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BREAKING: Essien Udim Stakeholders Blast PDP Elders Over AKHA Crisis, Nse Ntuen

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The Political stakeholders of Essien Udim Local Government have lambasted the actions and utterances of PDP Elders over the crisis rocking the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly and purported rejection of the new Speaker, Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen.

Rising from an emergency meeting convened at the instance of the Essien Udim Caucus Chairman, Arc. Ubokutom Nyah, the stakeholders described the communique issued by PDP Elders as mischievous, self-seeking and a recipe for discord in a bid to further mundane political interest.

Expressing their support to the emergence of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen as the speaker of the Assembly, the leaders affirmed that the development has strengthened the legislature and wondered why the so-called elders did not condemn the recent invasion of the house by the Governor with the aid of hoodlums.

Read Full Communique:

A COMMUNIQUE ISSUED ON SATURDAY 1ST DECEMBER, 2018 AT THE END OF AN EMERGENCY MEETING OF CAUCUS AND STAKEHOLDERS OF ESSIEN UDIM LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA ON THE CRISIS AT THE AKWA IBOM STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY
 
Our attention has been drawn to an advertorial credited to certain political merchants under the aegis of Elders and Stakeholders of PDP in Essien Udim Local Government Area. We are compelled to respond and denounce in all ramifications, deliberations and pronouncements relating to the purported rejection of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen, which we consider inimical to the unity, overall stability and integrity of Essien Udim Local Government Area. We therefore rise to declare that:
 
“We condemn in strong terms, the attempt by the so-called Elders and Stakeholders of PDP in Essien Udim to plant the seed of discord in a bid to promote their parochial, self-seeking and mundane political interests against the overall concern of  Essien Udim and Akwa Ibom people.”
 
“The attempt to either politicize the emergence of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen as the Honourable Speaker or meddle into the affairs of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly without condemning the illegal invasion of the house by Governor Udom Emmanuel with the aid of miscreants and hoodlums who were armed with dangerous weapons, is nothing but an act of scapegoatism.”
 
“With the suspension of 11 members, leaving the house with 15 members, the emergence of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen as the Honourable Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly is no doubt, in compliance with the standing rules of the house and the law.”

“Having carefully followed the half-truths, mischief churned out about the purported rejection of the speaker by some elements whose primitive penchant remains the handling of lies and distortions to fit their narrow political narrative, we wish to state unequivocally that such petty assertions in question do not represent the position of Essien Udim stakeholders and remains therefore, a devilish concoction of the sponsors.”

“As leaders and stakeholders rooted in democracy, we respect the wish of any Essien Udim son to their democratic aspirations but shall never be a party to electoral monkey tricks, let alone the rejection of our son and experienced lawmaker like Rt. Hon. Nse Effiong Ntuen, whose emergence as speaker has strengthened and repositioned the place of Akwa Ibom State legislature, bringing to an end, the era of rubber-stamping, impunity and ignominy that characterized the reign of Rt.Hon. Onofiok Luke.”
 
“For the interest of the public who may have been misled, here are the facts: that the former speaker was contemptuous by virtue of the pending court cases when he declared the seats of the lawmakers vacant. Reliable information from the house reveals that the former speaker surreptitiously entered the hallowed chambers of the house from the backdoor, defiling the ethos of the legislature. More so, the mace – the symbol of legislative authority was not used at the purported sitting, a quorum was not formed, and the house since 1999, had never sat for legislative business on Mondays. Therefore, the actions of the former speaker and his cohorts was a formal demonstration of illegality, rascality and ineptitude which has become the landmark of the current administration and befits his impeachment.”
 
“We have also noticed serial efforts by the former speaker and the Governor to disparage and malign the hard-earned personality of our dear son, Distinguished Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio as if he is the apparition hunting their sinking political career and impending defeat at the forthcoming elections. We are fully aware that the desperations are just emerging and as events unfold, these characters will clearly adopt further mischief to advance this nefarious project. It is on this basis that we condemn this very unpatriotic, selfishly patronizing and self-serving posture of the declarants and warn them to desist henceforth. No amount of white wash or media propaganda of a few antagonists can change the resolve of the masses from sending these characters where they belong; the dungeon of history.”
 
“We are particularly embarrassed that instead of working with all stakeholders to sustain the legacies of Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio which heralded massive infrastructural transformation across the state, the acclaimed elders are chanting the endorsement of an administration they have described as ‘promoting security of lives and poverty’. This is not a discovery but a confirmation that is utterly insulting to the people of Essien Udim and Akwa Ibom State at large.”
 
“What can our so-called elders say about the killings of over 500 people in Ukanafun and Etim Ekpo Local Government Areas? What about the permanent curfew that has crippled the mercantile and social life of Ikot Ekpene? What can they say about the abandoned FourPoints by Sheraton located at the heartbeat of Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District? What about the Uyo-Ikot Ekpene Road? What about the abandoned Tropicanna and Ibom Mall? What about the grandeur of incompetence, noisemaking and all motion without movement? Should these not be the real concern of elders? Shamefully, the state of affairs of a state renowned for receiving the highest monthly federal allocation is not as encouraging as the talents and potentials of the people this state merit – a life of stateliness, conceit and real democracy is still a dream for the overwhelming Akwa Ibom people.”

“We are deeply concerned about the infrastructural decline particularly in Essien Udim and Akwa Ibom State in general, since the inception of Governor Udom Emmanuel led-administration coupled with inactions, gross display of overzealousness by certain political actors who are bereft of the workings of democracy.”

“Matters bothering on the deployment or redeployment of the Commissioner of Police to a state is an exclusive preserve of the Nigeria Police Force, and they should be allowed to exercise their constitutional responsibility without needless interferences from any quarters including the elders and political parties. Therefore, the ongoing desperate calls from politicians for the redeployment of the present State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Musa Kimo is tactless and totally unacceptable.”
 
“We wish to insist that natural justice, equity, fair play and democratic norms must take their natural course as we step closer to the general elections. We equally charge Governor Udom Emmanuel to call himself and his acolytes to deescalate the emerging preference for impunity and other acts that is undermining the peace and stability of our dear state.”
 
“We believe that the 2019 contest would be won on the basis of superior program of action; upon parade of superior will, competence, knowledge, exposure and experience; in good conscience driven by Godly principles and upon the endorsement and support of the people. We wish to conclude that our collective verdict and response to these antics will be availed through our votes on February 16thand March, 2nd, 2019 respectively.”

Stakeholders present at the meeting include: Elder Friday Udo, Former Secretary to Akwa Ibom State Government, Sir Etekamba Umoren, Atuekong (Dr) Chris Akpan, Obong Godwin Afangideh, Sir (Barr) Ibanga Akpabio, Hon. (Barr) Godwin Akang, Rt. Hon. (Barr) Paulinus Idio, Elder Ekpenyong Ekrikpo, Hon. Joseph Tombere, Hon. Ndifreke Idung, Mr. Patrick Usen, Mr. Andrew Anthony Udoh, Hon. (Leader) Oscar Udom, Obong Anthony Umoren Idung, Hon. Raphael Udoma, Mr. Paul Paul Ibara, Abom Ephraim Okon, Hon. Emmanuel Inyangetor, Hon. Emmanuel Isidore Udoh, Otuekong Hon. Uduak Udo, Mr. Godwin Etokakpan, Mr. Ime Unanam and Elder Thomas B. Inyang.

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Construction of Local Content Board Headquarters, a Token of Redemption for Niger Delta Region – Ekon

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Chairman House Committee on Local Content and Member Representing Abak/Etim Ekpo/Ika Federal Constituency, Rt. Hon. Emmanuel Ekon, has described the ongoing construction of a 17 floor head office building of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) in Bayelsa State, as a token of redemption for the Niger Delta region.

Speaking alongside a cross section of the Committee Members at a Transformation Leadership and Management Workshop organized by the Management of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) in Yenogoa, Bayelsa State, the lawmaker stated that he was “pleased that a token of redemption is risen in the Niger Delta region with the presence of the new headquarters building of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board”.

The landmark edifice located at the Bayelsa State Capital, Yenagoa, handled by Megastar Tech and Construction Company is one of several flagship projects of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) and part of his committee’s repositioning of the local content board as a hub for industrial revolution and job creation.

While on a tour of the construction site, the lawmaker expressing satisfaction with the level of work done within the stipulated time frame by the contractor and commended the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) for making sure the project meets specification. He stated that with a renewed vision, the board is energized to deliver on its constitutional mandate to the Niger Delta and Nigeria at large.

Ekon further added that upon completion, the local content board will have a functional administrative headquarters and also bring the board closer to the Niger Delta region which is the mainstay of oil and gas explorations in Nigeria. He said the Local Content Board has come off age and urged other federal agencies to emulate the board by relying on indigenous companies to executr projects of this magnitude.

The Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote, who took the lawmakers round the project site, reiterated the lawmaker’s position that the decision to embark on the building a 17-storey head office building was to create an enabling environment for Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) to concretise their administrative base in the Niger Delta region.

It was gathered that the project which is the first of its kind in the Niger Delta is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

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Ekere to build new mechanic village in Uyo

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The Governorship Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Obong Nsima Ekere, has promised to establish a new mechanic village in Uyo, the state capital, if elected Governor on Saturday.

Speaking during a visit to the mechanic village located at Afaha Offot in Uyo on Thursday, Obong Ekere said the proposed mechanic village will be patterned after what is obtained in advanced countries of the world.

He decried the deplorable state of the present village, established more than 30 years ago, and promised to construct an access road to the village immediately after his inauguration on May 29, 2019.

The APC standard bearer criticised Governor Udom Emmanuel for failing to fulfill the promise he made, four years ago, to reconstruct the village and for coming recently to again deceive the occupants of the village after failing to ameliorate their suffering for nearly four years.

“Akwa Ibom State does not need a lying Governor. That is why we are embracing change. Change has come to Akwa Ibom State. Akwa Ibom State is getting to the next level,” he said.

Obong Ekere charged the technicians in the Mechanic Village to protect and follow their votes to the collation centres.

Senator John Udoedehe, a former Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, who is an indigene of Afaha Offot, wondered why Governor Udom Emmanuel came to campaign in the Mechanic Village after failing to fulfill his promise to develop the village made four years ago.

“Any government that looks down on mechanics, that government is a fool because you are the employers of labour. Nsima Ekere’s government will retrain and equip you. I want you to be agents for Nsima Ekere because Nsima Ekere is your future. Politics is a game of development. If Udom had performed, we would have nothing to campaign with,” he said.

Senator Udoedehe commended Obong Ekere for awarding a contract for the expansion of the internal roads in Afaha Offot and condemned Governor Emmanuel for refusing to equip the Primary Health Centre which he attracted to the village.

He said that he had also attracted an electrification project from the Ministry of Niger Delta to Afaha Offot.

Atuekong Don Etiebet, the Chairman of the Akwa Ibom State APC Caucus, described Obong Ekere as a quality person who will turn the mechanic village to a quality place.

He predicted total victory for the APC in the Governorship and House of Assembly elections.

Comrade Ufot Eno, the Secretary of the Nigeria Automobile Technicians Association (NATA), Mechanic Village, Uyo, Branch, who represented the Chairman, said Obong Ekere would be elected Governor of Akwa Ibom State, come rain come shine, disclosing that President Muhammadu Buhari won in the Mechanic Village polling unit during the February 26, 2019 election.

Mrs. Iniobong Ekanem, the Women Coordinator of NATA, Mechanic Village Branch, predicted victory for Obong Ekere and appealed to him to build what she called “a digital mechanic village” when he becomes Governor.

Eteidung David Etuk, the Village Head of Afaha Offot, who was present during the visit, thanked Obong Ekere for constructing roads in the village during his tenure as the Managing Director of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and expressed the belief that the APC standard bearer will transform the Mechanic Village if elected Governor.

He assured Obong Ekere of the votes of Mechanic Village and the larger Afaha Offot Village, adding that they had a stake in Obong Ekere’s incoming government through Senator Udoedehe, an insider.

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Girls are no longer victims but survivors – Eno-Obong Nkereuwem

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An emerging social crusader and girl rights advocate, Ms. Eno-Obong Nkereuwem has said that girls are no longer victims but survivors who remain resilient in the face of daunting challenges.

Narrating a story of her recent work with Smartmothers Foundation – an Akwa Ibom based NGO that aims to educate 3,000 students on sexual education and reduce the menace of teenage pregnancy across high schools, she wrote on her timelime:

“Barely less than a week after joining Smartmothers Foundation founded by Sifon Udo, I was handed my first challenge of coordinating an outreach. I was initially jittery for two reasons. Firstly, I had never coordinated an outreach of this sort, and secondly, the timing for me was quite ‘short’.”

“Buoyed by my passion, I knew this was a project that must happen. Sadly, the narrative around the girl-child has been demeaning and sometimes, hurting. And maybe I’m convinced it’s time to challenge this norm and recognise the place of the girl-child. I have been pondering well on this.”

“It touches my humanity that young schoolgirls are subjected to various degrees of abuse for things they cannot control while the society continues to look away. She reaches puberty and because she cannot afford pad, she becomes vulnerable to men who entice them with ‘money’ and most times lure them to bed resulting in teenage pregnancy. It’s a simple but dehumanizing cycle!”

“We live in a society that distributes free condoms instead of teaching young people to appreciate their sexuality and stay away from early sex. But can’t the society donate free pads to teenage girls? Can’t the society initiate stronger policies that protects the girl-child and reduce the menace of teenage pregnancy across high schools in Akwa Ibom State? The questions are endless!”

“But in of all these, young girls must develop their capacities and realise that we’re no longer victims but survivors who remain resilient in the face of daunting challenges.”

“Thank you Mr Gideon Ekanem
Thank you Smartmomsfoundation for believing in me to deliver.”

“SESEP was a success and we have GOD to thank for that.”

She called on well-meaning Nigerians to join the movement and donate pads to support the cause.

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NGO Targets 3,000 Students on Sex Education, Teenage Pregnancy in Akwa Ibom

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Smartmothers Foundation, an NGO based in Akwa Ibom State, on Tuesday said it had concluded plans to educate 3,000 students on sexual education and reduce the menace of teenage pregnancy across high schools in Akwa Ibom State.

The NGO disclosed this in a flyer exclusively obtained by Akwa Ibom INFO on its Sex Education Sensitization Programme organised for teenage students of Community Comprehensive Secondary School, Four Towns Uyo, tagged: “Sex Education is the Right of Every Teenager”.

The Program Director, Ms Eno-Obong Nkereuwem said that the sensitization programme is aimed at interfacing with young school children to reduce teenage pregnancy and also enlighten them on the basics of sex education.

Meanwhile, Akwa Ibom INFO learnt that the the founder of the NGO, Sifon Udo is targeting at empowering 3,000 teenage students in select schools across three Akwa Ibom senatorial zones.

According to her, pre-marital pregnancy in Nigeria is the highest in sub-Sahara Africa and is mostly prevalent amongst teenage girls in high school.

“The event slated for tomorrow, 28th February, 2019, will educate over 1000 teenagers and share pads to 200 vulnerable female students who cannot afford it and as a result resort to sex in order to get one”.

“Most young girls resort to sleeping with their peers or older men to give them money to buy pad. We are sharing the pads to them and giving them other options of getting pads instead of sleeping around.

“We are also educating young girls, ladies in particular and the public, about menstrual hygiene as well as breaking the stigma, clarifying myths and misconceptions around menstruation.

“There will also be pep talks on girl child empowerment, self esteem and confidence as a tool for nation building and donation of free sanitary pads and other hygiene products.

“Providing sanitary pads to young girls in schools will go a long way in supporting and dissuading them from keeping unhealthy relationships with the opposite sex. There’s reducing the rate of teenage pregnancy.” Eno-obong said.

Sifon stressed the urgent need for government at all levels to incorporate sex education into the school curriculum, so as to extend this sustainable value to teenagers in other schools in Nigeria.

The foundation calls on individuals and organizations to donate sanitary pads to support vulnerable teen girls in schools.

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