and efficient education system in public schools in the State.

Addressing a gathering of teachers and school administrators, the Commissioner for Education and other educational stakeholders emphasized that there is no room for any fee in public schools as the state is sustaining free and compulsory education.

She stated “I want to use this opportunity to warn all head teachers to do your best, do not collect money of any kind from students or else you would be demoted with immediate effect through the appropriate disciplinary channels”.

“Next week you’re going to hear that we are sending a head teacher who demanded the sum of a thousand naira from all new intakes and also extorted five thousand naira from each pupil to give them their placement letters.

“This was a very unjust act and so he will face the consequences”.

A member of the State Universal Basic Education Board, SUBEB, John Udo, said his board has concluded investigations on the allegations and has begun the process of refunding the illegal charges to parents in that school.

“Education is free and fair in Akwa Ibom State, you have not been asked to collect money from any student”, he said and lauded the Governor for the prompt payment of counterpart funding for all Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC projects in the state

Recall that Governor Eno during the commissioning of model schools in Uyo recently, had announced one million copies of customized exercise books for pupils in all public primary schools in the state.

Further presenting the books to the head teachers in the respective schools in Uyo senatorial district, Mrs Etiebet highlighted the Governor’s achievement in education under one year to include payment of WASSCE and NAPTEB fees to the tone of 1.5bn naira yearly, payment of bursary to all students, infrastructural development of schools, institution of 100 million Naira Educational Trust Fund for students with disabilities, provision of free school bags, free shoes, amongst others.

In a bid to ensure the exercise books get to the targeted beneficiaries, the Education Boss admonished all Head teachers to ensure the distribution in all schools are done under the supervision of the Governor’s Personal Aides selected from the 368 wards.

Stressing on the Governor’s commitment to Teachers welfare as evidenced in the timely payment of salary and recently announced wardrobe allowance, Etiebet called on all Teachers to reciprocate the Governor’s gesture with passion, commitment and dedication to duty and assured of tough times for all erring teachers.

Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of education Mrs Stella Etukakpan while setting the tone, highlighted the governor’s proactive approach since assumption of office, including unscheduled visits to schools and regular spot checks to schools.

She also commended the Education Commissioner for her consistency and passion towards proper interpretation and implementation of the Governor’s vision for education advancement in the state.

Also speaking, the Senior Special Assistant on Research and Documentation, Dr Essien Ndueso, highlighted the comprehensive monitoring mechanisms put in place to ensure the effective distribution of resources.

He explained that ward Personal Assistants have been equipped with iPads to document and report on the distribution process, ensuring accountability and transparency.

In the same vain, an Education Director in the State secondary schools board, Akparawa Udeme Udofia, described Governor Umo Eno as a “talk and do” leader, whose actions have consistently matched his promises. He expressed optimism that the distribution of exercise books would significantly enhance educational activities and mentioned plans to extend similar initiatives to secondary schools in the state.

Reacting to the Governor’s sterling performance, Mr. Anthony, on behalf of the head teachers, thanked Governor Eno for his unwavering dedication to education. He highlighted how the governor’s initiatives have fostered a passion for education within the school community

The high point of the event was the symbolic presentation of exercise books to head teachers in Uyo Senatorial district with a directive further distribute them to all pupils within three working days.

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Muhajid Alhaji Abubakr Dokubo-Asari Felicitates Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs on 60th Birthday

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Muhajid Alhaji Abubakr Dokubo-Asari, a steadfast advocate for the rights of the Niger Delta people has extended warm felicitations to Alabo, Dumo lulu-Briggs, head of the Oruwari Briggs Group of War Canoe and Chieftaincy Houses of Abonnema on his 60th birthday.

In a heartfelt message, Dokubo-Asari praised Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs for his remarkable journey, marked by unwavering dedication to politics without bitterness, and his tireless efforts to promote peace and brotherliness throughout his life.

“I salute his penchant for politics without bitterness, promoting peace and brotherliness,” Dokubo-Asari said, highlighting Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs’s remarkable ability to navigate the complexities of politics with grace and humility.

Furthermore, Dokubo-Asari commended Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs for his outstanding philanthropic endeavors, particularly in Abonema, where he has made a profound impact on the lives of youths, the aged, and women through various outreach programs.

“Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs has been outstanding in his philanthropic endeavors to touch and change the lives of youths, the aged and women in Kalabari kingdom providing succor and support to the weak and hopeless through various out reach programs,” Dokubo-Asari emphasized.

The Paramount Ruler of Edi Abali Group of War Canoe Houses of Kalabari kingdom also praised Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs for his selfless life, which exemplifies love for humanity and service. “Dumo’s selfless life exemplifies love for humanity and service,” Dokubo-Asari said, acknowledging Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs’ enduring legacy.

Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs, a businessman, politician, and philanthropist, is the chairman of Platform Petroleum Ltd, a petroleum exploration company planning a 10,000 metric tonnes refinery. His remarkable life serves as an inspiration to many, and his continued service to humanity is a testament to his enduring legacy.

As he celebrates this milestone, Alabo Dumo lulu-Briggs is undoubtedly grateful for the love and support of his friends, family, and the people he has touched through his philanthropic endeavors.

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

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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.

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