By PATRICK ABANG, Calabar –
A former member of the House of Representatives and People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Chieftain in Akwa-Ibom State, Chief Nduese Essien has called for a stop in the yearly celebration of the creation of the state as its a total waste of public funds and man hour.
According to the former lawmaker, “the effort in making Ibom Air the leading airline in the country is commendable”.
“The governor’s achievements in various infrastructural development projects like the just commissioned 10 lane road, Uyo Ikot Ekpene road and several others plus the industries is highly commendable”.
Chief Nduese, who spoke from Abuja in a phone interaction with some journalists on Saturday, said the governor would have done more but for the various insipid distractions caused by his perennial antagonists at times for no just cause.
He called on the Akwa Ibom people to reduce the level of distraction in the remaining period of the governor’s tenure to enable him tidy up his programmes and projects to the benefit of the state.
On his absence during the celebration of the 35th celebration of the state creation, he said “the anniversary celebration is not one of my priority events”.
Chief Nduese, who stated that he was not aware of how much the state budgeted and spent for the celebration, pointed out that “the state was created for development and not for annual celebration.
He said: “Akwa Ibom was created the same day with Katsina and Akwa Ibom has continued with annual anniversary celebration while Katrina does not and all the states created in Nigeria have long stopped anniversary celebrations.
“The resources spent on anniversary celebrations could be applied for other developments instead of wasting it away in frivolous anniversary celebration activities” .
He alleged that the celebrations are instigated and encouraged by the people in government, who use such celebrations as avenue for siphoning ideal money into their pockets.
He said: “Nigeria at 62 may also be celebrated on October 1 despite the fact that the country is now worse of than at independence”.
“With our country in distance of bankruptcy, insecurity, economic meltdown, disunity and mutual distrust, educational dislocation and universal corruption, there is no basis to celebrate anniversaries of Nigeria’s independence”.