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Press Release: AKSG Questions NBS Statistics on Unemployment

The attention of Akwa Ibom State Government has been drawn to the ‘Labor Force Statistics : Unemployment and Underemployment Report’ by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), wherein it listed Akwa Ibom state as the state with the second highest unemployment rate in the country. This conclusion, which calls for serious scrutiny, is unbelievable.

The reality on ground in our state is in contradistinction to the Bureau’s report. A juxtaposition of the said report with the reality of the existence and operation of the numerous industries in our state, the recruitment into the civil and public service, Public Private Partnership initiatives, award of direct Labour contracts, our airline and general aviation businesses, qualitative cash support and interest free loans to entrepreneurs, financial and input support to farmers; the obvious conclusion will confirm that indeed the current administration has created quality jobs in an unprecedented manner. This reality is not attempting to deny the existence of unemployment-which is a global phenomenon worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic.

As a responsible government, we intend to engage the National Bureau of Statistics, to ascertain the veracity of their processes and results. Particularly, we will seek answers to the following questions :

1. What was the sample size used in the survey?
2. What was the spatial spread of the sample?
3. What population figure did they use to obtain the percentage recorded for Akwa Ibom ?
4. What quality assurance mechanisms did they employ?
5. What was the temporal spread of the data used in the analyses?
6. In order to ensure trust and confidence in statistical output, with which agency of the state government was the data source authentication done?

It is common knowledge that unemployment has its permanent corollary, a spike in crime, increased youth restiveness etc. In our state, citizens, security agencies and guest alike, agree without any doubt, that we are Nigeria’s safest state. How then can a state be the safest, which has witnessed influx of industries and other economic activities, purveyed by local cum foreign investors and still be the state with the second largest unemployment percentage?

The role of data in a survey is to reflect the existing reality, not to project the imaginary.

Signed:

Comrade Ini Ememobong
Commissioner for Information and Strategy
Akwa Ibom State
15082020

Akwa Ibom 300-Beds Isolation Center: A well thought-out Nigeria’s Miracle – WHO

Richard Peters

Stretching over a 240 square meter area at Ituk Mbang in Uruan LGA of Akwa Ibom state, is a magnificent architectural masterpiece which houses the Ultramodern Infectious Diseases Hospital, an irresistible structure reputed to accommodate the first state-owned molecular laboratory in Nigeria.

What is most amazing about the seemingly 8th Wonder of the World is that it took only 41 days to start the project from the scratch and completed with state of the art medical equipment and standard building with its attendant aesthetic quality.

The center which has been frequented by various stakeholders including officials from the World Health Organization (WHO), Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), Members of Parliament, among others was initiated by Gov. Udom Emmanuel for the smooth management of the coronavirus pandemic in the state as he deliberately refused to go for a temporary structure which may be destroyed by wind.
And in obeisance to the instructions of the Governor, the Isolation Center is standing ready for use within record time.

One common attribute of Gov. Emmanuel that gets much deserved praise is the speedy implementation and delivery of projects as and when due, and this has earned him commendations from renowned institutions including the WHO.

Worthy of mention is the smart disposition of the Works Commissioner, Akparawa Ephraim Inyang and his team who have not only ensured that the project is completed in record time, but equally meets international standard as recommended by the WHO and NCDC.

To the amazement of many, Akparawa Inyang who has often been described as a digital works commissioner that has penchant for details, has followed up the project from the 6th of April when instruction was given for the construction of the Isolation Center till now that the facility is ready, crossing every ‘T’ and dotting every ‘I’ with clinical precision. In most of those days at work, he overworked himself and even passed some nights in his car at the project site. His effort is commended by Akwa Ibom people.

It might be surprising to learn that the breathtaking facility that is stunning in it’s complexity has a 300 bed space structured into four wards, with 75 beds in each, 20 en-suites Doctors’ Quarters, 26 Intercom lines in each ward and 4 Disinfection rooms for Doctors and Nurses.
Equally sitting high in the facility are Virology and Clinical laboratories, Canteen, 8 consulting offices, 4 changing rooms with 2 emergency exits.

The Center built with security consciousness is well fenced with 44 security cameras fitted strategically around the building, in addition to 20 fire hose stations. The facility also has 2 Ambulances and a laundry. This is indeed a well thought-out Nigeria’s Miracle, as described by Dr. Sylvester Agwai, the state Coordinator of the WHO.

It must not be forgotten in a hurry that the idea of the construction of the Center was seen as a colossal waste of resources by some people, while many doubted the possibility of delivery in time. But this has gone a long way in showing that governance is a function of responsibility, which has been a major characteristic of Gov. Udom Emmanuel.

Both the Governor and the Works Commissioner were abused and insulted, but the result of a completed Isolation Center has quieted the naysayers, as the Center will not only serve the interest of Akwa Ibom people, but Nigerians in general.

The facility which will be commissioned on May 29, 2020, has earned Gov. Udom Emmanuel another point in the Completion Agenda’s scorecard. This is another milestone in Gov. Emmanuel administration’s effort to critically tame the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic in the state and efficiently manage any other Infectious Diseases that may surface in the future.

We will defeat this common enemy as the state government is not allowing Akwa Ibom people to wander like sheep without a shepherd. This is equally seen in the selfless efforts of the health workers and other stakeholders who have contributed their quota in the fight against the pandemic. They deserve our commendations for standing at the forefront of the battle. Now that the well-equipped Isolation Center is ready for use, our collective victory is sure.

2020 Easter Broadcast by Governor Udom Emmanuel

WHAT AFFECTS ONE, AFFECTS ALL

BEING THE TEXT OF THE EASTER BROADCAST (2020) BY HIS EXCELLENCY, MR. UDOM EMMANUEL, GOVERNOR, AKWA IBOM STATE – GOVERNMENT HOUSE, UYO

My dear Akwaibomites

My wife, Her Excellency, Dr. Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel and I share with you the joy of this season of Easter. Easter is a commemoration of the uplifting story of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, who in spite of being sinless offered himself as a sacrifice for the redemption of others, including his enemies, and became the atonement for the world ravaged by sin and other vices. This momentous event of sacrifice transformed humanity and remains the single most important event in the Christian calendar.

By His atoning death, Jesus Christ reconciled mankind to God, broke the wall of division between Jews and Gentiles and brought all of us, into the Household of God. We should thank him for this sacrifice which this season represents. Additionally, we should thank Him for sheltering our State from the ravages of this global pandemic.

This season of love and sacrifice has come at a time when most of the world is in a lockdown as a result of the need to stop mankind from being consumed by the fatal fangs of one of the most virulent pandemics in recent history – Covid-19. The times have given us a new lexicon or a new-fangled phrase – social distancing, but thankfully, not love distancing.

We should therefore, ensure that not one person in our neighbourhood is deprived of this essential ingredient by virtue of this lockdown which circumstances have forced upon us. Let us bridge the gap of social distancing with the cords of God’s love in sharing our foods and groceries with our neighbours.

We thank you, my dear compatriots, for your cooperation in this determined fight to rid our State of this virus, Covid-19. We thank you for your sacrifices and deep understanding. It has never happened in our lifetime that free citizens have had to be locked down in their homes, their freedom of movement curtailed and social interaction which is the basis of our communal life stopped. It is unthinkable that our Churches, businesses, offices and shops have been closed down. This is indeed a huge sacrifice. We thank you for enduring the pains. But you must remember that this season offers all of us in this lockdown the opportunity to look up to God for help and lock our faith in Him perpetually.

We have learnt a lot of lessons through this pandemic. Perhaps the most fundamental lesson is that it has brought home the reality in Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s words that “all life is inter-related. All men are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”

This inter-relatedness of things and situations account for the spread of Covid-19, which started as an innocuous disease outbreak in Wuhan, China but later snowballed faster than a hurricane into a global pandemic which has killed over 100,000 people worldwide.

What affects one person directly affects all indirectly. The reverse side of this coin is that over 2,000 years ago, the crucifixion of a righteous, innocent man at Calvary between two thieves spread the message of God’s love throughout the length and breadth of the world, giving hope to mankind and bringing peace and goodwill to humanity. What affected one person at Golgotha, has affected all of us indirectly and positively. Let us therefore look beyond Covid-19 to Calvary’s Cross for our help and salvation.

There is a proverb in Tibet that “tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength; no matter what sort of difficulties, no matter how painful the experience is, you face no real disaster except you lose your hope.” These may be the times that try the hearts of men, but we dare not lose hope. Let us stand firm in the belief that this trial of our faith, though it be tried with the fire of a virus, shall be found unto praise and honour and glory at this season of God’s love.

We must continue to stand together in unity as one people having one State and worshipping Only One God. We must turn again to the promise of Easter which is that what God did in the resurrection of Jesus, God will do again for this blessed State. This State is on the rise, our people are equally on the move, the leadership is people and Christ-Centric and our symphony of unity continues to ring louder and more enchanting. Let this lesson and impulse of love and amity drive us to find fortitude in our shared resolve and purpose in our common aspirations.

Let this Easter season remind us that we serve an omnipotent God whose steadfast love and tender mercies can never cease. Let us remember that as Jesus triumphed over death, we will also triumph over every agent of death including Covid-19. To our sons and daughters who are at the battlefront of our fight to rid our State of this virus, we salute your courage and appreciate the risks that you are taking to keep our society safe. We also salute the security personnel for maintaining the peace and security in our dear State, standing under scorching sun.

This may not be a happy Easter for them, but we know that as God rewarded the midwives of Egypt for their kindness to the children of Israel, He will reward every one of them with immeasurable blessings and protection. Let us pray for their safety and strength. Let us pray for the recovery of those who have contacted the virus and are receiving treatment.

As families in our different homes, let us thank God for making us in His image and taking the pains to redeem us to himself through the death of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

As your Leader, I feel your pain. What affects you affects me and what affects me, affects you. The death of any Akwa Ibom person diminishes me. That is why we are fighting this Covid-19 pandemic with all the weapons at our arsenal. We trust God, that at the end of the day, not one Akwa Ibom person will die from this pandemic.

Because your headache is my headache, and what ails or afflicts you also afflicts me, I have made elaborate plans for relief materials to be given to our people across the State. The food items, such as Flour were sourced from our flour mill, the rice, from our rice mills in Ini and Garri from our processing plants located in all the senatorial districts of the State. It is a moment such as this, that has borne out the vision I brought to the State, to make us food sufficient and ensure that our staple food items are readily available and at affordable price range. At the same time, our syringe manufacturing company has risen to the occasion producing medical consumables to meet the rising demands of the time. This, again, is the testament to our vision in health care delivery.

After this pandemic is gone, we will all look up to the hills and wonder from whence came our help. We would testify that our help came from the Only God who made Heaven and Earth. Who did not allow our foot to be moved. Now is the time to reflect on Jesus Christ and wait upon Him, knowing that they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. I call on our people to remain united and eschew all forms of bitterness and hatred.

Let me end this address by re-emphasizing the fact that the lockdown and other measures already announced in my previous broadcast to combat this virus are still in place. You will be notified when those measures would be relaxed. Together, we would defeat this evil virus and life will return to normalcy.

I wish all of us renewed strength this Easter. Happy Easter and God bless Akwa Ibom State.

18,000 Seater Eket Sports Complex for Commissioning, May 27

The Akwa Ibom State Government has assured the elders and stakeholders of Eket that the ongoing 18000-seater Eket ultra modern sports stadium complex will be completed by May 27 this year.

The State Commissioner for Youth and Sports Sir Monday Ebong Uko said the commissioning of the project will form part of the first year in office anniversary of Governor Udom Emmanuel’s second tenure in office.

Leading some leaders of Eket, including the Chairman Frank Archibong, Paramount Ruler Obong Etim Abia, the leader of Eket Senatorial District, Chief Nduese Essien, President General of Ekid Peoples Union Dr. Samuel Udonsak and that of Afigh Iwaad Eket, Pastor Godwin William among others, Commissioner Monday Uko said that Governor Emmanuel was passionate about enhancing sports activities in the state.

He maintained that the sports center which comes with a football pitch, tartan tracks, basketball and tennis courts, among others, is being constructed with the best standard facilities and specifications, adding that the major equipment and facilities for the edifice had been imported from the best producers in the global sports industry.

“As you can see, work in the facility is on course and before the rains set in, we would have been done with the roofing and laying of the turf and tracks.

“The Governor has given us directive to ensure that we deliver this project on May 27 and we are also bent on ensuring that we do not compromise the standards.”

Sir Uko maintained that despite series of negative criticisms, he has remained focused in his assignment to execute a world class facility in line with the vision of the Governor, adding that the best way to answer to such attacks is to show results.

The Eket leaders who were shown round facilities at the stadium expressed appreciation to the Governor for the project and urged that the stadium be complimented with ancillary facilities outside the complex.

Chairman of Eket Frank Archibong, said he had always been confident of the sincerity of the Governor towards the project, adding that he has always paid impromptu visits to monitor the quality of work and has never been disappointed.

“Since the state has more than one football team in the elite division, we would like one of the teams to make Eket its home ground to afford Eket people access to quality top flight football”, Mr Archibong added, maintaining that he will also institute sporting activities for school children and youths of the area.

The façade, the astro turf, the tartan tracks and seats are ready to be installed at the stadium, the Commissioner said while showing the stakeholders round the facility.

Others in the delegation were renowned Professor of Communication, Desmond Wilson, former House of Representatives member Bassey Dan Abia jr, former Commissioner Ita Umoh Udoh, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Nsudo Nsudo, state PDP Treasurer Akpadiaha Ebitu, Eket PDP Chairman, Emmanuel Mbong, among others.

32nd Anniversary Speech by His Excellency, Mr. Udom Emmanuel

US sues for collaborative efforts on Health Care delivery in Akwa Ibom

…congratulates Udom on his Victory at the poll

The United States of America has congratulated governor Udom Emmanuel on his reelection at the polls and other elected official from the state to various legislative Houses.

The United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Stuart Symington who led a delegation of USAID and CDC to government House on a courtesy visit to the governor,  said Emmanuel’s reelection places a great responsibility on him to continue to serve the people of the state and nation.

Symington who commended the governor various strides made in health care delivery and other infrastructural amenities in the state said he was looking forward to seeing the elected officials work to serve the men and women of Akwa Ibom.

He noted that among the reasons of his visit was to launch the most important efforts in medi-care that the US has ever made anywhere in the world to save lives first, otherwise other amenities put in place by government  would come to naught without a healthy family.

He sued for collaborative efforts between the United States Center for Disease Control and Government of Akwa Ibom state in the fight against HIV/AIDs menace and other diseases in the next one year.

In his remarks, Emmanuel expressed appreciation to the delegation  for choosing Akwa Ibom State as one of the states for the lunching of  the efforts ever made anywhere in the world for safe people, safe city, not only in terms of security but also in terms of healthcare.

He said his government would like to know the level of collaboration in terms of funding and equipment being brought in to the state by the American government in comparison to what the state has done.

According to the Governor Emmanuel, “whatsoever investment is made by the United States government; I will love to see transparency in accounting for those investments. That will encourage us to actually believe whatsoever is put across.”  Said he “So if American Government is going to invest a lot more, let’s see that transparency, Let’s be a partner not just in the target you’ve set, but to also know how the funds came in, how they’ve been spent and what they are being spent for.”

Speaking further, the governor said “I believe that at the end of the day when we take stock of what we have achieved, you will also be proud of what we have done and we also will be proud of what you have done, adding, “ I want to say here that we want to partner with you and this effort.”

Assuring the delegation of the government support, Emmanuel said, “I want to assure you we will not leave it entirely for your own people. We have a role to play, not just at the few hospitals you’ve been shown around, we are developing a whole lot of secondary healthcare facilities and we are going to make them well equipped to achieve our goal.”

I will uphold merit, not pressure from office seekers – Governor Emmanuel warns

Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel has restated his stand to promote excellence and merit in appointments and has warned Akwa Ibom stakeholders and political leaders to refrain from putting pressure on him over political appointments.

Speaking during the swearing in of newly sworn in Head of Civil Service and Permanent Secretaries at the Banquet Hall of the Government house, Governor Emmanuel said he may retain most members of the immediate past Executive Council because of the numerous projects he needs to complete under their supervision.

“Don’t come and tell me that this person didn’t work during the election and should be dropped, because everybody worked and they all supported me.”

“If you attempt to blackmail anybody, that will even spur me to reappoint that person.”

The Governor who charged the newly sworn in Head of the Civil Service, Elder Effiong Edem Essien and Permanent Secretaries, to raise the bar of excellence in the discharge of their responsibilities, also announced that more permanent secretaries would soon be appointed.

“Like I always say, nobody should send me text to lobby for any candidate because that is the surest route to the disqualification of such a person.”

“Once I receive a name of any director from a stakeholder, it means the person is not qualified and lacks self confidence.”

He expressed his desire to spread the appointments across the Local Government Areas of the State, but decried the absence of qualified personnel from some Local Governments Areas, an issue he said should be of serious concern to stakeholders in such areas.

While congratulating the new appointees, the Governor expressed optimism in their ability to deliver and further urged them to exhibit a high level of professionalism and tolerance in the discharge of their responsibilities.

He urged the new Head of Civil Service, Elder Effiong Edem Essien to maintain a good relationship between the labour unions and government for a robust industrial harmony in the state.

The Governor further used the occasion to appreciate the immediate past Head of Service, Mrs Ekerebong Akpan for her meritorious services to the State and the improvement witnessed in the State’s Civil Service.

Governor Emmanuel said Mr Effiong Edet Ekpenyong, Mr Inyang Inyang Jameson and Mr Imoh Bassey Inyang the new Permanent Secretaries were selected on merit from among the various directors and deputy directors who he personally interviewed.

He further charged the newly sworn in Permanent Secretaries to abide by the oaths they have taken and ensure that their personal interest does not overide the discharge of their official duties.

“People should understand that appointments as Permanet Secretaries are not promotions that come automatically because one has reached Grade Level 17, and so cannot get to everybody,” the Governor stated.

The newly inaugurated Head of the State Civil Service, Elder Effiong Essien who spoke with Journalists shortly after his swearing in, appreciated Governor Emmanuel for finding him worthy for the appointment and pledged to selflessly discharge his duties in the interest of the state.

The event was attended by the Deputy Governor, Mr Moses Ekpo, the State PDP Chairman, Obong Paul Ekpo, former Governor, Idongesit Nkanga, the PDP National Legal Adviser, Barr. Emmanuel Enoidem, past and present government officials as well as families and friends of those appointed.

Ndifreke P. Akpan (Govt House)

Governor Emmanuel Seeks Airforce Presence, As Combat Games Ends In Uyo

Ndifreke Akpan (Govt House)

The third edition of the Nigerian Airforce Inter-Command Combat Sports Competition tagged, Uyo 2018 has ended with a call for the establishment of an air-force operational base in Akwa Ibom State.

The week long event at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo was declared closed by Governor Udom Emmanuel who stated the willingness of his Government to partner the Nigerian Airforce to establish its presence in the state.

Governor Emmanuel announced that Government had already secured land for the Airforce to establish an Air Operational Base in Akwa Ibom State and explained to the Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Sadique Abubakar, the efforts he was making to achieve that purpose.
“When you see me struggling to even do a taxi way that can also serve as a second runway at Ibom International Airport in case of any emergency, it is because of your promise that you will give me an Air Operational Base here”.

The State Chief Executive commended President Muhammadu Buhari for approving the release of resources used to enhance professionalism within the Armed Forces describing it as a good development.

He expressed appreciation to the Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Abubakar for the choice of Akwa Ibom as the venue for the NAF Competition and noted that it was a great honour and show of brotherhood.

Mr Emmanuel further commended the Chief of Air Staff for creating a workable and pragmatic vision for the Nigerian Airforce explaining that the key element in his leadership approach is to reposition NAF into a highly professional and discipline force through capacity building initiative.

This, according to the Governor, is for effective, efficient and timely employment of Air Power in response to Nigeria’s National Security imperatives.

The Governor further stated, “I am convinced that the first and the last key drivers of his vision which are human capacity development through robust and result oriented training for enhanced professional performance as well as focused on comradeship, regimentation and inter-service cooperation is the reason for this sports competition.”

Governor Emmanuel who presented Trophies and Medals to the overall winner, Ground Training Command with six gold and three bronze medals, applauded the team and other participants for being part of the week long event.

He also extended words of appreciation to the Armed Forces and other Para-Military Agencies for collaborating with the state to ensure effective security but encouraged them to do more.

The Governor however observed with dismay the non-availability of any project executed by the Federal Government in Akwa Ibom State being the number one oil producer in the country and enjoined the contingents to take out time and ground the state to see what his administration was struggling to do.

He stated that the State Government was building infrastructure, economy and the people and emphasized that the primary responsibility of any government was the social contract of protecting lives and property; an aspect taken as a sacred responsibility with very serious approach by his administration.

The third edition of the NAF Sports Competition saw Team Logistics Command emerged second while Team Tactical Air Command secured the third place.

At the event, the state Deputy Governor, Mr Moses Ekpo, Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar and Air Commodore Idongesit Nkanga, retired also presented Medals to the winners.

Sister agencies who took part in the invitational combat relay also went home with Medals as the Nigerian Army took first in that category followed by the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corp and the Nigerian Police on the third position.

Combat boxing, swimming, obstacles crossing, taekwando, relay race, tug of war and marksmanship were some of the events competed for during the 2018 NAF fiesta.

Cultural display, match past by the seven contingents and 4 × 400M combat relay were some of the highlights at the closing ceremony.

Senators, serving and retired military officers, Commissioners and Special Advisers, other top politicians and many other prominent citizens joined the Governor as he declared the competition closed.

Governor Emmanuel Seeks Partnership With Chinese Ict Firm

Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel, has met with Officials of Huawei Technologies from the Peoples Republic of China to explore ways of partnership in Information Communication Technology (ICT) development in the area of Education, Health, Governance and Enterprise.

Speaking during the meeting at Government House in Uyo, Governor Emmanuel thanked them for taking interest in partnering with his administration, assuring that there are various areas available for the partnership.

He said he was especially interested in the area of Information Communication Technology, which is a major driver of development the world over.

Governor Emmanuel recounted that when Huawei came into Nigeria, it focused on the telecommunications sector, and cited his role in the company’s success with major financial institutions in the country.

“I am happy you said you can discuss areas of Education, Health, Governance and Enterprise. Today, once you look at the 10 richest human beings on Planet earth, at least 60-70% of them will be ICT related. I am a businessman, I go where money is, so I follow money to where money is, if money is in ICT, I follow money into ICT so that nobody leaves me behind.”

Governor Emmanuel expressed belief that the strategic partnership will be of immense value to the youths who are the major focus of his leadership.

The Governor was of the opinion that young bright people of Akwa Ibom origin can also make it into global limelight with the right technological facilities and instructors in place in the state.

Governor Emmanuel said his government has done a lot in exposing the youths to ICT and urged that the programmes of the Huawei team should gear towards embracing the youths.

He maintained that the state has an E-library with thousands of e-learning processes, and the necessary infrastructure to actually develop ICT platform here and for me a launch out to the rest of Africa.

“So if you can make Akwa Ibom an ICT hub, I’m sure you have the right partner where we can actually make that happen. This is an opportunity for me to also see a whole lot because once you give me a fibre, I can do a whole lot, Housing Estate, Education, E-Governance, everything runs on communication and ICT, so it’s a good development.”

Team leader and Managing Director, Partners Business unit of Huawei Technologies Company, Mr Ken Zhao Wenjun said Huawei came to seek strategic partnership with Akwa Ibom State Government, looking into different sectors

He maintained that Huawei is already number one in the telecom areas and is ranked the third best in the world in phones and tablets production.

He said their enterprise unit has succeeded through their collaboration with thousands of Partners.

The Investors were led by the Commissioner for Science and Technology, Prof. Nse Udo Essien, accompanied by the Chairman of the Foreign Direct Investment Committee, Dr. Gabriel Ukpe, among others.

Ndifreke P. Akpan reports from Govt House, Uyo.

55.1km Ibaka Super Highway Designed To Boost Economic Activities

By Ubong Ntekim.

In a bid to transform and boost economic activities and ahead of the Ibom deep seaport project, construction work has commenced on the Ibom Super Highway project linking the coastal communities of Eket-Ibeno to Mbo and Oron.
The 55.1kilometers highway with 3 spurs and multiple lanes when completed, will open up the environment for investors, and stimulate activities in the various support industries at the oil rich coastal zone.

Addressing the youths of Eket and Ibeno at the project site, the State Commissioner for Works; Mr. Ephraim Inyang-Eyen appealed for support and cooperation from the host communities to enable the contractors carry out their work effectively.

The massive project, according to the Works commissioner, will be carried out through the Alternative Project Funding Approach (APFA)
He hinted that the State government was committed to payment of compensation to owners of facilities which the road project has affected.

Commissioner Inyang-Eyen further explained that the Ibom Super Highway which is the first of its kind in the entire geopolitical zone was meant to enable the people of Akwa Ibom and investors alike to have access to the seashore where the Ibom Deep Seaport is cited.

Inyang-Eyen, however, urged all and sundry to continue supporting the government of Governor Udom Emmanuel, noting that his developmental goals for the State would be achieved through their collective supports.

Meanwhile, stakeholders of one of the host communities; Eket Local Government Area; the Executive Chairman; Rt Hon Frank Archibong and the lawmaker representing the area in the State House of Assembly; Hon David Lawrence were full of praises to Governor Udom Emmanuel for fulfilling his promise of transforming the highly populated area by bringing meaningful development that would touch the lives of the people as well as creating avenue for investment in their areas.

The duo however, pledged the readiness of the community members to collaborate with the contractors for them to expedite action on the project.

Speaking on behalf of the construction firm handling the project; Mr Chinedu Chukwuonye of Elba Construction Company, promised to carry out the job according to specification and international best standards and ensured youths of the area are carried along in the road construction.

Governor Emmanuel Assures On Akwa Ibom Airport Cargo Operation

Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom state has assured that his administration will not relent in ensuring the speedy commencement of cargo operations at the Ibom International Airport.

Governor Emmanuel stated this in an interaction with Government House reporters shortly on arrival in Uyo after attending the National Council of States meeting in Abuja .

Promising to give further details after commencement of work on the project, he said his priority is how to commence cargo operations at the airport.
”I really want to see how we can start cargo operations almost immediately.
He said “the entire region is due for logistics operations both by air and by the sea. We can’t just wait any longer. Let’s see what we can do for ourselves.”

Governor Emmanuel was full of hopes that the country’s Chief of Air Staff will facilitate his earlier promise to partner with the state in utilising the airport’s Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul facility.
“We are also hoping that the Airforce Chief who also promised us that Airforce will do something very urgent, will also try and see how we can use the MRO but we really really want to see how we can start Cargo Operations over here because a whole lot of people are suffering.”

“If you go to Lagos, you need to see the queue from Apapa Tin Can up to Western Avenue then up to Oshodi.”

He assured that with an enabling environment from the Federal Government, the seaport project will soon be actualised.

On the just concluded National Executive Committee meeting of the PDP, the Governor said they are still rebuilding the party and looking at developmental issues that could create employment for people.

Feyrep Launches Martha’s Pregnacare Outreach

By Koko Udonquak

Over 200 expectant mothers from the 31 Local Government Areas of the state today benefited from the first phase of free medical care , and as well took delivery of baby packs courtesy of Martha’s Pregnacare Outreach.

The programme tagged : Pregnancy , Child Birth and Beyond is a brainchild of Family Empowerment and Youth Reorientation Path-Initiative, (FEYReP) a pet project of the Akwa Ibom State Governor’s wife, Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel.

The progenitor of FEYReP, Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel while speaking , said the outreach became necessary to educate and assist the expectant mothers cope with the demands of pregnancy.

Mrs. Emmanuel while admonishing the pregnant mothers to always seek medical attention when need arises, said having recognised that the wellbeing of citizens remain an essential ingredient in state development , she with the help of her partners decided to organise the outreach.

The governor’s wife further advised the mothers to engage in family planning and support their husbands by engaging in economic activity that would ameliorate their sufferings after pregnancy.

Earlier in her welcome remarks, the coordinator of the FEYReP, Mrs. Ime Inyang appreciated the Governor’s wife for the programme, saying it is geard towards addressing the high rate of infant morbidity and infant mortality in the state.

Inyang added that Mrs. Emmanuel’s tireless passion for bringing succor to so many families through multifaceted social interventions has already earned her a place in history, praying that God will bless her.

Health talks by the CMD of Ibom Specialist Hospital, Dr. Iniobong Etukudo who spoke on ‘Prenatal and Postnatal Health Care’, Dr. Imaobong Inwang who spoke on ‘Common Factors of Infant Morbidity and Maternal Mortality’, Dr. Mary Udo who spoke on ‘Preventing Infant Morbidity and Infant mortality’, Dr. Enobong Mkpang who spoke on the ‘Myths and facts of Caesarean Section’ and Dr. Ini Akpabio who spoke on ‘Harmful Practices During Pregnancy’, all noted that Nigeria currently ranks high in infant morbidity and Maternal Mortality.

The resource persons who identified reasons for the high ratio, spoke against pregnant mothers patronage of Traditional Birth Attandants and charged them to always engage in proper medical check-ups in order to detect any anomaly during pregnancy. They thanked the governor’s wife for the platform to educate the pregnant women, saying it will drastically reduce the tide in the state.

In a vote of thanks, Mrs. Lovina Amos who spoke on behalf of the expectant mothers appreciated the governor’s wife for the educative platform provided them and promised to heed to the advice given.