… Insists on strict adherence to Covid-19 protocols
Governor Udim Emmanuel has expressed a conviction that Ibom Deep Seaport will open up Akwa Ibom’s economic fortunes, create employment, provide opportunities for wealth creation for the people and throw open the State as a major maritime hub in Nigeria.
The Governor made this known in his broadcast of Easter message, adding that with life-changing projects such as Sterling Petrochemical Plant in Eastern Obolo, where construction is in an advanced stage and the Federal Executive Council, (FEC) approval of the license for the commencement the construction of the long desired Ibom Deep Seaport, Akwa Ibom people were at the threshold of economic boom.
He commended the President and the Commander in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces, Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR) for giving approval for commencement of these projects meant to improve the economy of the State and Nigeria as a whole.
“About three weeks ago, we were also blessed by the Invisible Hands of God to have signed a 1.4 billion dollar Fertilizer and Ammonia plant with our Moroccan counterparts. The plant will again create huge employment and other supply chain activities for our people, which will transform us from a civil service oriented State to a fast industrializing one. These are huge achievements that should gladden the hearts of every Akwaibomite irrespective of political affiliations”, he stated.
The governor admonished all Akwa Ibomites and residents to thank and worship God for the redemption of the sins of mankind through the manifestation of His Divine grace and the gift of eternal life through the death and resurrection of His Son, the Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
According to the Governor, “over two thousand years ago, the powers of the day had sentenced a sinless, innocent and itinerant preacher, who went about doing good for humanity, to death by crucifixion. Roman soldiers cruelly executed the death sentence. Though he had the power to deliver himself, God’s only Son, Jesus Christ, went through this humiliation for our sake. This ordeal was captured centuries earlier by prophet Isaiah, “He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.”
He noted that these inspiring lessons make Easter the most important event in the Christian faith as they provide us with vital lessons in sacrifice and love, and speak to us about the need to place the common good above common greed. “We can, and should, use this season to heal ourselves of all selfish instincts, spirit of division and rabid ethnicism”, he admonished.
He explained that as an Administration, this is the sixth time he is sharing the joy of Easter together in the execution of the sacred trust the people invested in him. “We are also aware that, by His grace, we shall share the joy of two more Easter seasons together before the end of our mandate. As Easter affords us the time to reflect on events that took place two thousand years ago, it also affords us time to reflect on our journey so far as an Administration, particularly since this journey began on May 29th, 2015 with Jesus Christ as the Captain of our Ship”.
While noting that his Easter message is not one to be used to reel off his government’s score-card, which, without sounding boastful, has been widely chronicled and distilled all over the nation, but rather, is one of eternal gratitude for the endless love and grace of God over our affairs as a people and a State.
“Late last year, we launched an emergency on our education sector and as life gradually begins to return to normal, we pledge our commitment to ensuring that the leaders of tomorrow, our children, are given the necessary tools to be as competitive as their counterparts elsewhere”.
“Permit me to again reemphasize the need for our people to adhere to the protocols of the prevention of the spread of Covid-19 pandemic. We have observed the somewhat lax attitude of our people towards the observation of these protocols. Some have even gone to the very ludicrous belief that Covid-19 is a virus that only affects the rich and wealthy people. Nothing could be further from the truth.
He advised that Covid-19 knows no class, pedigree or social standing. “It is a virus that affects people from all layers of the society. It is still a clear and present danger to our collective wellbeing and health and should be treated accordingly. I have said it before and I am repeating it here: We do not intend to lockdown our State as we did this time last year, but it behoves on us all to follow these simple and effective protocols of wearing face masks, social distancing, constant hand washing etc”, he admonished.
The Governor said Akwa Ibom have started the process of administering the AstraZeneca vaccine on citizens and used the opportunity to dispel the misleading and false notions about the vaccine. “This vaccine is safe and the data so far released testify to this claim. Please make yourself available to take the vaccine whenever it gets to your locality”, he advised.
He congratulated Ibom Air for the recent award as the “Best Airline of the Year, 2020” and also, the 500 thousand passenger haul record it recently attained, submitting that the feat is a welcome development that in less than two years since it started commercial operations, Ibom Air has become a dominant player in Nigeria’s aviation industry. “Very soon, we shall be adding two brand new Airbuses to its fleet. This spectacular achievement should be celebrated by all Akwaibomites. When we board Ibom Air, and we are greeted in our local dialect, those endearing and symbolically enchanting words are not coloured by politics, rather they reflect the pride we should all feel for pulling off this great achievement” he announced.
An elated Governor Emmanuel also announced that the State recently won “Nigeria’s Top Tourist State, 2020” at a well-attended tourism stakeholders’ event in Abuja, noting with delight that all these achievements couldn’t have been possible if we were not doing the right things for our people which correspondingly have also been celebrated by the larger Nigerian space.
He regretted that some people still play politics with the development of the State and would go on the social media to de-market the State and her leadership. “They should know that truth cannot be buried. Nigerians are watching and are seeing the great strides that are going on in our State, hence the accolades we are receiving everywhere. It is sad that while other Nigerians are celebrating our achievements, this tiny section of our people are busy spreading falsehood, malice and hate all motivated by politics”, he stated.
The Governor announced that all over the State, road construction is currently on-going as his administration is determined to open up the State and create a rich network of economically viable road network that will help drive our industrialization and other developmental plans.