By Umoh-Obong Kingsley |
Former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Arc. Obong Victor Attah, has commended Governor Udom Emmanuel‘s cleverness and unfettered commitment towards consolidation on developmental strides of previous governments.
Speaking at the occasion, Arc. Attah thanked the Governor for not aligning with other governments who stopped at nothing to destroy the projects and programmes of their predecessors, but deemed it necessary to carry on the dream he had for Akwa Ibom State.
The visibly elated former governor stated that “There was a time when successive governments destroyed everything the previous government had done but that is not the case with Udom Emmanuel.
“I was accused of running the government as a business but Udom has confirmed today that the only way to run a government is not only as a business but as a successful business.”
Obong Attah further stated that the airport was conceived to accommodate four aircrafts at the same time for maintenance, but the immediate past administration did not only stop work, but made effort to bring such aircrafts for maintenance.
“Today, we have a beginning of something that will bring economic growth and development.”
Governor Udom Emmanuel, in his speech, attributed his success over the aircraft to God who he said made it a reality, adding that those who never want good things for the state tried to frustrate the project.
He expressed satisfaction that part of his blueprints for Akwa Ibom people has materialized, saying “Today and this time should be a happy moment for every Akwa Ibomite. It is a day we should stand tall and very proud.
“When we made our blueprints public, we had said that there are three gateways – air, land and water in which we will launch the economic blueprint of Akwa Ibom with a short time
“On air, our runway has been upgraded which is not common even in African countries. The state owns and runs the Victor Attah International Airport.
“The launching of Ibom Air is an achievement not only in Nigeria but in Africa. No businessman or politician in the African continent has ever nurtured and brought to fruition the unveiling of a commercially viable airline business that has vision that will materialise in a very short time within a period of two years, except the state made after God on planet earth, Akwa Ibom.”
Governor Emmanuel assured Obong and the entire Akwa Ibom people that the maintenance, repair and operation (MRO) unit at the airport the former governor envisioned has gone far, as lot of fittings and equipment are coming into this airport, and Ibom Air fleet will soon arrive.
The state Governor also assured that the construction of the Ibom Deep Seaport project would soon begin and become a reality before the end of his administration in 2023 as the investors are already on ground.
He expressed gratitude to members of the State House of Assembly, National Assembly, stakeholders in the Aviation sector and all indigenes of the state for their cooperation, and used the occasion to sue for togetherness among indigenes of the state as a people bound by sheered destiny with passion of success, for a greater chance to achieve more.
The Senate President, Dr Bukola Sarak, described the event as historic and a demonstration of excellent leadership.
He congratulated Akwa Ibom for having Mr Udom Emmanuel on the saddle and the joy as a PDP member who knows what it takes to bequeath landmark legacies with his wealth of experience in the corporate world, and called on the people to cue behind him and all the PDP candidates in the forthcoming elections by voting Atiku Abubakar for president and Governor Udom Emmanuel.
Earlier in his remarks, the Chairman, Ibom Air, Otuekong Idongesit Nkanga, commended Governor Emmanuel for his drive to make an international transport hub, and attracting 15 industries as well as an increased traffic for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
He said in no distant time, Akwa Ibom will soon launch international flight services and the airport would generate more revenue to boost the state’s Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) to boost the states economy.
The Technical Consultant, Captain Mfon Udom, on his part, noted that the Aircrafts would be manned by the best professionals in the Aviation industry and that the Ibom Air is one of the vehicles to drive the states economy.
He said the fleet would have ten Aircrafts beginning with three and the rest would be added.