Prince Akpabio: A Peerless Hand For The Investment, Commerce And Industry Ministry
I am someone who always like to see a person, a people or a community achieve success through positive policies and programmes. I am also someone who also refuses to identify with failure either by design or error.
Akwa Ibom Ministry of Commerce and Investment is one of the sensitive ministries in the state, and it is one ministry that serves as an engine room to the success of any government.
At first, it was called the Ministry of Commerce and Industry but later changed to Ministry of Investment, Commerce and Industry by the wisdom of Akwa Ibom governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel, knowing that commerce is relative to investment and industry.
After the new acronym, late Professor Eno Blankson Ikpe (may her soul rest in peace) was appointed the commissioner to man the affairs of the ministry but her demise paved the way for the appointment of a man whose performance would be an exception.
He is a people’s benefactor, transparent and true democrat born into the great Akpabio family in Essien Udim Local Government of Akwa Ibom in Nigeria. Though his birth did not herald any historic event but integral to his destiny’s weaving were traits in sync with American philosopher and educator, Martimer J. Adler’s assessment in Aristotelian terms of the good leader who he says has the ethos, pathos and logos.
The ethos is the moral character, the source of his ability to persuade, and the pathos is the ability to touch feelings, to move people emotionally; while logos is the ability to give solid reasons for action to move people intellectually.
A graduate of Law, Prince Ukpong Akpabio’s self-evidence so far in his political domain is a rare power of persuasion. His ability to touch feelings is pervasive and his capacity to give people motive for action is overwhelming. This combination of leadership ideals in the personality of Prince Akpabio, a resourceful and vibrant Akwa Ibom man endeared him to Governor Udom Emmanuel who against everything appointed him the commissioner for investment, commerce and industry in 2018 in AkwaAbasi Ibom State.
A state blessed with mineral resources, Akwa Ibom on the return of democracy in Nigeria had a technocrat as a governor in the person of Obong Victor Attah. He served the state from 1999 till 2007. Obong Attah had good plans for the industrialization of the state but due to precipitous decline in the state’s economy, he could not meet his target. And that urged him to demand for 13 per cent oil derivation and resource control.
Though he succeeded in the fight for the 13 per cent oil derivation, he did not receive a kobo from it but was able to lay a good and fruitful foundation for his successor, Obong Godswil Akpabio.
Akpabio assumed office as the governor of Akwa Ibom on May 29, 2007 with full payment of 13 per cent derivation of onshore/offshore oil dichotomy. In his wisdom, Akpabio understood that no development could thrive where there were no good road network. So with the exception of the free and compulsory education, he embarrassed the state with standard road network including overhead bridges and flyovers in the state capital which have made the state a reference point among comity of states in the South South geopolitical zone.
His investments in infrastructure for eight years since assumption of office in 2007 to 2015 indeed paved the way for his successor, Mr Udom Emmanuel, on the path of industrialization which is the present administration’s watchword.
Governor Udom Emmanuel took over the mantle of leadership in 2015, which to me, his emergence as the governor was another ship of divine destiny that berthed for Akwa Ibom and its people.
After Emmanuel’s three years in office, he saw that there was need for his government to improve on his industrialization policy by appointing a more competent person, hence the appointment of the present commissioner for investment, commerce and industry, Prince Akpabio, who came with the intention to make the difference which truly he has made. Prince Akpabio’s appointment as commissioner for investment, commerce and industry was indeed a call to steer the boat of Akwa Ibom for a greater future through establishment of industries which indeed have been achieved through programmes and policies.
His appointment as commissioner into such a sensitive ministry that sails the ship of development of the state which is all about investment and industrialization created postulations from numerous admirers with congratulatory messages.
Within his four years, the state has invested so much in core profit-spinning and lucrative businesses such as the rice plantation, the coconut plantation and its processing refinery, the cassava plantation, the toothpick, the syringe and the pencil factories, the poultry farm, as well as the metering company commissioned by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. The Ibom Air which has made the state stand tall in aviation industry of the nation is a big kudos.
These and many more have gone a long way to complement the word of MacJohnson who says “Never limit yourself because of your own limited limitation.” The present administration with a competent commissioner for investment and industry, Akpabio, does not limit the state’s investment and industrialization because of cash limitation in the country – the coconut refinery, the Green Well Technology, Akwa Prime Hatchery and others are echoes from the state investment.
It is worthy of note that all these achievements are triggered by genuine commitment to serve the state and its people. Indeed he has redeployed all measures that transcend to realizing the efficiency of the Ministry of Investment, Commerce and Industry.
As a dependable steward, his effectiveness and positive impact as the commissioner has really changed the ministry into a true mechanism instrumental for investment and industrialization.
And facts have not raised any doubt that the effectiveness of the Investment, Commerce and Industry Ministry is really a turning point for Akwa Ibom industrialization success; and this he has done without leaps of limitations. Sail on Sir.