By The Evangelist News Edition, Monday June 26, 2023. Admin.
Akwa Ibom State Governor, Pastor Umo Eno, has warned Local Government Chairmanship and Councilorship aspirants for the next local government elections to excercise restraint in their bid to avoid frivolous spending, emphasising that the whistle for the race is yet to be blown.
He has also stated that the state is busy stabilizing with the new administration in place to ensure its smooth take off.
Governor Eno was addressing the Local Government Chairmen, Sunday, at a reception after the dedication of Abasiakara and Abasiofon, twin children of Ibiono Ibom Local Government Council Chairman, Hon. Ekopimo Polycarp, at the Eseme Essien Events Centre, Osongama Estate, Uyo.
Governor Eno noted that he was aware of activities of some Chairmanship and Councilorship aspirants and Stakeholders in some Local Government Areas who have started spending their hard earned money on consultations for the positions even when the state electoral umpire is yet to clarify on such issues and warned such power seeking persons to put their intentions on hold until an order is given to such political venture.
He also pointed out that issues bothering on established zoning arrangement in the local government areas have been brought before him for clarification and insisted that the laid down zoning arrangement will be followed to the latter as no form of pressure will cause him to go against the zoning arrangement.
He therefore warned the political jobbers not to expect any form of compensation, insisting that the state or the party will not compensate any individual or group engaging in frivolities in the name of consultations for now.
He explained that the state is busy setting up modalities for a smooth take off of the new administration for prompt delivery of democratic dividends to the people.
“Let me also inform you that some people have started consultations for Chairmanship and Councilorship positions, please don’t spend your money. I will not compensate anybody or Association for engaging in consultation for such positions in the local government areas.
“Please I have not sent you to waste your money on consultations. Wait untill we blow the whistle for Local Government elections. We are trying to ensure that Government takes shape and we are doing the best we can .
“Please note, if zoning does not favour you, don’t even worry yourself because no amount of pressure can make me go against the party zoning arrangements.”
Governor Eno who also harped on the need for maintenance of peace in the Area Councils, called on the Local Government Chairmen to live up to their vested responsibilities.
He observed that the mapping law has generated a lot of skirmishes in some places and used the occasion to advise the people to excercise restraint as the mapping case is pending in the court of competent jurisdiction and would soon be determined.
He warned that local government areas where security is found to have been compromised will face the wrath of the law, urging the Council Chairmen to be watchful by putting modalities in place to forestall such breaches and announced his intention to meet with the Council Chairmen across the state.
“It is also a privilege to meet all the Local Government Chairmen here. We are planning to have a meeting with you. Soon, you will hear from me. We need to talk. We need to discuss, actually about keeping your Local Governments safe and secured.
“You are the Chief Security Officers of your Local Government Areas and this is the time to showcase that leadership demand on you. We need to work together and extra hard to ensure that we stay in peace and let me use this occasion to plead with all the Chairmen, please hold down your Local Government Areas. We don’t want to have issues anywhere.
“There has been so much tension about mapping or remapping. I have said on many occasions, I know that some Local Government have gone to court. Naturally, when a case is in court you rest and maintain peace until it is determined.
“Nobody is coming to take your land or anything. We will wait for all the fire works to be done in the court. So, there is no need whatsoever for anyone to encourage crisis. We have security reports that some Local Government Chairmen are encouraging and trying to hide behind and sponsor agitations. Once that happens we will invoke the full weight of the law on the culprits.
“Let Local Government Chairmen hear me and hear me clearly, I will not surrender my mandate as a governor of this state to anyone. And we will like to work in peace, we would like to show that we are peaceful people and at the same time, we will react when we have to do so. This is not a threat. As a Chairman of the Local Government, we will hold you responsible for any breakdown of law and order in your domain.
“Let peace reign! Talk to your people and let them understand that nothing will happen untill this matter is resolved in the court”, Eno assured.
The State Chief Executive also told the Council Chairmen that the cardinal objective of his A.R.I.S.E. Agenda driven administration is rural development, adding that for the agenda to be realized there must be peace and unity in the rural communities.
Governor Eno was emphatic on the delivery of democratic dividends to the rural communities, a decision he said has binded him with his Deputy and the speaker.
“I have come today to show that we can live beyond our barriers and biases just like the state anthem has said. We can live above ethnicity.
“A time comes when the people come together and seek peace and growth of their land, whether it is Ibiono Ibom , Nsit Ibom or Nsit Ubium, we are all in one state so coming together like this avails us the opportunity to come together, rejoice together, talk to each other about things that will bring development to our state.
“We have made up our minds, myself, my Deputy and the Speaker to work very closely together with each other, and to ensure that we deliver dividends of democracy to our people. It doesn’t matter where the people stand.What we are interested in is our people receiving dividends of democracy especially in the rural areas”.
The Governor thanked God for the gift of the children to Mr and Mrs Polycarp, describing the children as divine gift from God and prayed for God’s blessings on the parents to enable them train the kids to be what God has predestined for them .
“I would like to congratulate the Chairman of Ibiono I on Local Government Council. We pray that God will continue to give you his face and strength so that these lovely kids will continue to have the best and grow up to who God has pre-destined them.
“Honestly, children, the bible says are gift from God and we need to celebrate when God bless us with children. We know that twin runs in the family so we thank God and celebrate with you for being blessed with the twins”, he stated.
In his goodwill message, the Chairman, Association of Local Government of Nigeria, ALGON, who is also the the Executive Chairman of Esit Eket, Rt. Hon. Iniobong Robson expressed appreciation to God for His graciousness to the family of their member, and for seeing them through the successful delivery of the children, describing child dedication as a sacred means of committing the destiny of every child to God.
He thanked the Governor for gracing the occasion and spoke of his presence as illuminating, exciting and pleasurable.
In the Governor’s entourage were Deputy Governor, Dr. Akon Eyakenyi, Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Udeme Otong, Secretary to the State Government, Prince Enobong Uwah, Members of the State House of Assembly and some former Commissioner.