The achievements of Governor Udom Emmanuel in Akwa Ibom State, nearly seven years after he assumed office, took the center stage as his Presidential ambition received the nod of members of the PDP Caucus in the Senate and House of Representatives respectively.
In separate consultations late Tuesday evening in Abuja, Governor Emmanuel told the Federal lawmakers that his decision to throw his hat into the ring came after ordinary Nigerians, responding to the call by a media organisation, the Brekete Family Human Rights Radio and TV, had urged him to run during his January 7, 2022 appearance on their programme.
He said several Nigerians who listened to that media interview contributed money and helped purchase the Presidential Nomination Forms, urging him to run.
Governor Emmanuel told the lawmakers that he decided to run, because he believes in his capacity to make Nigeria safe, peaceful, attract investments and become economically vibrant.
At the meeting with the PDP Senate Caucus at the residence of the Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, Governor Emmanuel was appreciated for the pace of development he has brought to Akwa Ibom through industrialization and Infrastructural development.
The Governor told the upper House legislators that his vision on assumption of office, had been to vigorously tackle the three gateways to industrialization; land, sea and air, noting that despite the nation’s economic challenges, and lack of control on policies, he was able to make a mark in aviation development, and infrastructural expansion as well as other critical sectors of development.
Senator Abaribe and other Distinguished Senators nodded in agreement , as Governor Emmanuel narrated how he has built several roads, including a road and two bridges through Ikpe Ikot Nkon in Ini local government area and another road and bridges in Obot Akara to opened up some communities like Arochukwu and Ekwerazu in Abia State to improved economic and social activities, which Senator Abaribe said he has used several times.
Also narrating his achievements in establishing the best airline in the country, as well as attracting the array of industries, Governor Emmanuel said, “If I could do these when I am only managing a sub-national where I do not have control on several policies, then I believe we can do better given the national platform as President.”
“Those who can rescue Nigeria are the professionals in politics. Those who understand the language of the economy, those who understand the language of money and can manage resources, as well as those who have experience in the private and public sector.”
He said Nigeria would be in for better times if selfless people with capacity are given the opportunity to rule, adding that as national lawmakers, he believes the senators understand why the dignity of a nation with over 200million people should be entrusted into the hands of those who understand economic issues.
Earlier, Senator Chris Ekpenyong on behalf of Senators from Akwa Ibom, who were all present, eulogized Governor Emmanuel for changing the fortunes of Akwa Ibomites.
“Before 2015, we in Akwa Ibom could not sleep with our two eyes closed. But Governor Emmanuel restored peace, provided job opportunities and engaged youths in meaningful activities thereby reducing criminal activities and restiveness.
Ekpenyong narrated that on different occasions, the Governor had hosted the Vice President and the Senate President to commission Industries, health care facilities and roads infrastructure, thereby making other political parties are attest to his achievements.
A former deputy Governor of Ekiti State, Senator Abiodun Olujimi maintained that Governor Emmanuel has been one of the strong pillars behind the success of the PDP.
She maintained that the Governor has related well with the National Assembly members and could be a perfect bridge builder to unite the country.
“You believe in this country, and you believe in our party as a binding force and vehicle, and we in the senate will be of immense support with whatever we can do to make our country grow.”
At the home of Honourable Ndudi Elumelu, the Minority Leader of he House of Representatives, the lawmakers while eulogizing Governor Emmanuel, took turns to lobby for the extension of Ibom Air services to their respective states.
“I learnt the airline recently started flying to Yenogoa, Bayelsa State, there is no reason it should not be in Asaba(Delta State)”, Elumelu said, before being interjected by other lawmakers who advocated for their respective States in unison.
“I have not seen an airline so disciplined and efficient in Nigeria. On two occasions, I have missed my flight, because of their strict adherence to time. On the last occasion, I saw the door of the aircraft being shut and the plane taxied off before I could make it.”
“It takes a man that is focused to build up such a system. Today if you go online to buy Ibom Air Ticket, you would hardly find because it always fully booked. You have done very well to our people, to Nigerians.
“You have always had high regards for the National Assembly, and I believe they are all happy with you”, Hon. Elumelu added.
Governor Emmanuel was asked to take a bow, while the lawmakers applauded him.
The Governor was accompanied by several Akwa Ibom PDP stakeholders who had earlier in the day accompanied the Preferred Candidate for the State’s Governorship race, Pastor Umo Eno to submit his nomination forms at the PDP National Secretariat.
Among members of the delegation were Pastor Umo Eno, the preferred Candidate of the PDP on the forthcoming Governorship elections,Barr Emmanuel Enoidem, the International Chairman of the MPM, Campaign DG, Chief Assam Assam( SAN), deputy Director General of Campaigns, Dr. Godwin Ntukudeh, MPM Secretary, Prince Enobong Uwah, Senator Effiong Bob, Obong Paul Ekpo, the Etinan Federal Constituency aspirant, Commissioners Frank Archibong, Eno Ibanga and Ini Ememobong, and several other stakeholders, like Hon Okpolupm Etteh, Engr. Uwem Okoko and Maj Gen Isang.
The national assembly members from the State included Senator Bassey Albert, Senator Akon Eyakenyi, Hon. Aniekan Umanah, Hon Francis Uduyok, Hon. Emmanuel Ukpong Udo, Hon. Unyime Idem and Hon Nsikak Ekong among others