Barely two weeks on assumption of office as the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Deacon Udom Emmanuel taken some impressive steps that has remove doubt from the eyes of everyone in the state about his sincerity and commitments to completely industrialize the state in fulfilment of his electioneering promises during the 2015 governorship election.
First, as a true servant of God, and having known that he cannot achieve anything by his might and powers, the governor started his administration by committing the state to God Almighty to guide and direct his steps with the declaration of a 3 day fasting and prayers for God to heal the land.
This singular act was applauded and commended by all, and was described as the right step in the right direction. It has never happen in the history of the state, it served as a pointer to the focused and dedicated leadership with the fear of God that will come through Governor Udom Gabriel Emmanuel.
Having dedicated the state to God, the state governor immediately swing into action to keep faith with his electioneering promises that focused on industrialization, wealth creation, human capital development, and others. The first step was the inspection of Ibaka Deep Seaport project he promised to make it a reality when he became the governor.
True to his promise and good nature, the governor has set up and inaugurated a committee to under study the seaport project and report back to him with recommendations on the modalities to execute the project. Already, the Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel has taken steps to talk to foreign investors who have responded positively to come and invest in Akwa Ibom state.
As a competent administrator and industrial strategist, the governor of Akwa Ibom state knows the various channels to go into partnership of progress to achieve Akwa Ibom industrialization agenda. With his experience in the corporate world, the governor has not find it difficult in any way to hit the ground running with full speed and hope for a better Akwa Ibom. With this impressive beginning, the people of Akwa Ibom state are certain and sure that the governor means well for the state, and he is not intend to play politics with development.
He has already rekindled the hope, and earns the trust and confidence of Oro Nation who before now thought the Ibaka Deep Seaport project will not be a reality. It is true that the governor is matching his words with actions like he said during the campaign that his promises are his covenant with the people which he intends to keep it.
Gov. Emmanuel while inaugurating the committee asked them to review the Outline Business Case (OBC) and other relevant documents to guide in the timely delivery of the project and to ensure compliance with the ICRC Act, 2005 and the National Policy on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in the overall project implementation.
The governor noted “Ibaka Deep Seaport is an audacious attempt to re-write the maritime story of Akwa Ibom State. It holds the promise of an industrial revolution of our State. It holds the promise of the industrialization of Akwa Ibom. It holds the promise of the creation of over 100,000 jobs. It holds the promise of a self-sustaining commercial city with oil and gas support services. It holds the promise of our finally tapping into our awesome and largely untapped maritime potentials.
It is a seed of greatness which when we plant it, and it germinates, it shall provide economic and social shelter for millions of Akwa Ibom people. It is a project with multiple benefits to our state, our nation and our sub-region. It encapsulates the dream of this administration for the industrial rebirth of Akwa Ibom State. And the industrialization of this State is an article of faith with my administration”.
The Governor told the committee that the list of countries that trace their roots of rapid industrialization to seaports is endless. Foreign Direct Investments flows ceaselessly in Malaysia because of its freight business. Port Klang alone has trade links with over 180 countries, and more than 500 ports. With this, there is no way their economy will fail to thrive. Even the economy of the United States of America is also largely dependent on its waterborne trade.
According to Governor Udom Emmanuel, “more than 13.3 million Americans work in port-related jobs that generate nearly 650 billion Dollars in annual personal income and 212.4 billion Dollars in federal, state and local taxes. In Florida specifically, sea ports generate more than 550,000 direct and indirect jobs. The story is not different in Singapore and other Asian Tigers. It can also be our story. This is our dream and vision for our State. Together, we can get there. The climb might be steep. But I have never been more hopeful than I am today that we will get there through your significant contribution at this stage of our administration”.
The charged them to work with the right attitude, the right mind-set and the right passion to ensure the success of the project. He maintained that when they succeed, “we succeed as a people. Therefore, I urge you not to rest on the oars and treat this task as a stroll in the park. They must keep it in their hearts that to whom much is given much is expected. We expect much from them – in fact Akwa Ibom expects them to draw water from stones”.
The governor took time to select men and women who have the strongest set of skills to turn this dream into a reality. The Chairman of this Technical Committee for the Realization of Ibom Deep Seaport, Barr Mfon Usoro has the expertise, skills and experience needed for this task. The other members of the Committee are all men and women who have reached the zenith of their professions, and have competences needed for the task ahead.
Apart from making Ibaka deep seaport project a reality, the governor has also taken steps to revamp all useful ailing industries in the state and attract new industries, one of the industries taken steps to revamp by the present government is the moribund Peacock Paint Industry Factory located at Ikot Ekan in Etinan local government area.
The governor has announce plans to raise a technical committee to that effect to understudy and assess why the factory went moribund and how to revitalise the paint industry shortly after the governor inspection of the factory.
Within two weeks in the life of the present administration of Mr Udom Emmanuel, two committees on his industrial revolution agenda has been set up by the governor to squarely tackle the industrialization problem, and create employment for the people of the state. Truly this is the government in action, very sensitive to the plight of its people.
The governor who understands the huge employment potentials in the agricultural sector has commenced talks and discussions with foreign investors to come and invest in agriculture in the state. Already, he has assigned reputable indigenes of the state to carry out this task in diaspora which a committee on the revitalisation of the agricultural sector from the current subsistence level to commercial is expected very soon. These are indications that the governor is planning big for the state through mechanized system of agriculture in the state aimed at creating employment and wealth for the people.
Outside industries, the Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel has visit hospitals and schools not without a promise to give a first-lift of transformation. The governor while visiting St. Luke Hospital was conducted round various departments in the hospital. With this visit, the governor now has first-hand information on the needs of the hospital and how he will fix the hospital in a proper frame to provide effective healthcare services to the people of the state.