BY TONY NYONG
UYO — AKWA Ibom State Governor, Chief Godswill Akpabio, has warned the 20 newly sworn commissioners and five special advisers to shun corruption or be shown the way out.
The governor who spoke while swearing in the new commissioners said: “Whether you are a permanent commissioner or special adviser, you must abhor corruption.
There’s reward for hard work and good services. We’re here to serve the public. If we fail, we’ll go back to the era some Nigerians used to laugh at us as house-helps. Government won’t hesitate to discipline anybody who errs. If you are not prepared to join us, then leave us. We will maintain the momentum of development.”
He congratulated them on their appointment and paid glowing tributes to people who had made great sacrifices to the development of the state particularly those that served in his cabinet, calling for a minute silence for the late Pastor Oyong Asukwo, the immediate past Commissioner for Youth and Sports, who died in auto crash less than two weeks ago.
Akpabio said: “Let me congratulate our brothers and sisters who have just been sworn into the State Executive Council. Let me pay tribute to all those who are not here today and those who have made serious contributions since the advent of democracy in 1999 especially people who had served in my cabinet as commissioners and special advisers o your contributions to the development strides to build a cohesive government founded on the principles of democracy.
“I just want you to know that to whom much is given, much is expected. I expect you to join hands with us the permanent secretaries and other key staff of the various minis tires and parastatals to fulfill the apirations and promises we made to our people during the electioneering campaign.”
Please note that you are not just sworn in as a commissioner or special adviser for your village or family. You are sworn in to serve the interest of the entire Akwa Ibom State. In your hand, you were holding the Bible – the supreme book we all believe in. You were not facing me but you were facing God while you were taking that oath. Therefore, in all your actions, remember the oath. You have taken the oath to serve all irrespective of tribal or ethnic sentiments. You have to take decisions that are fair and just for the progess and development of the state.”
Meanwhile, the newly sworn in commissioners have been assigned portfolios. In a letter signed by the Secretary to the State Government, Umana Okon Umana, those assigned include Barr. Ekpenyong Ntekim, Justice; Mr. Don Etim, Works; Hon. Eno Akpan, Lands and Town Planning; Mr. Aniekan Umanah, Information and Communications; Barr. Bassey Dan Abia, Transport; Dr. Bassey Antai, Health; Dr. Clement Bassey, Culture and Tourism; Barr. Emmanuel Enoidem, Housing and Urban Renewal; Mr. Enobong Uwah, Environment and Mineral Resources.
Other are Albert Akpan, Finance; Mrs. Helen Ukpabio, Education; Ita Umoh Udo, Youth and Sports; Eunice Thomas Ekpenyong, Women Affairs and Social Welfare; Barr. Austin Udo Mbeh, Special Duties; Martins Udoinyang, Commerce and Industry; Godwin Afangideh, Agriculture and Natural Resources; Barr. Effiong Abia, Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs; Barr. Comfort Etuk, Science and Technology; Hon. Adasi Ubulom, Rural Development and Sunny Anyang, Economic Development.
Special Advisers are Engr. Etido Inyang, Technical Matters; Mr. Senas Ukpanah, Investments and Industrialisation/Chairman of Akwa Ibom Industrial, Investment Company (AKIIPOC); Godwin Udom, Labour and Productivity; Mr. Uwem Ita Etuk, Co-operative and Food Sufficiency and Samuel George Frank, Political and Legislative Affairs.