Akwa Ibom state is once again, on the verge of history on its march to elect a governor in the 2015 general election. The choice we make in course of this crucial exercise will have a tremendous impact on the political dynamics of Akwa Ibom State, our well being and our future as a people bound in common destiny.
On the strength of my personal conviction that I have the capacity to successfully manage the affairs of this state, it is my pleasure to inform you that I formerly disengaged from the Akwa Ibom State Executive Council as the Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice, on October 20, 2014, after an unprecedented privilege of serving in the cabinet since July, 2009, twice as the Attorney-General and also as the pioneer Commissioner for Transport.
In the evolving events leading to the election of a worthy successor to Chief Godswill Akpabio, CON, I have unavoidably and increasingly found myself in a consummate equitable advocacy that is much more important and larger than me or any one else, the direction of which must be respected by all in the overall interest of the state. As I stated in the words of William Shakespeare by Brutus at the valedictory state executive Council meeting in our honour, the resigning members of that council on October 20, 2014:
“There is a tide in the affairs of men.
Which taken at the flood, leads on to future;
Omitted, all the voyage of life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries
On such a full sea are we now aflot,
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or close our ventures.
It is in such a full sea and serving current that Akwa Ibom State has found itself in the current political dispensation, and this moment must not be lost on anyone.
The responsibility is on us all to remind ourselves why finishing right and strong the job, so commendably in progress under the atypical leadership of Chief Godswill Akpabio CON, remains important. I have said it before, and it is important and urgent that I repeat it today, that the massive infrastructural interventions and raising profile of the last few years should not be fatigued out by political expediency and naivety. The progress so far made is as important as the task ahead is onerous.
With over 25 years of political grooming and experience, I know the need to marry the diverse political classes, divides and circle of our dear state for the general goals.
I have been through it all, and the experience, as the best teacher, is ever instructive. I do not need to proudly speak of my modest family background and my upbringing as the regimented son of Mission teachers-a headmasters father and a classroom teacher mother or my records in politics and governance of Akwa Ibom; I prefer my actions testifying for my character.
I have decided to offer to serve as governor of Akwa Ibom state in 2015, starting from the imminent People’s Democratic Party ( PDP) primary elections of 2014. In seeking this office, I intend to run a pan-Akwa Ibom Governorship, constitutionally respecting its state character and cherished common heritage. I have a vision for better days ahead and that disrespects tribe or status and a clear understanding of how to fulfill the vision. My major mission on offer, as Governor of Akwa Ibom state, is to build a bridge of friendship and proportional development across our rural poor and the urban rich; to wield together, in one administration, our people and the entire state in pursuit of the core values of the agitation of our founding fathers for a state.
My focus in a four year mandate, is to initiate a pragmatic and hard-headed agenda directed at taking advantage of the height to which Akwa Ibom state, has been raised, both in infrastructural development and image rating, to arrest the surging unemployment rate and systematically support social stability of the state.
I do not intend to entertain the public with a photo-shopped, picture-perfect mission or high sounding theoretical principles and text book solution. I undertake what I consider expedient and achievable as a home bred who feels it, and whose rural relative feel it.
The core development policy of our administration will be anchored on.
1 Rural urbanization policy on the establishment of 10 integrated rural cities under the home-school-profession scheme.
2.Integrated technology, financial and management-a programme that would work in partnership with the respective local economic peculiarities to positively affect several lives in expected gainful employment.
3. Reform of technical education system by rehabilitating technical education curriculum and providing training programme and support with emphasis on industry, agriculture, entrepreneurship and administrative/ services.
4 A living reality of Agro-industrial projects in unbroken chain and integrated process of coordinated farming, logistics management, production expertise/knowledge transfer, R & D, processing sales and marketing to substantially meet local food demand and promote foreign trade and guaranteed increase income.
Our focus through our common sense anchor policy of rural urbanization will be the creation of a new pool of entrepreneurial work force for today’s employment market, dispersal of development, creation of new cities out the rural areas and substantial reduction of poverty rate.
In addition, through partnership and shared investment with private sector, my administration will offer complimentary unparalleled commercial and employment opportunities in Akwa Ibom Sate by the completion of the Ibaka Deep sea Port and Ibom Airport project, in well-laid out plans to consciously attract private and collaborative investment to the state.
We therefore implore you to join us in the realization of this great vision and enormous task we have voluntarily elected to undertake as together we can move the state to greater heights.
In conclusion, pray that God, in whose hands power resides, and in Him who gives it unto whom He pleases, shall guide us aright in the making of a choice premised on wisdom, justice and good conscience.
God Bless Akwa Ibom State!
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Text of a press briefing by Barrister Ekpenyong Ntekim during an interactive session with journalists at the Ekpenyong Ntekim Campaign office in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State on the 22nd of October 2015