The Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr Nsima Ekere, has advised the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel, to stop blaming the interventionist agency for his poor performance in governance.
Speaking during the solidarity rally in honour of President Muhammadu Buhari and Nsima Ekere, at the Uyo Township Stadium, Ekere re-stated his position that NDDC was designed to collaborate with states and not compete.
He declared: “NDDC is not a state government. Our mandates are different. Our responsibilities are also different. So, no state should hide under the NDDC to justify its non-performance.”
Ekere said that it would serve the Akwa Ibom State Government better to present its scorecard and let the electorate decide rather than deliberately miss-informing the people about the projects and programmes of the NDDC. He added: “Election for an incumbent is a referendum on performance. Udom Emmanuel should show the people what he has achieved in three and half years.”
The NDDC boss said Akwa Ibom people could not afford to play opposition politics, noting that as a leading oil producing state it deserved better returns. He, therefore, urged the people to support President Buhari and vote for the All Progressives Congress, APC, to launch Akwa Ibom into the mainstream politics of Nigeria.
He stated: “Akwa Ibom people have made up their mind that they want to be part of APC government at the centre. That is why they have trooped out in thousands to identify with President Buhari and to say that they will vote APC all the way.
“Today, Akwa Ibom North East Senatorial District has spoken that come 2019, APC in Akwa Ibom is one,” Ekere said.
He lamented that the Ibaka Deep Sea Port, which he said had enormous economic potentials, was neglected by the Udom Emmanuel administration. “We want to build and complete the Deep Sea Port when we take over in 2019,” Ekere assured.
In his opening speech, the chairman of the occasion and the Managing Director of the Oil and Gas Free Zones Authority, OGFZA, Mr Umana Okon Umana, described the NDDC Managing Director as a great son and a good ambassador of Akwa Ibom State.
He said: “We are pleased with Nsima Ekere, who has delighted the state with his impressive performance at the NDDC.
“We look forward to an APC government in the state led by Ekere to save us from existential threat posed by uncommon incompetence and complete lack of imagination in the administration of the affairs of the state.”
Umana said that the track records of President Buhari and Ekere have earned them the trust of the people of Akwa Ibom.
In his own remarks, the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari, on National Assembly (Senate) Matters, Senator Ita Enang said that Akwa Ibom was the greatest among the states in the South-South region.
Senator Enang also said that the APC would use Akwa Ibom to launch the party fully into the South-South region.
“Akwa Ibom State shall be the launching ground from where APC shall launch to conquer Bayelsa, Delta, Rivers, Cross River and other South-South states,” Enang said.
He called on all Akwa Ibom people to support Buhari in the forthcoming 2019 general elections, stressing that the president would do more for the state in his second term.