Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State has solicited close partnership with the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to ensure the rapid development of the region.
Udom said without a partnership, projects executed by the commission might not address the peculiar needs of the people.
He said that once there was a synergy between both parties, the purpose of bringing development to the people would be achieved.
The governor made this known during a courtesy visit on him by the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Umana Okon Umana in Uyo, the state capital.
Commending the Minister, Niger Delta Affairs for his unwavering commitment towards state building over the years, the governor described Umana as an eminent son of Akwa Ibom State who has made invaluable contributions in the state.
He said he has left imprints of achievements wherever he was assigned responsibilities.
He called on the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and the NDDC to give Umana the needed support and cooperation to succeed.
“I really want to appreciate the Minister and one thing I will point out in line with his remark is like in those days of simply principles of management we used to assess people on what we call understanding the critical success factors,” he said.
He further said that the new structure of development in the Niger Delta region would be based on partnership and collaboration and that it was a critical factor towards the success and development of the region.
“I am grateful if we can change the narrative,” he said.
“You are lucky in the Ministry today that you have a seasoned accountant who is a minister; he will think creatively and create something there, honestly he is a worthy ambassador and he is one of the few the state will acknowledge their services and contributions; so let the ministry also honour him and we will continue to support and work together,” the governor assured.
Earlier in his remark, the Minister, Ministry of Niger Affairs, Umana, who was accompanied by Minister of State, Niger Delta Affairs, Sharon Ikeazor; administrator of NDDC, Effiong Akwa, and other officials of NDDC, thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for accepting to host the National Council of Niger Delta (NCND) organised by the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and NDDC, commending the governor for the massive transformation and life-touching projects in the state.
Umana also acknowledged the collaboration and support of Governor Udom Emmanuel with the Federal Government which was instrumental through the approval given by President Muhammadu Buhari, to establish Oil and Gas Free Zones in Akwa Ibom, describing the governor as a leader who has been focused on development and issues of positive impacts on the people.
He explained that the ministry’s approach in the development of the Niger Delta region seeks partnership with governors of the region to guide the development process and work in sync to achieve the desired results for the people.
“We are taking steps to ensure that we can change the future, if we cannot do much about the past, we have started a process of consulting with state governors before projects are embarked upon, we don’t want a situation where state governors sit and then find out that work is starting in their states and what is going on may not fit into the development plans of the various states.
“We are taking that seriously and we’ll ensure that state government lead the way, guide the development process so that the NDDC as an interventionist agency can do better,” the Minister stated.