Akwa Ibom Needs CHANGE: Uncommon Power And Security.
The issue of generating and distributing electric POWER in AKWA IBOM is really a question of WILLPOWER .The question is, can GOV.AKPABIO challenge the status quo and bring constant power supply to AKWA IBOM people irrespective of whose ox is gored? TINUBU challenged the Federal government and created additional Local Development Councils in Lagos, because this Visionary Leader was desperate to bring development to his people.
When there was acute scarcity of vehicle number plates in Lagos a few years ago, TINUBU challenged the status quo ,which made the Federal Road Safety commission (FRSC) sole producers of VEHICLE number plates,and started producing for LAGOS.Of course ,the Federal government reportedly went to court and nothing has so far come out of it.
When the BAR BEACH was eroded a few years back and the Federal government was allegedly reluctant to bail out.TINUBU quickly got INVESTORS in a BUILD, OPERATE AND TRANSFER (BOT) deal that brought relief to Lagos residents.
A great visionary leader is a change agent who is always bold enough to challenge the status quo.ATTAH is such a charismatic Leader, who fought for Resource Control (the huge allocation at AKPABIO'S disposal today) and lost his presidential ambition because some “eggheads” felt he was too independent. I laugh when i read comments by sponsored internet hirelings who have tried hard to rubbish the distinguish personality of this great AFRICAN.
If an individual can buy a generator plant and supply electricity to whoever he or she likes, I cannot envisage why AKWA IBOM cannot do same and supply to an earmarked industrial area. I sincerely don't care if this industrial Area/city is located in Ikot Ekpene,Uyo or Oron .AKWA IBOM can afford power transmission lines which should be connected from the IBOM POWER PLANT to the earmarked industrial Area/city.This investment is more paramount than building TROPICANA for 50 billion naira. Believe me,if there is constant electricity supply in AKWA IBOM ,investors will flock the State en mass, as they are moving to GHANA right now. If we have the RIGHT INFRASTRUCTURE and ENABLING ENVIRONMENT ,AKPABIO does not need to junket the globe looking for investors he will never find .It is just that AKPABIO does not want to dare the federal government ,as a “LOYAL” party man or maybe he is not serious about industrializing AKWA IBOM. I am sure the federal government will key in when it becomes clear AKPABIO mean business. We are tired of hearing mediocre excuses from a government that is allegedly not responsive and people oriented .We are tired of being told there are constitutional constraints which is impeding distribution of power.We have lost hope that constant electric power supply may NOT happen in our generation.
As regards the issue of security, I believe the most viable solution is creating employment for the populace. An idle mind is a devil's workshop. I am of the view that government has no business being in business.Hence, I don't like the concept of TROPICANA which is a government owned investment.Government only have regulatory role in any industrial relations system, which is, ensuring there is relative industrial peace and harmony through the vehicle of collective bargaining and social dialogue.And how can AKWA IBOM government create employment? By allowing Public Private Participation (PPP) projects to strive. Government cannot do it alone.
The AMAKPE Refinery project is like an albatross that is supposedly hanging on the neck of this present administration. Imagine, a litre of petrol is currently being sold for 250 per litre in UYO today.Is AKWA IBOM not an oil producing State?can we say it is the fault of the Federal government? will it be an aberration to describe the AKPABIO government as NOT responsive and incompetent? If we have a refinery,could petrol be sold at such astronomical cost?
No serious INVESTOR will consider AKWA IBOM safe if they scrutinize and evaluate the astronomical loss (financial and psychological) that was suffered by TEAM AMAKPE , all because they wanted to create employment opportunities for our jobless youths, who are all over the country running like fugitives from their homeland. They are usually engaged in jobs, as “expert” cooks, house-helps, dry-cleaners, and OKADA riders.
AKWA IBOM needs a change that will allow AMAKPE REFINERY DREAM to become a reality, a change that will create countless job opportunities for our hungry youths, a change that will ameliorate the unprecedented insecurity in AKWA IBOM today,a change that will attract investors ,a change that will ensure workers are paid regularly ,a change that will facilitate an influx of people who are expected to create wealth and employment opportunities, a change that open the IBAKA SEAPORT which investors are scare to touch with a long pole because of inconsistency in government policies, a change that will arrest the HIV/AIDS scourge in the State, a change that will bring LOVE ,HARMONY and TRANQUILITY among the divergent ethnic groups ,a change that will provide our children free education to empower them ,a change that we truncate rural –urban migration and a change that will blow away sycophancy , kidnappings, mindless killings ,unprecedented hardship that have bedeviled our beloved homeland.
And how can you partake in this change process? Forward this message to your elected representatives , AKPABIO ,JONATHAN and OBAMA.
EKEREUWEM writes from Abuja