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UKANAFUN LAWMAKER SETTLES HOSPITAL BILLS FOR 20 INDIGENT PATIENTS

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FETES MARKET MEN /WOMEN

AS YOUTH LEADERS PASS VOTE OF CONFIDENCE ON THE LAWMAKER

Earlier yesterday, 1st April, 2017, the Honourable Member Representing Ukanafun State Constituency in the State House of Assembly, Hon. (Deac.) Otobong Akpan paid a seeming surprise visit to his constituents particularly to patients at various Health institutions and Akpan Essiet Market traders and buyers, in Ukanafun LGA.

During the visit, the lawmaker doled out largesse to upset the bills of over 20 indigent patients in different health institutions as well as gave financial succor to the market men and women of the local government’s owned Akpan Essiet Market.

At Ukanafun Health Center, the lawmaker paid 130.000 and 75.000 respectively for two patients suffering from bilateral hynia: Mrs. Nsini Joseph from Unen Abasi Atai and Mrs. Blessing Akpanudo from Ikot Akai.

Narrating her ordeal, Mrs. Joseph said she was operated of a bilateral hynia at the cost of 130.000 which she managed to deposit 30.000 for the operation to takeoff while her husband went looking for who to sell their lands for in order to get the balance but the lawmaker came as a ssurprise to her aid.

“As I speak, my husband is running to everywhere looking for who the sell our only lands in order to balance the hospital bill. I have been left all alone without food if not for the matron who has been comforting me. God will bless this man (Hon. Otobong Akpan ) for coming to my aid. I am very happy!”, she said.

Mr. Douglas Sampson a native of Ikot Inyang, OrukAnam LGA, who was operated of Urine Retention said he was at the point in between death or alive when the lawmaker came to pay the sum of 65.000 balance for his operation and even went extra miles to give him another ten thousand naira for his feeding.

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Mr. Sampson said he didn’t hope of a miracle such that was performed by the lawmaker, adding : ” I did not dream of this kind of miracle especially in this time of recession in our country. You are a rare politician and my Savior. God will bless you for me”.

Another hynia patient in the hospital, Mr. Ekikere Amos Udoudom from Ikot Akpan Afaha, Ukanafun LGA and Mr. Mark Udoudo from Ikot Ewara in Ward 11, who narrated their stories amidst tears , rained prayers on the lawmaker for touching their lives positively.

Speaking in Vernacular, the duo said: ” yak ata Awasi aliong House Member achid.
Sa anye anama uto mkpom ino gire “.

Expressing their happiness, they said that for the lawmaker to pay 50.000 each to upset their bills marks God’s visitation for their lives and families, and further appreciated him for adding 10.000 each as ‘pocket monies’ for them.

On her part, Mrs Gift Udeme, a nursing mother at the maternity ward, from Uruk Ata 2, Etim Ekpo LGA said she was impressed to be a partaker of such visit, commending the lawmaker for the kind gesture, and described it as not only unique but unprecedented in her life.

She said: ” for a whole House Member to come and visit me, I count myself lucky and blessed. God will bless this man for me ooo. I will tell my husband”.

Speaking also, one of the matrons /nurses at the hospitals, Mrs. Paulina Ukafor Umoh said most of the patients in the hospital were neither struggling to pay their bills or left alone in their sick beds by their relatives.

She commended the philanthropist for the bold step, saying that the gesture will not leave their minds in a hurry as, according to her, such was unprecedented and unthinkable of a politician especially in this clime.

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Mrs. Umoh who prayed God’s continued grace for the lawmaker, described him as a Savior , a comforter and a friend of the poor /needy.

“I have been here in Ukanafun for over 17 years and I have not witness this kind of thing before, I am shock and happy. God will bless you for remembering the needy, the poor, and for coming at the point of their dire needs “, she noted.

The matrons, nurses, clinic workers were not left out in the spree, as they all went back home smiling gorgeously.

Meanwhile, the philanthropic show was suddenly taken to another dimension. This time, the stage was the popular Ukanafun local government owned Urua Akpan Essiet – the only economic hub of Ukanafun local government council.

The cerebral lawmaker, accompanied by legion of youthful entourage, was in Akpan Essiet Market to share a natural empathy with the market men, women (both buyers and sellers).

To share in their plight and to empower them by way of buying what ordinarily would go for hundreds and paying in thousands, thus in an unselective pattern.

Hundreds of Ukanafun constituents were empowered through this way. Pleasantries, banters and affection were shared also through the process, our reporter recounted.

Words of appreciation, goodwill messages and pats on the back were showered on the lawmaker by the benefiting market men and women.

Speaking at the office of the market’s president, the lawmaker said he was there at the market to feel their pulses and presence by buying from them, paying and showing them love in his own special way.

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“I just felt like coming to the market today to be part of you. To share in the activities of my constituency market and show love with you”, he said.

The erudite lawmaker who however commended the management of the market for their effective management, especially for maintaining peace and order in the market, pledged to partner with the market management in bettering the lots of the traders.

Deac Akpan who gave at least 10.000 each to over a hundred of traders and buyers he met on his way, promised that he had decided to be paying them such surprise visit always.

Responding, the Market President, Chief (Elder ) Henry Harry Udom who gave the lawmaker and his entourage a rousing welcome to the market said he was impressed to witness such surprise gestures courtesy of the lawmaker.

Chief Udom averred that the lawmaker deserve kudos and a vote of confidence for the kind gesture, and appealed for more of such gestures.

Speaking in the same vein, the market youth leader, Comr Nsikan Harry said the youth wing of the market and indeed the local government were happy with the gesture and however moved a motion for a vote of confidence on the lawmaker.

Meanwhile, the lawmaker was accompanied on the visits by: Hon.Shadrach Ekpo, a supervisory councillor for Works, Adede Aniebiet Umohukoh (aka Simple ), Comr. Udeme Akpan Bassey, Comr. Ufokobong Owen, Comr. Endurance Johnson, Comr. Akanimo Udofia, Comr. Mfreke, Comr. Enobong Oliver, Comr. Kenworld Jumbo, Comr. Kingsley Jonah, Comr. Eyakndue Udoidung, Comr. Young Mark, amongst others.

 

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TRIBUNAL THROWS OUT PETITION AGAINST IKONO FEDERAL LAWMAKER

The National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly Election Petition Tribunal in Uyo, Friday dismissed the petition challenging the election of Hon Emmanuel Ukpong-udo as member of Ikono/Ini Federal Constituency.

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TRIBUNAL THROWS OUT PETITION AGAINST IKONO FEDERAL LAWMAKER

Hon. Emmanuel Ukpong Udo, Member Representing Ikono Federal Constituency

Hon. Emmanuel Ukpong Udo, Member Representing Ikono Federal Constituency

The National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly Election Petition Tribunal in Uyo, Friday dismissed the petition challenging the election of Hon Emmanuel Ukpong-udo as member of Ikono/Ini Federal Constituency.

The tribunal dismissed the petition jointly filed by the All Progressives Congress, APC, and their candidate, Edidiong Idiong, citing breach of procedure on the part of the petitioners.

The tribunal ruled that the petitioners failed to file the mandatory application for pre-trial within the stipulated 7days.

The legal implication of today’s decision is that the petition filed by the APC and its candidate for the Ini/Ikono Federal Constituency has been laid to rest.

Appearing for the petitioners were Ubong Offiong of Victor Iyanam & CO while Barr. Godwill Umoh, O. B. Akpan, Anietie Bassey, Linus Uduk were present for the first respondent, PDP.

The second respondent, Hon Emmanuel Ukpong-udo, was represented by Solomon Umoh SAN, Emmanuel Akpan, Ekemini Udim, Santos Eleja, Clement Imoh and Nsima Akpabio

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Akwa Ibom children ply dangerous river in rickety boats to access education

They suffer the risk of drowning in rickety river. Two children were said to have been rescued when a boat mishap happened a fortnight ago leaving them severely injured, after being rescued by a skilled swimmer

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Akwa Ibom children ply dangerous river in rickety boats to access education

Pupils using boat to cross over the river

Pupils using boat to cross over the river

‘We’ve lost faith in government’ – Village Head

By Uduakabasi Ikpat/Ofonime Honesty & Joseph Atainyang

Like a fairy tale, told in the days of old, when humanity coped with nature in most catastrophic circumstances, villages exist in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria, where school pupils would cross a deadly river on a daily basis to access basic education.

School children from four years old are exposed to harsh whether condition as they walk through swamps, get drenched before crossing a fishing settlement to where they acquire education.

Unlike what now obtains in modern cities in Nigeria, where children enjoy the luxury of being conveyed in air conditioned vehicles by parents and guardians to and from their schools, those of Ikot Mfon and Ndiya Usung Inyang communities in Etinan and Nsit Ubium Local Government Areas, respectively, are not so fortunate.

They suffer the risk of drowning in rickety river. Two children were said to have been rescued when a boat mishap happened a fortnight ago leaving them severely injured, after being rescued by a skilled swimmer.

The Ikot Mfon/Ndiya River serves as the boundary between the two communities.
The river is where a popular Catholic Missionary identified as Reverend Father Fintan drowned while spreading the gospel of Christ as far back as the late 1800s. His tombstone stands on the river bank.

The children attend Goodnews International Nursery School, Ndiya Usung Inyang; Qua-Iboe Church Central School, Ndiya and Comprehensive Secondary School, Ndiya. Meanwhile, the only educational institution available in Ikot Mfon community is the Saint Francis Catholic Primary School.

Ikot Mfon is in Ward 2, in Etinan. It has no social amenities like electricity, motorable roads, and having been cut off from the conjoined Ndiya community of Nsit Ubium LGA, has no attraction to its local market, where petty traders gather to sell their wares.

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Inhabited by local farmers, fishermen and artisans, and subjected to unfavourable conditions, the community is unhappy at the level of abandonment by government. They condemn a situation in which government officials would come to them during elections period, take their votes but run back to the state capital, Uyo, as soon as the political period was over.

Speaking with our team, the Village Head of Ikot Mfon, Eteidung Oscar Ekanem said the road from Ndiya which links the bridge to his community existed before the civil war.

Eteidung Ekanem said it is a federal government road leading to Ikot Ubo and also to Abak town. He lamented that the collapsed bridge had long failed without efforts to get it reconstructed, until the year 2016 when a lorry loaded with about 80 bags of kernel fell into the river, destroying the dilapidated bridge in the process.

Eteidung Ekanem, who spoke through village council chairman, Obong John Williamson stated that all four persons on board perished in the river, including a police officer, with only one survivor.

His words, “The road had been there before the civil war. We don’t have government attention here. They only come here when they need our votes. But after every election, they would leave us and run back to Uyo.

“That river has consumed many persons. All four persons died, except one in 2016 when a kernel merchant wanted to cross the bridge with about 70 or 80 bags of the product. The police officer who came with them also died. It was published everywhere in the media.

“The whole of this Ward II does not have electricity. When they brought electricity here, they diverted it to Udom’s (the governor’s) side. We shall never be part of this system again. We are not Ikot Mfon (grace family). They have counted us out of everything they are doing.

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“I am calling on the federal government to come to our rescue, knowing that the state government has no good intention towards us. They have come for inspection over 30 times. Nobody is doing anything about it. We are crying daily because of our children. Please, tell the government to come to our aid”, the visibly emotional man concluded.

Aligning his views with that of Eteidung Ekanem, a family head in Ikot Mfon, Obong John Francis Aaron observed that the situation is deadly, especially as children are daily crossing the river to acquire education, adding that it also affects the women who engage in commercial activities.

The Youth Leader of Ikot Mfon, Mr Francis Udofot and Celestine Johnson, a youth of the community, decried the anguish they experience in the area. They said the community boasts of human capital that engages in agro based activities, as they are blessed with enormous vegetation and arable land. They mentioned that they have crude oil and oil palm.

Our team spoke with school children who shared their thoughts on the circumstance. Happiness Anietie and Maurice Etuk are Basic 5 pupils of the Goodnews International Nursery School who said they are always scared while crossing the river.

Grace Peter, Basic 4, and three children of the same parents: Mary Patrick, Matthew Patrick and Gabriel Patrick of Basic 3, 2 and 1 all from Usung Esuk of Ikot Mfon village called on the government to step into the matter and safe them from imminent danger.

Market women, including Comfort Morrison from Ikot Ante, Bibiana Michael from Ikot Mfon and Eno Evangelist from Ndiya lamented that their businesses which hitherto had flourished, was currently crumbling after the collapse of the linking bridge. They informed that their fare is always N100 to cross over to another side of the road.

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Meanwhile, a local miner of sharp sand, William Jeremiah, together with Ekomobong Samuel told our team that the two communities have been living peacefully ever before the bridge collapsed. They narrated that many people do not find it easy to cross the water.

They maintained that the school children would even stand in the rain for a long time and sometimes return home when there is no canoe to paddle them to the other side.

However, the federal government under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has constantly been announcing her interest in developing the local communities and linking them up with cities to boost economic viability. The government has promised to prioritize the development of every part of the country.

In his Democracy Day Address, President Buhari repeatedly stated that his government would ensure the construction of critical feeder roads in the local areas so as to facilitate the transportation of food and other commodities.

Meanwhile, the member representing Etinan Federal Constituency, Barr Onofiok Luke could not respond to the development as calls and text messages sent to his cell phone attracted no feedback.

Ikot Mfon Community is however blessed with prominent scholars like Prof Ntiero Umoren of the University of Uyo and the late Dr Dennis Umoren, while the neighboring Ndiya of Nsit Ubium is blessed with the former Akwa Ibom State Secretary to Government and Managing Director, Oil and Gas Free Zones Authority, Mr. Umana Okon Umana, as well as Mr Inyang Unya.
Their people called on them to properly relate with relevant government agencies in order to wipe their tears away.

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AKWA IBOM FEDERAL LAWMAKERS TO RAKE MILLIONS TOMORROW AS ALLOWANCES

Federal Lawmakers from Akwa Ibom extraction will tomorrow Tuesday 11, June 2019 after their swearing-in be paid….

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AKWA IBOM FEDERAL LAWMAKERS TO RAKE MILLIONS TOMORROW AS ALLOWANCES

Federal Lawmakers from Akwa Ibom extraction will tomorrow Tuesday 11, June 2019 after their swearing-in be paid N129,656,625 million naira as allowances.

National Assembly Service Commission will pay the sum of N10,132,000:00 to each of the three Senators representing Akwa Ibom senatorial districts.

The ten Federal of Representatives will also get N9,926,062.5 each as their furniture and accommodation allowance.

Congratulations let the work begin. Represent us well.

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