Henry Umahi, Head, Insight & Investigations
Someone once said that Governor Udom Emmanuel has literally given Akwa Ibom State the wings to fly to the firmament of greatness in all sectors of the economy. There is certainly no doubt about this. A silent performer, he has notched up gigantic achievements irrespective of the prevailing economic challenges. To rub it in, he announced, during his second term swearing-in ceremony, that renewed focus on industrialisation and the development of other new key areas of investments would define his “completion agenda.”
With the launch and subsequent commencement of commercial flights by Ibom Air, the state made history as the first to do so in Nigeria. The government also built the King’s Flour Mill, a plywood industry and a 2x60KVA transmission substation in Etim, Mkpat Enin Local Government Area to optimise productivity in the zone marked as the state’s industrial belt. He had attracted other investment in the state, with his government partnering with entrepreneurs in joint ventures. To his credit are the prepaid meter company and the syringe producing company, among others.
Recognising that a healthy man is a wealthy man, Emmanuel remodelled and re-equipped healthcare facilities in the state. Of particular reference is the 77-year-old General Hospital at Oron, which he completely overhauled. He also embarked on massive recruitment of doctors and other health workers.
The Akwa Ibom governor has sustained the state as a safe haven for residents, tourists and investors by partnering with security agencies.
His government is actively engaged in agriculture, even as education remains on the front burner. In terms of infrastructure, he has rehabilitated, constructed and dualised many state and federal roads.
The state has a robust sports policy that gives youths hope for a bright future. The state maintains two teams in the Nigerian football league.
Born on July 11, 1966, in Awa Iman, Onna Local Government Area of Akwa State, Emmanuel is a chartered accountant by profession. Before he was elected governor in 2015, he was Secretary to the State Government (SSG). He is a devout Christian and advocate of peace.