In a bid to appreciate and encourage the good works of the Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr. Nsima Ekere, the people of Edemaya under the umbrella of Mboho Edemaya Cultural Organization, organized a grand reception for Ekere and conferred him with a chieftaincy title of Obong Unwana Edemaya.
The reception which took pla
ce at Methodist Central School, Ekpene Enin in Ikot Abasi Local Government Area, had in attendance a host of personalities from within and outside the state including the Paramount Ruler of Ikot Abasi Local Government Area, Edidem Udo Joe Ntok Obom, the State Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Amadu Attai, and the Member for Ukanafun/Oruk Anam Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Obongunwana Emmanuel Ukoette.
Among Mr. Ekere’s friends from outside the state present were the Minister of State for Agriculture, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, Senator Sam Anyanwu (Imo East), Senator Mao Ohuabunwa (Abia North), Senator Baba Kaka Bashir Garbai (Borno Central) and a former Senator for Kogi Central, Senator Nurudeen Abatemi-Usman.
Ekere who thanked his people for the honour done him, restated the commitment of the present board and management of the commission to complete abandoned projects as much as possible.
According to him, “It is unfair to abandon government projects when money has been spent already. The current board and management of NDDC are committed to completing abandoned NDDC projects as much as possible. We don’t care who awarded them. As long as they will touch the lives of the people, we will go ahead and complete them.”
Ekere while assuring Edemaya people of a fair share of NDDC projects but charged them and people of other communities in the Niger Delta region to co-operate with contractors handling projects in their communities, said that his aim was to achieve the core mandates of NDDC adding that such was why he was not keen on discussing issues relating to 2019 elections because it was too early and would divide his attention to succeed on his present assignment.
“Many speakers talked about 2019 today. My message to Akwa Ibom people is that the time for elections has not yet come. Allow me and other government officials to do the job we are doing for you now. When the time for elections comes, if you make that demand again, I will respond. But for now, allow me work in NDDC,” he said.
The NDDC MD, who expressed surprise at the huge turnout for the reception which he said he was made to understand, would be low key by the President of Mboho Edemaya, Barr. Edidiong Ubeh, also thanked Edemaya Clan Council of Chiefs for the revered chieftaincy title conferred on him.
Earlier in his remarks, The Managing Director of the Oil and Gas Free Zones Authority, Mr. Umana Umana, described Ekere, as a star and performer who has recorded giant strides in the commission in the last eight months, adding that what looked like a rift between them arose as a result of orchestrated evil design of political manipulators.
Umana who lauded Ekere for managing the NDDC in accordance with its core mandate, said “That is why in his first three months in office, bulldozers started moving all over Akwa Ibom State. Some people instead of celebrating it got angry. The people need development,”
Umana commended the NDDC boss for intervening to fix the Port Harcourt-Eleme Road to ease access to the operational base of his agency and several oil and gas companies.
Declaring that he was very proud of Ekere’s track record, Umana predicted that “it is only a matter of time, he will go higher.”
He described the NDDC boss as more of a brother than a friend and lamented that they were made to look like adversaries in the past by an evil design.
“There was a time both of us looked for the governorship of Akwa Ibom State. By some evil design, not by choice, we were made to look like adversaries, not like brothers. But we are wiser. We are not just friends but brothers. I am behind my brother, Mr. Nsima Ekere. He is a star and a performer,” he said.
Mr. Umana thanked the Mboho Edemaya for the honour done both of them.
Also in his goodwill message, the former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, His Excellency Obong Victor Attah, said that he was highly pleased with the good job Ekere was doing at the Niger Delta Development Commission noting that within a short period of time in office he has achieved what other MD’s of NDDC could not achieve.
He said, “With the ongoing restructuring witnessed in NDDC within the past 6months and the success attained, His Excellency Nsima Ekere is an achiever and should be given higher responsibilities,”.