By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo
My administration will not venture into any legacy project, just to make a name at the detriment of over 7.9 million Akwa Ibom populace, Akwa Ibom State Governor, Pastor Umo Eno has declared.
Pastor Eno in a statewide broadcast marking the 36th Anniversary of the creation of Akwa Ibom State, on Saturday, said his administration’s major focus is on rural development in line with the United Nation’s SDG5 on improved standard of living.
He said that the vision is to build on the foundation already laid by past leaders by building solid infrastructure, which require that succeeding administrations to build on.
His words, “Our key focus is on rural development which aligns with the United Nation’s SDG 5 on improved standard of living. This is so, because our past leaders, followed the approach that mature democracies have adopted, which is to provide enduring and solid infrastructure especially road network and other hard infrastructure so the succeeding administrations can deploy resources to develop and improve the standard of living of the people in the hinterlands.
“This is exactly what we are determined to do. The key elements of the ARISE Agenda is to open up our rural areas, provide access roads, ignite agricultural revolution and reduce the push and desire for people to migrate form rural to urban areas.
“Once we improve the quality of life of our rural dwellers, embark upon the One Local Government One Project (OLOP,) create neighborhood watchers to provide both employment to our youths in Local Government Areas and to maintain the peace and security we have been enjoying, improve primary healthcare service delivery, establish model primary schools, and link the over 2, 272 gazetted villages with electricity, we would be right on track with our rural development agenda.”
The governor who assured that the vision would bear good fruits, touch lives, engender sustainable peace and create employment among others in the state, announced the setting up of an Agency made of professionals to drive the pathway.
“To achieve the vision, we have established the State Rural Access Road Agency (RARA) an off-shoot of the Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Projects (RAAMP) – a World Bank Development Project led by competent professionals.”, He stated.
To ignite the agricultural revolution in line with his administration’s blueprint – ARISE Agenda, Governor Eno said that the state government has acquired over 50 hectares of land in each of the 31 Local Government Areas, to ensure food security and to get the people to be involved in agro-allied enterprises.
As a practical demonstration of the resolve, he said, was the recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the world renowned Songhai Farms to start a model farm in in Akwa Ibom, besides sending dozens of people for training so they could form the nucleus of the skilled workers to drive this exercise.
The Governor acknowledged that Akwa Ibom State in 36 years after creation has been a story of God’s awesome grace, of stupendous lifting up even when there was a casting down, adding that the once a dusty rural backwater, where the roads were narrow and at most looked like bush tracks on creation, now enjoys the enviable position of being the sub national with possibly the best road network in the nation.
Owing gratitude to God for the uncountable favour and benevolence, former military president Ibrahim Babangida whom God used to create the state, thus rested the struggle of the forebears for a State, the Governor equally paid glowing tributes to past governors of the state who laid the foundation for the growth and development currently experiencing as an entity in the country.
He wished the people of the state a happy anniversary celebration.