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Saturday, September 15, 2018


Ndifreke P. Akpan (Govt House)

Relative calm and normalcy have returned to Ukanafun and Etim Ekpo axis of Akwa Ibom State, following the series of breakthroughs recorded by the State Government in partnership with the security forces operatives.

Accordingly, all nine abducted persons recently reported in the area have been rescued unhurt by the security forces, and the cult and banditry syndicate ring smashed.

Governor Udom Emmanuel made this revelation, Saturday during the monthly prayer meeting at the State Government House Chapel, in Uyo.

 “We made a remarkable breakthrough in Ukanafun and Etim Ekpo, it’s been calm, we can now feel the peace across the entire state.”

He recounted that on the first day of the previous month, “God gave us a message, God said Baal Shall Not Speak Again, and within a week a lot of commotions took place. And we followed it up by praying that God should let the wickedness of the wicked perish with the wicked, but establish the just.

Refusing to speak further on the fate of the alleged culprits, Governor Emmanuel said security strategies and action were best not disclosed publicly.

Mr Emmanuel however said there has been a remarkable show of repentance by some young people who had been members of the gangs.

“A whole lot of them have repented, they have come out to say they are sorry. If God says we should forgive, I think we may find a way to forgive those who have come out to repent. They might be the best Evangelists.”

He said from his interaction with one of them, so many of them had not acquired formal education, and were carrying out the heinous activities out of ignorance.

The Governor charged the Church and parents to do a lot more in moulding and shaping young people to grow up in the knowledge of sound moral principles.

“If they did not go to school, the church through Sunday school would have done in them what formal education could not do.”

He said the country deserves to fare better than it is doing today, and spoke about the need for improved leadership.

“Nigeria should not have been where we are today. If you take the pains to go through what God has blessed us with as a country and then you look at the past years, you would drop sentiment and look for leadership as soon as practicable.

“It is never too late to change, every country of the world runs a campaign based on her economy. A nation where you use our crude oil money to settle Paris club and London Club, and when it came to a time for refunds, no single oil producing state could be considered, rather a state that did not contribute anything was given N17bn, and they gave us the oil producing states nothing”

Citing such an action as injustice, Governor Emmanuel echoed the biblical aphorism that “righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach.”

While commending the Akwa Ibom people for the relative calm in the state despite the political season, he appealed to politicians to always take cognizance of the God factor in all their dealings, maintaining that, “We should not think that we are God in all that we do.”

He predicted better fortunes for the state on the heels of the forthcoming 31st anniversary celebration of state creation, charged everyone to imbibe the tenet of the Golden Rule, which says, “do to others, whatever you would like them do to you, this is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the Prophets. (Matthew 7:12)

Earlier in his Homily, the Pastor Uwem Okon Effiong whose text, The Chosen Rod, came from Numbers 17:1-11, said despite the upheaval about the priestly office during the time of Moses, God was able to address the issue and Aaron remained the chosen one.

Pastor Effiong insisted that no man can play the role of God in choosing leadership, except God who determines everything from the foundation of the earth.

“One thing stands out clearly, every family wants its name to be written on the rod. God gave specific instruction that the name of Aaron should be written on it.

The wife of the Governor, Mrs. Martha Udom Emmanuel, State Deputy Governor, Moses Ekpo accompanied by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem and other members of the State Executive Council, the Chief Judge, Justice Godwin Abraham, some serving and former members of the National Assembly led by Senators Effiong Bob and Emmanuel Ibokessien, former Governor Idongesit Nkanga who led his deputy, Ben Udobia and other members of the political class, were among those in the congregation.

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