Imoke Celebrates Ikom New Yam Festival


San Francisco, Sept 10, (THEWILL) - Governor Liyel Imoke of Cross River State has said the state is committed to agriculture and will continue to add value to those engaged in it.

Speaking during the New Yam festival of the people of Ikom Local Government Area at Akparabong, Imoke commended the indigenes for the celebration which is a reflection of their economic potential and culture, adding that there was need for them to celebrate after work "because there is a reward for hard work."

Imoke noted that the people were not just celebrating the new yam but the great sons and daughters of the area because of their achievements and dedication to serve their people and that he joined them in the celebration because of its capacity to contribute to the transformation of the area, promising that Yala-Akparabong Road would be completed during the dry season.

The Governor described Akparabong as a historical city known for its industry adding that government would provide infrastructure and support to make it grow.

Imoke, who was accompanied by Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba, had earlier addressed the traditional rulers of the area at the Ikom Local Government Council Hall. He said his visit to the area to celebrate the new yam festival with them was indicative of his commitment to ensure everyone feels the presence of government, saying that he was there to celebrate Ikom, its children and its elders.

He said Ikom as the Central headquarters would be given its due consideration with the provision of more social amenities.

Mr. Ogar Ndoma-Egodo, Chairman Ikom Local Government Council, said the Ikom New Yam Festival tagged "Ikom Hi-life 2010", included exhibitions, games, relationships, story telling and vocation, stating that they had cause to celebrate and if they had resources, they do so each season because in August – September they have new yam, February to March cocoa, and corn and cassava from May – June every year.

Activities earmarked for the celebration included New Yam Festival, conferment of chieftaincy titles and declaration while the highlights were the traditional blessing and presentation of new yam by Minen Oben Neji Etta, Clan Head of Akparabong, and presentation of buses to the six Local Government Chapters of PDP in the Central Senatorial District by Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba.

Earlier, the Senator representing the Central Senatorial District had taken Governor Liyel Imoke to inspect a church project, the construction of a new Saint James Catholic Church, Akparabong, which he is building for the people of the area.

According to Ndoma-Egba, the church project was part of a promise he made to God when he was 11 years old and that it stands as a gratitude to God for what he has done for him.

Addressing members of the church, Governor Imoke thanked Ndoma-Egba for the project which according to him is a landmark within the area, noting that it was an act of appreciation to the Glory of God for what He has done in the Senator’s life.

Imoke said the edifice will transform the area as one can not over-emphasis the role God plays in his life and commended the Senator and hoped the project would be completed within a year’s period while pledging to support it.

The church in its address commended Ndoma-Egba for the project and appealed for the roofing of the building while calling for the erection of residential building for the priest and the purchase of a generating plant.