…doles out Cars, Business grants

In what is now the fourth phase of empowerment for the people of Ikono/Ini Federal Constituency, the member representing the constituency in the House of Representatives, Rep Emmanuel Ukpong-udo today splashed a total of N40 million in business empowerment grants as part of the end-of-year festivities.

In a ceremony held in his country home in Ikot Akpa Edet Ndiya in Ikono Local Government Area, and witnessed by a mammoth crowd of indigenes and friends from within and outside the community, Rep Ukpong-udo was on hand to oversee the disbursement of business grants in the ranges 1million, 1.5million and 2million Naira to 18 beneficiaries from his constituency. In addition to the business empowerment grants, he presented two cars to another two members of his constituency.

Speaking, Rep Ukpong-udo reiterated that he is not sold out to the idea of a one-time empowerment of his constituents, hence this ceremony. The Lawmaker expressed gratitude to His Excellency, the Governor of the State for the food items distributed across the State and his excellent performances in the last 6years and stating his delight in supporting the Governor’s efforts at putting smiles on the faces of the people as his reason for hosting this Christmas get-together to share the joy of the Yuletide with his people.

Rep Ukpong-udo announced that he has scheduled two mega empowerments lined up in 2022 – Phases 5 and 6 of his empowerment – for Quarter 1 (January – March) and Quarter 4 (October – December) of 2022, respectively.
He disclosed that for today’s ceremony, out of the 18 beneficiaries of this 4th round of empowerment, direct cash transfers had already been made to about 5 beneficiaries who were unavoidably absent due to holiday engagements.

The Lawmaker also mentioned that four other recipients of car gifts opted for the cash equivalents. He went further to present Christmas cash gifts running into several millions of Naira, as well as over 600 bags of rice and food items amounting to about 3 million Naira, to several families as well as the community leadership and stakeholders, the party supporters and others present at the ceremony.

Rep Ukpong-udo reiterated his desire to continue to put smiles on the faces of more people for the opportunity given him to represent them, noting that even 10 terms in office will not be enough to reach out to his people at the level he would love to. He, however, promised that he will not relent on his mission to ensure that every home in the constituency is touched positively during his tenure.

Ukpong-udo also noted that he is privileged to serve as the Representative of the people, only by the Grace of God, the support of the State Governor and the mandate of the people of Ikono/Ini and so he restated his support for Governor Udom Emmanuel’s completion agenda towards giving the State a viable successor.

In a goodwill message at the ceremony, Sir Victor Etefia, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Petroleum Resources, praised Obong Ukpong-udo for having enlightened Ikono-Ini on what is involved in the business of representation and that the people of the area are very proud of him. He spoke on the burning issue of zoning ahead of 2023, explaining that performance is the crux of the matter (of leadership). Sir Etefia said the people are not interested in who zoning favours if the individual does not have the capacity to deliver, reminding that many had absconded upon being given the mandate, while others claimed resources were not available to meet the people’s expectations.

Barr. Goddy Umoh, Chairman, Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly Service Commission, in his goodwill message, also echoed the superlative performance of Obong Ukpong-udo, stating that, “I have played the politics of this Federal Constituency, and I can boldly say it has never been this good. Macaire (Rep. Ukpong-udo) has exceeded expectations….” He noted that zoning and streamlining is part of the politics of the constituency but that the people will ensure the best of the candidates emerges at the appropriate time.

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Other speakers included Barr. Moses Akpan, the State Organising Secretary of the PDP, who stated that since Ukpong-udo has not disappointed Ikono/Ini people, God will not disappoint him, as well as Barr. Ekemini Uba, PDP Chapter Chairman, Ikono, who noted that the party is very proud of Rep Ukpong-udo having raised the bar of representation to a very enviable height.

Mr. Israel Idaisin, Chairman, Ini Local Government Area, was also among those who delivered good will messages and were unanimous in their praise for Obong Emmanuel Ukpong-udo’s impressive performance as Member representing Ikono/Ini Federal Constituency in Green Chamber of the National Assembly.

Among guests at the event were Prof. Augustine Umoh – Commissioner, Ministry of Health, Hon. Asuquo Nnana, Member representing Ikono State, Constituency, Mrs. Ofon Mike – Secretary, Ikono Local Government Council, Barr. Edet Inyangidim, DG Mkpoikana Abasi Campaign Group, Barr. O. B. Akpan, Obong Mike Ene, Prince George Okon, Hon. Ndifreke Itam, Dr Abasiono Okon, PDP Stakeholders from Ikono and Ini, Mrs Edith Idaisin, wife of the Chairman of Ini Local Government Council, Councillors and Supervisors from Ikono and Ini LGAs, SAs to Governor, women and youths from the constituency.