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A’Ibom Dialogue Ends In Uyo As Gov Eno Restructures Ministries, Makes Fresh Appointments

Akwa Ibom State Governor, Pastor Umo Eno, has opened a pathway on the new vista of his ARISE Agenda-driven administration by restructuring Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs.

In the new arrangement, the Ministry of Agriculture has been merged with Rural Development, a new Ministry created for Water Resources and Sanitation while the Ministry of Power will function in a separate capacity.

Governor Umo Eno announced this while addressing participants on the Day 3 of the Akwa Ibom Dialogue for interpretation and implementation of the A.R.I.S.E. Agenda blueprint held at Ibom Icon Hotel and Golf Resort, Uyo.

Umo Eno Ministries
Gov Umo Eno with Mrs Rose Eshiet

On the merger of Agriculture and Rural Development in one Ministry, Governor Eno reasoned that agriculture is majorly practised in the rural setting where there is the availability of farmlands, saying that the two are strongly related and needed to be brought together for proper implementation of the A.R.I.S.E. Agenda.

“I want to speak on Rural development and I will like to announce that the Ministry of Agriculture will now be merged with the Ministry of Rural Development. So we are going to have the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

“This is because Agriculture is in the rural areas and there are so many things we need to rearrange in this dispensation, and maybe that will give us comfort”, he stated.

He decried the state exclusion in water-related benefits from the central government and donor agencies and told the participants that the creation of a designated Ministry for Water Resources will fully integrate the state into the United Nations Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, WASH, programme and reposition the state to implement the existing Water Law as well as tackle other water and sanitation related issues most appropriately.

Related: Governor Eno Meets Permanent Secretaries, Presents Blueprint, ARISE Agenda

The Governor harped on the critical role of the power sector in the A.R.I.S.E. Agenda blueprint and advised whoever will be appointed to oversee the Ministry brace up to the demand of the new office and deliver on his duties.

Governor Eno frowned at the inability of the Ibom FADAMA Micro Finance Bank to achieve its fundamental objective of assisting farmers with credit facilities and the continuous depletion of shareholders’ funds and ordered the immediate disbandment of the Management team to make way for a functional team to ensure results.

He said: “I don’t have faith in the present management of Ibom FADAMA and as long as that management is in place, I will not empower that bank. We need brand new management so that we will be able to work together and link the farmers to the bank. We have 496, 000 farmers registered in this state. We can link them to the Bank so that when we release the money to the bank, it will go straight to those farmers.”

He announced the constitution of a new Executive Council for his administration on Thursday, July 27, adding that the new cabinet will take off immediately with a maiden Executive Council meeting slated for Friday, 28 by 11 am and informed the gathering that governance in the new administration will be run in a private sector template to ensure results.

The state Chief Executive urged the Commissioners designate to pay rapt attention to all deliberations and contributions by resource persons from various sectors at the summit to enable them to function maximally in their assigned portfolios as there is no guarantee of returning to previous places of assignment.

He encouraged collaborations among MDAs, explaining that a situation where parastatals choose to stand alone, not benefitting from or leveraging on the works of other MDAs will have to be played down to avoid waste of time and resources.

“What I have seen and what we are trying to do in the next four years at least is to make sure that the MDAs don’t build a kingdom around themselves. We would want to break the walls, and let us see that we are working as one state government, addressing the same goal.

Read Also: A’Ibom Assembly Ratifies Commissioners, Special Adviser Into State Council

“A situation where several MDAs want to do their own thing and they stand alone, not benefitting or leveraging on the work that has been done by another MDA, I think we will have to play it down a bit because it is a waste of money and waste of time”.

Impressed by the exceptional performance of the former Group General Manager of NNPC in charge of Crude Oil, Mrs Rose Eshiet, at the Sectoral Road Map Presentations of the Summit, the Governor announced her immediate appointment as Honorary Special Adviser on Oil and Gas, alongside Mrs Ime Udoh and Mr Nkereuwem Onung, who were appointed Honorary Special Advisers on Culture And Tourism, while Miss Linda Umoh was appointed Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Diaspora Affairs.

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