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Sunday, 29 July 2018


Ndifreke P. Akpan (Govt House)

Governor Udom Emmanuel has expressed readiness to support the planned construction of a Research and Development Centre by the Akwa Ibom State branch of the University of Lagos Alumni Association.

Governor Emmanuel who expressed the willingness to show the same commitment he has displayed towards the development of Akwa Ibom to the Alumni Association promised to assist in laying the foundation for the project on Tuesday, July 31st, 2018.

The Governor while addressing members of the branch during a courtesy call on him at Government House Uyo, said he was always proud of the organization and described the proposed centre as a great foresight that will be celebrated at completion by the nation.

He thanked the Alumni for the honour in naming the main hall of the Research and Development Centre after him, saying, "I pray that God who gave the vision will make us realize it in a very glorious form. Who knows, by the time we finish the 18 apartment, it might turn to 180, nobody can tell."

He enjoined the alumni to maintain the core values that those from UNILAG were known for, explaining that even if the Association could not put up physical developments, they could promote ethics and few etiquettes that will align with the core values of the university.

He expressed appreciation to the organization for acknowledging his efforts at developing the state maintaining that, "as much as you are doing infrastructure, you must also think of what the people would eat? That is why we do a whole lot, not just what government can do but how to drive the psyche of the people to follow the trend."

The State Chief Executive said the first consideration of developed nations of the world is the ability to feed their citizens which was why his administration started with promises of things that were not rocket sciences.

Through his deliberate efforts to address food crisis, Governor Emmanuel noted that the price of garri which was about #200 for 3 cups at the inception of his administration was hovering around 11 and 13 cups for #200 at the end of the first quarter of this year.

According to the Governor, "we have developed Cocoa to 26,000 hectares and we are bringing one of the best processing plants because what differentiates the product, is the flavour that goes into the international market and we normally lose flavour because of the drying process."

He announced that government was bringing a processing plant that will dry and process then make it possible for cocoa from Akwa Ibom State to compete favourably in the international market.

The Governor said his rice production was on course, adding that every single grain of rice to be bought and distributed to the people by December this year will come from the state, even as he encouraged the people to go back to the farm using the Green Houses for planting tomatoes on the Ibom International Airport road as a motivator.

He reminded the people that it was the domestic market that brought China to where they are today adding that for a country like Nigeria, with over 170 million people, the domestic market should sustain the economy.

Earlier,  the President, University of Lagos Alumni Association, Akwa Ibom State branch, Senator Effiong Bob stated that the body was out to build a Research and Development Centre, first of its kind outside the campus since the University was established.

The branch president expressed appreciation to the Governor for the support so far given to the association particularly the provision of land for the project and sued for more; noting that the proposed facility which is in line with the Dakkada philosophy of the present administration was not only a vision for today but for the future generation.

Senator Bob described the branch as a very active one with over 300 members, most of whom have been resource base for different administrations in Akwa Ibom and declared that the main hall of the Resource and Development Centre will be named after Governor Emmanuel.

He said that the Governor had done much for the state within 3 years especially by ensuring peace which he scored him 100 percent and identified rice production, coconut plantation and refinery, and the bamboo project at Oruk Anam as some of the major reference points of the Udom Emmnauel's agriculture revolution.

According to Senator Bob, "we hope and pray for peaceful reign in your tenure and assure you that we from UNILAG, old and new, will support your administration."

He added that with all the human and material resources, they intended to finish the first phase of the research center within 2 months.

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