Okon: The Easiest Way to Have Issues with EFCC Is to Be a Finance Commissioner

ByIrene L. Joffman

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Mr. Akan Okon, fast previous Commissioner for Financial Development and Ibom Deep Seaport and governorship aspirant in Akwa Ibom Condition in this interaction with Okon Bassey bares his brain on why he wishes to do well his former boss Governor Udom Emmanuel in 2023

Are you happy with your overall performance although in the point out executive council of the Akwa Ibom Point out Federal government?

Whilst in office God supporting me, I discharged my responsibilities and the several assignments given to me creditably. I joined Akwa Ibom Point out Govt in 2013 and my 1st assignment was at the Ministry of Financial Development. I used 6 months there as Commissioner and at the finish of 6 months I was moved to the Ministry of Finance exactly where I served to the finish of that administration led by Governor Godswill Akpabio. When Governor Udom Emmanuel gained the election in 2015 and was sworn in as Governor, I was reappointed into that workplace. That has designed me maintain the record as the only person to serve two Governors as Finance Commissioner. I want to say that I served in that business office with integrity. Why do I say so, in Nigeria, the simplest way to have problems with EFCC is to be a Finance Commissioner. To the glory of God I served there and I still left in December, 2016. EFCC has never ever invited me and they will under no circumstances invite me.

From that office I was despatched to the Ministry of Housing & City Renewal, and afterwards, Ministry of Specific Duties. My accountability and important deliverable was the 21-storey developing which I am sure all of us can see. One more project the Ministry delivered underneath my supervision was the Governor’s lodge in Lagos. The lodge has due to the fact been completed and place to use. The airport was beneath my supervision. Staying in that Ministry gave me the chance to suitable the anomaly that I recognize at our airport. Prior to now, when airline passengers shift into the airport terminal constructing to look at in or get hold of boarding pass, you will pass by means of protection. When there is a want to use the ease you will have to go out of the security checkpoint and then occur back again to be screened. In point in individuals times of when there ended up flight delays, there was no place for people today ready to obtain h2o, simply because the only put water was offered was within the departure hall which they did not have obtain to. That necessitated the construction of a new developing connected to the present terminal, exactly where you have a restaurant, a gift store, pharmacy and ease for users of the general public.
Right now, if you are travelling, while waiting at the departure corridor, if you have to occur out of the security location, it will not be simply because you want to use the usefulness. Now also, customers of the public can have accessibility to whatever issue they will need at the airport.

From that Ministry I was moved to Exclusive Duties and Aviation Improvement, my responsibility was to make sure that we experienced Ibom Air traveling and I am satisfied these days to the glory of God, Ibom Air is flying and within a pretty limited period of time it has become the airline of initial option for tourists in Nigeria. The large standards of qualified support supply available by the airline has increased customers’ targeted visitors to our airport and has rendered the present terminal setting up insufficient that is what necessitated the move for the new permanent worldwide terminal setting up which is beneath design. When done, the terminal will be 1 of the greatest in Africa.

From that Ministry I was moved to the Ministry of Economic Progress & Ibom Deep seaport. The crucial deliverable there was to be certain that we acquire the acceptance for the progress of Ibom deep seaport, an approval that eluded us for above 20 yrs as a Condition and by God’s grace on 16th December, 2020, we obtained that acceptance and I want to thank Governor Udom Emmanuel, the Chairperson of the Technical Committee on Ibom deep seaport, Mrs. Mfon Usoro, for their endeavours and all the items they did to ensure that we obtained that acceptance.

The dilemma was if I am happy, in all that I have explained, God helped me to provide on these assignments and I am content I was ready to execute all the duties and assignments supplied to me and to that extent I am extremely joyful I was capable to do what I did.

What crucial requirements have you discovered in the condition that you intend to meet as Governor of Akwa Ibom State?

To be productive in any vocation, you need to have to go through a lot of qualification and proficiency teaching. At 34 many years, Akwa Ibom Point out are unable to manage to be an experimental industry wherever persons arrive to master management in public services. We will need an individual who has been all-around and understudied the various sectors of the State’s financial system, and also understands the worries that our folks are going through so that from day a single, he will hit the floor managing in embarking on those people policies and programmes that will lead to an improvement in the standard of living of our persons. I want to thank Governor Udom Emmanuel for enabling God to use him to prepare me in public support. As you are conscious, I have traversed a lot of Ministries, this was a instruction and included benefit for me. A Ministry like Economic Progress gave me an possibility to have in-depth understanding on the workings of governing administration. Whatsoever comes about in the judiciary, legislature or the executive will come to that Ministry. I have a fantastic know-how and comprehension of what is expected to be done so that Akwa Ibom Point out can carry on to be on the path of development and development.
I want to say that why I am contesting is that I have the encounter, I have been trained, I am prepared for this management place and you will concur with me that we have to have another person with encounter. If you want to seem at it, competence is critical in leadership, potential is also vital in management, integrity is also vital in leadership. Governor Udom Emmanuel has finished properly, he has embarked on tasks that are legacy jobs and some of these assignments simply cannot be finished in the life of this administration, his successor should be a person who has total knowing of these tasks so that he can continue with them and assure that they are finished and place to use. If you observe, Governor Udom Emmanuel’s developmental concentrate is centered on three gateways, land, h2o and air, and fortunately I am the one particular who by the specific grace of God supervised all the three regions, so I am improved geared up to go on with what Governor Udom Emmanuel has completed so that Akwa Ibom can be what we all want it to be.
Below the administration of Governor Udom Emmanuel a large amount has been finished to develop positions. I believe that we ought to continue on to create positions. We have a good deal of smart and enterprising young guys and ladies and all what they want is an prospect to serve, I will build the necessary alternatives for them.
As a State, we have experienced our fair share of problems arising from inconsistency in policies and jobs implementation and a disconnect between the past and current. An average Akwa Ibom man or woman calls for a conducive environment to functionality, I know this primarily based on what I have observed. I feel I have what it can take to provide that setting.
We will build organization incubation centers to teach and empower youthful persons who have sellable and buyable suggestions – we will connection them with enterprise angels, by that I necessarily mean investors who have money to commit in their corporations- that will support them expand and grow to be sustainable. The Point out requirements the right surroundings for our persons and a whole lot has been done in terms of safety, we imagine that if it carries on in this fashion, we will attain a large amount.

Your previous manager, Governor Emmanuel has anointed anyone as his most well-liked successor. Were being you shocked by the preference?

I was not shocked. You can observe that considering that the Governor manufactured the announcement, you have not read me make any comment. I went about my company and likely to do the job every day and delivering on all the assignments that I was offered. At the acceptable time I had to leave. The rationale for leaving was extremely distinct which is to contest for the governorship in 2023

You are not the Governor’s preferred applicant, really don’t you believe you are swimming in opposition to the tide?

We are all seated below since God has made it doable. God is primary me, I do not see myself swimming against the tide. There is no guy on earth that is led by God that swims versus the tide.


It seems that the Governor was intentional about the ministries he assigned you to head as his particular pal. Why was he not intentional about picking you as his favored successor?

God policies in the affairs of gentlemen, and God’s strategies are various from that of gentlemen. 1 of you questioned if I have consulted the Governor? Certainly, I have. I consulted the Governor on 23rd working day of September, 2021. That is a major day mainly because it is the day of our Point out creation.

What is your partnership like with Governor Udom Emmanuel?

Governor Udom Emmanuel is my pal. This is our 40th 12 months of friendship and absolutely nothing will stand on the way of our marriage. I tendered my resignation on Monday 14th March, 2022, and last Friday we ended up alongside one another, that ought to validate to you that my aspiration are not able to arrive among our connection. The Governor and I are intrigued in the improvement of the State, we are quite passionate about it. I feel we have a extremely robust partnership and very little can occur amongst us.

What shortcomings have you discovered in the Udom Emmanuel’s administration that you would want to right?

There is no human becoming that is best. There is no perfect government, but I believe that the government led by Governor Udom Emmanuel has completed nicely, and like it is often mentioned, authorities is a continuum. A Point out is like a reserve with unique chapters and if you take out five chapters from a e-book with ten chapters that e book can under no circumstances be finish. Each successive administration given that the creation of Akwa Ibom has contributed to the development of the State. Each and every one comes to get in excess of from where by the preceding one particular stopped. I think that whatsoever has been the optimistic things realized by this authorities, it will be the responsibility of the up coming administration to enforce it for the fantastic of Akwa Ibom people and the places you consider are not thoroughly accomplished, we will collectively make modifications due to the fact the State belongs to us we will ensure that we do those people modifications in a way that will be satisfactory to everyone.

On the lookout at the good quality of other aspirants searching for the governorship placement, how do you intend to navigate your way to come to be the future Governor of the condition?

You will be just one of all those who will assist me navigate the way. (Laughs). As my friend, you have a duty to tell Akwa Ibom people today the features of who should really be the upcoming Governor and what is expected of a good Governor. If you can explain to Akwa Ibom folks the large amount you have recognised about my identity, overall performance, ability and working experience, they will make your mind up that Akan Okon is the most effective for them in 2023.

Do you have support from the get together to contest this election?

If you want to see my supporters, you hold out for the day I will declare. You can’t do points the similar way and hope a diverse result. You might be looking at pretty new faces in what we are heading to do, I can assure you that when we are via you will know that a single with God is a vast majority.

What is your take on the agitation by Itu/Ibiono federal constituency that the seat of governor be zoned to the spot in 2023?

I  think in the demand for the governorship by Itu/Ibiono persons I also believe that God is not an creator of confusion, and the purpose for zoning is to lower in-combating. I imagine that in Itu/ibiono federal constituency, we have competent people that can direct this Point out. I assistance that sentiment, but that shouldn’t fully be the yardstick – competence, working experience, ability ought to also be considered apart from zoning.

Are you section of the rising coalition who wishes to halt Governor Emmanuel’s desired successor?

Lifestyle is evolving, we can’t say for guaranteed that there is a coalition. We simply cannot preempt that it will proceed in the exact same manner it used to be. Even so, let’s retain our fingers crossed. Every thing is in the fingers of God.

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