UDOM EMMANUEL CAMPAIGN TEAM HITS IKONO
…. “we have started the process of transforming Ikono” -Udom
By: Mberekkeobong Essien
It was a homecoming rally of some sorts for Governor Udom Emmanuel, as his Divine Mandate Campaigns’ Organization train berthed Ikono Local Government Area for the mother of all governorship campaign rallies for the re-election of the state Governor and election of other PDP Candidates in the upcoming 2019 general elections.
The rally which had a constellation of youth groups, women groups, political stakeholders, the clergy, the business class and political stalwarts converged at the Council Secretariat grounds, Ibiaku Ntok Okpo, to accord a rousing welcome to the Divine Mandate team.
Addressing the rally, the Akwa Ibom state Governor and Peoples Democratic Party standard bearer for the governorship election in the State, His Excellency, Deacon Udom Emmanuel, expressed appreciation to the good people of the area. He appreciated the unprecedented crowd that turned out in solidarity with him and said, he was turbo charged to surpass his performance for Ikono in the last three and a half years when re-elected.
The Governor assured the people that if voted back to the Hilltop Mansion, the area would witness more development as his administration will focus mainly on improving the fortunes of the area by initiating developmental policies capable of creating jobs, establishing of public schools, constructing more roads, providing affordable healthcare system and free-interest loans to boast businesses via the ongoing Dakkada Philosophy.
While promising to complete already approved road projects in the area, Mr. Emmanuel reiterated his resolve to commit himself towards reactivating and linking up the local government to other neighboring Local Government Areas for economic viability.
Governor Emmanuel, while soliciting for votes, said his completion agenda will change the narrative by resuscitating and rebuilding dilapidated projects which were hitherto abandoned by past administrations.
“Let me start by thanking Ikono for accepting my continuity”. Ikono is a cradle of Ibibio Nation. And once a true Ibibio son visits Ikono, there must be showers of blessing. I stand here to tell you, that there is an endorsement from the Heavens. Once there is an endorsement from Heaven, there must be an element. Today, the rain we witness is an element of my endorsement.”
“Ikono people, our campaign today in Ikono was to come back and remind you that things that were forgotten and dilapidated in Ikono, have been reactivated, reenergized, remodeled, restructured, reconstructed and brought back to life”.
“Today, after Justice Udo Udoma, Ikono remains another LG that has produced a Justice of the Supreme Court, and that’s a big achievement. I want to reassure you, that we have started the process of transforming Ikono”. In terms of healthcare delivery, we have the most-digitalized General Hospital in the state located in Ikono”.
“Let’s ask the opposition what they have done for Ikono whenever they come to campaign. Once again, I assure you that the requests presented today will be attended to. What we started, we will equally complete.” His Excellency added.
He pledged that the youths would be given preference in terms of employment opportunities when most industries are fully operational and commended the people for supporting his industrialization drive.
The Dakkada Mastro thanked the good people of Ikono for sustainable peace recorded in the land known as cradle of Ibibio’s civilization, adding that nothing should divide the unity Akwa Ibom people have enjoyed from time immemorial.
Also speaking, the Director General of Divine Mandate Campaigns’ Organization, His Excellency, Otuekong Idongesit Nkanga admonished Ikono people to resist every opposition, which he noted is capable of jeopardizing the destiny of the area, saying that PDP is a religion in the State.
He said, “Permanent Voter cards are necessary indices that would determine who governs you”, it will amount to going back to years of servitude, if selfish individuals are allowed to buy your votes.”
Otuekong Nkanga advised the good people of Ikono to go out on 2nd Match to demonstrate capacity by returning the governor for the next four years in office.
Speaking Earlier, Ikono Council Chairman, Hon. Itoro Columba celebrated the governor’s giant strides in repositioning the state to take advantage of foreign donor schemes. He commended the Governor for the steady release of counterpart funds that have directly encouraged many life-touching World Bank projects under the aegis of WASH and RAMP, among others.
Akparawa Columba extoled the goodwill His Excellency brought to the Ntippe Ibibio electorates, saying that the area never had it this good during eight years of last administration.
According to him, “Your Excellency, when we voted you in 2015, we did that merely because Ikono has always been a PDP Local Government since 1999; little did we know, that we voted a man who was coming to wipe away our tears”.
“You came into office and without our prompting, you gave us the 4.6 KM Nung Ukim Road. You upgraded our General Hospital that had long became a habitat for rodents and a haven for criminals. Therefore, Ikono had long taken her stance to return all our votes to you come 2nd Match”, the council chairman enthused.
Another great highlight of the rally was the presentation of flags by State chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Obong Paul Ekpo to Federal House of Representatives hopeful for Ikono/Ini Federal Constituency, Obong Emmanuel Ukpong-Udo and his Ikono State Constituency counterpart, Hon. Asuquo Nana, on their successful emergence at the last PDP primaries as standard bearers.
In their separate remarks, a former Finance Commissioner in Akwa Ibom State, Sir Sunday U. Akpan, Member, House of Representatives for Ikono/Ini Federal Constituency, Engr Iboro F. Ekanem, PDP State Legal Adviser, Obong (Barr) Goddy Umoh, Federal House of Representatives PDP candidate for Ikono/Ini Federal Constituency, Obong Emmanuel Ukpong-Udo with his counterpart from Ikono State Constituency, Hon. Asuquo Nana, a Former Chairman of Ikono, ObongAnwan Lovinah Umo-Effah and Supervisor for Work, Comrade John Bassey took turns to roll out their support for governor’s re-election bid.
They described the governor as a true father, friend and messiah of transformation to ikono people amidst lean resources. They further commended the professional expertise he has brought to bear in the management of State finances which has given rise to over fifteen industries and counting.
Recounting on some noticeable projects carried out by His Excellency, the movers and shakers of Ikono Politics acknowledged capital projects, such as: Remodeling of Ikono General Hospital with State-of-the-art equipment, Appointment of Ikono sons and daughters into various positions, Upgrading of Akwa Ibom State School of Art and Science to College of Science and Technology.
Other giant strides of the Governor according to the political stakeholders include approval of eleven public schools for eleven wards in Ikono, Approval of Urua Naria/Nkwot/ Obio Ediene Roads, the Construction of the 4.6 KM Mbiafun Nkwongo/ Nung Ukim Road with Street light and side drains which was impassable for years, plus numerous inter-ministerial projects leading to the construction, renovation of class rooms in many schools across different wards in the community. They unanimously promised to deliver the state chief executive in the coming elections to do more for them.
Earlier, the Governor and his entourage had paid a courtesy visit on the Paramount Ruler of Ikono, His Royal Majesty, Edidem Nyong Obop in his palace at Ibiaku Ntok Okpo. The Royal father who gave his blessings, appealed to the governor for economic fortunes in Ikono Local Governemnt Area, if re-elected