By Umoh-Obong Kingsley
The Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly Speaker (AKHA), Rt. Hon. (Barr.) Onofiok Luke, declared that it will no longer business as usual for any one launching any form of attack on the seat of the government and its occupant.
He made the declaration while giving his goodwill message during the end of the year Youth Carnival with the State Governor, Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel.
Rt. Hon. Onofiok categorically stated that “We have had leaders who superintended over certain offices. I wonder what those leaders teach us when they begin to insult authorities. I am not saying nobody should criticise the Governor or government, but we should bear in mind that we have a common patrimony which is the seat of government, and should be treated with respect.
“We are sending a note of warning to those leaders, whether in the central or state governments, irrespective of their party affiliations, that we won’t accept further insults on the seat of government and the collective intelligence of Akwa Ibom youths.
“Criticise government based on its activities, but don’t insult the occupant of that office because we have advised ourselves as youths never to insult the occupants of other offices in this land, ranging from the office of the president.”
Describing the Governor as the ‘Captain of Team Akwa Ibom’ for the sincerity of purpose he has in his heart for the development of the State, the Hon. Speaker said: “You have given the youths hope and reason to stand up to support you because you don’t only care, you have shown love to the youths of this state even in the cause of grieve.”
While thanking the youths for their continuous supports, he charged them to “rise to defend what is our own, and what is our own is the God-ordained man as the Governor of our state at a time like this. Just as God gave Obong Victor Attah the grace to serve for eight years, and the grace was made available for Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio to also serve for eight years, that God who is the same yesterday, today and forever, that same grace is available for Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel for eight years.
“As you return to your respective homes, you have just one responsibility – ask from us what government is doing – and take it back to your respective villages, beds, parlours and business places, and propagate the message of the achievement of Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel-led administration.
The Speaker reinstated the commitment of the House of Assembly to support the Governor for the development of the state, stating that “As the Governor has presented the 2017 Budget to the House, which is still being reviewed, I want to assure you that over 70 per cent of that budget is for the benefit of generation next, which is the youths of this state, and we will support the Governor to be able to achieve that.”
He also thanked the youths for giving government the peace and enablement to operation upon.