Just like most states of the federation, Ibomites will go to the polls on March 11 2023 to elect a governor for the next dispensation to pilot the affairs of the state for the next four years at least and maybe eight. Elections are seen as a referendum on a political party or a government in power, and the forthcoming gubernatorial election will not be any different.
It will avail the good people of Akwa Ibom an opportunity to tell the Peoples Democratic Party, Governor Udom Emmanuel, and Pastor Umo Eno if the party had served them well in the last eight years if Governor Udom Emmanuel had delivered on his many campaign promises in the last eight years if his policies and projects have impacted their lives positively, and if it is successful enough to trust Pastor Umo Eno, the PDP’s flagbearer to sustain the success story and improve on it.
In almost 8 years of Udom Emmanuel of the PDP at the helm of affairs of Akwa Ibom State, the success story includes increased effort towards the Ibom Deep Seaport project, which on completion it is believed will save Nigeria $70 million lost to illegal fishing, create huge economic and social benefits which include world trade. It is also believed on completion will promote an increase in seaborne trade, serve as a hub for the South-South and trans-shipment trade with West and Central Africa sub-region, with a very positive employment impact. It will also play an important role in the decongestion of Lagos Port. It will contribute in big measure to the economic growth of Akwa Ibom and the nation as a whole. This is because any port infrastructure investment project fosters economic development.
Many industries were established in the state and became partners in progress as they were quick to identify Akwa Ibom as the safest place to invest. The Jubilee Syringe Manufacturing and Kings Flour Mills at Mkpok are some of such industries.
We also saw Ibom Air come into existence and made the state accessible with an ongoing expansion of its fleet and routes, making the state just a flight away from major cities of the country. The enormous contributions to the resources and the economic development of the State are monumental. The State no longer exists as an obscure or abstract in the minds of many, it is now seen as a land filled with opportunities.
Pastor Umo Eno has promised Ibomites sustenance of the success of the last eight years, and this he has encapsulated as “ARISE” agenda.
The ARISE agenda is an acronym where “A” is Agricultural revolution, Tourism, and Environmental Management, “R” is Rural Development, Women and Youth Empowerment, “I” is Infrastructural Maintenance and Advancement, “S” is Security Management, Quality Education and Health Sector Management, and “E” stands for Economic, Industrial and Social Advancement. He has promised to start from where Udom Emmanuel stops and I say to myself, what else can the people of Akwa Ibom do?
What reinforced Pastor Umo Eno as a continuation of a success story is that he has been of tremendous service to Akwa Ibom as he has served as the Chairman of the Akwa Ibom Hotels and Tourism Board between 2004 and 2007, served as the executive director of Agricultural Investments, a directorate in the Akwa Ibom State Investment Corporation (AKICORP), while he is the current Commissioner for Land and Water Resources
He is an astute entrepreneur with many years of experience and is widely acknowledged as the largest private employer of labour in Akwa Ibom. His resume is impressive and he is seen as the man needed to take Akwa Ibom State to a new height of glory with his promises as he possesses great attributes of a compassionate leader.
So this brings me to the question; What choice do they have?
What option will they go for if not to reinforce success when failure can be undeservingly rewarded?
And this can only be done through massively voting for Pastor Umo Eno of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, as governor come March 11, 2023.
God bless Ibomites.
Moses Nsikak writes from Akwa Ibom