By Itoro Emefik
When the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom state, Mr. Udom Gabriel Emmanuel took over the affairs of government in the state in 2015, following the general elections conducted by INEC (Independent National Electoral commission), he noted without any equivocation that a major ammunition in its arsenal, was the existence of an unbeatable relationship between its cabinet (compromising seasoned professionals, technocrats and politicians). It’s virile and vibrant public service all of who are knighted with the unbeatable team spirit, driven by the “dakkada philosophy” wielded by a visionary, articulate and consummate team leader, Governor Udom Emmanuel.
It is interesting to note that within the period under review, the administration still stands tall on this unique selling points, which have continued to gamer for its endless encomiums as well as visit by curious citizens and visitor from within and outside the country, many of whom are stunned by the pace at which transformation keeps gathering momentum. Gradually, Akwa Ibomite are truly beginning to feel the dividends of democracy, as access to basic necessities of life, especially to justice continue to be made easier through the appointment of the State Chief Judge, the establishment of special forces to checkmate the operation of transportation, reduction of Levies for transporters and other unions to ease the cost of living.
In the last three years and some month, the Akwa Ibom state government has commissioned life touching and transforming projects like the dakkada secretariat complex at Oron road Uyo. By this development, some civil service offices, which had hitherto operated in old, rented apartments now have space and comfort. This has been translated into better productivity by a more comfortable workforce, whose performance has been acknowledged publicly by Governor Emmanuel who poured encomiums on them during the commissioning of the edifice.
Realizing that people who have no proper direction are heading for destruction or hardship, the state government institutionalizes the AKEES (Akwa Ibom Enterprises and Employment Scheme) program as part of his people-oriented project. Over ten thousand youths have been trained and are benefiting from AKEES small and medium scale enterprises, thereby putting food on the table of an average Akwa Ibom person.
This government kept to its promise of making life less stressful to it’s citizenry by completing and handed over the modern specialist hospital and Etinan general hospital, Ikono general hospital with architectural masterpiece. Therefore the pains of traveling far distance from various locations to access health facilities has been put to an end, as quality services are available within neighborhood with highly competent medical personnel using ultra Modern medical facilities. Still providing the dividends of democracy as promised, the government has constructed, Rehabilitated and maintains numerous roads across the state.
As part of his campaign promise of industrialization, the state governor has revived the peacock paint with full operation and production so as to enhance the economic life of the masses. The metering factory is one project that has aroused the attention of the national assembly which the management has been invited by the Senate committee on housing and power to discuss how the company will be able to distribute the product for major power stations in the country.
Coconut refinery in Mkpat Enin is currently in its 99% percent completion and that will provide over 10 thousand jobs for Akwa Ibom people when completed. The agro sector of the economy is yielding the fruit of food sufficiency and wealth creation through the green house project along Victor Attah International Airport and the cattle ranch at Adiadia in Uruan local government area. Government has already concluded plans for the establishment of a tomato processing factory. Meanwhile, garri processing mill has been established across the three senatorial districts popularly called, the Ibom dakkada garri. The green house project does not just provide food security alone but also provide employment opportunities to the people of the state.
Governor Udom Emmanuel, who also visited the cattle ranch at Adiadia in Uruan local government area recently, explained that the facility which is fully integrated ranch will cater for about 2 thousand heads of cattle that will produce milk, yoghout and other products for industrial uses. The project no doubt is foreign investment with farmers from Mexico. As a 21th century leader, the state governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel has reiterated plans to establish another war college in the state in other to boost the security of the nation, especially in the oil rich region.
Apparently, Mr. Emmanuel stated this when he received the commandant of Nigerian Naval War College, Rare admiral T. C. Udofia and his entourage at the Government House in Uyo, saying that the strategic position of Akwa Ibom and it’s contributions to the nation economy well-being deserves special attention both in terms of security and infrastructural development.