FULL TEXT OF ADDRESS OF HIS EXCELLENCY ENGR.CHIEF DAVID NWEZE UMAHI FNSE, FNATE (AKUBARAOHA) GOVERNOR OF EBONYI STATE TO MARK THE 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE CREATION OF EBONYI STATE, DATED 1ST OCTOBER, 2021
1. My good people of Ebonyi State, I am delighted to congratulate and transmit my best wishes to all the sons and daughters of the State both at home and in diaspora on this historic 25th anniversary of Ebonyi State and 61 years of Independence of Nigeria.
2. 1st October 2021 marks an important milestone in our march towards the attainment of the aspirations of the founding fathers who fought for the creation of Ebonyi State and those who fought for the Independence of Nigeria. While we thank profoundly the founding fathers of our nation, we pay special tribute to the vision, courage and boundless energy of our founding fathers who created the road map towards the statehood that was granted to us on 1st October, 1996 by the former Head of State, General Sani Abacha (may his soul find repose in the Lord, amen).
3. As we commend the efforts of our founding fathers, we thank immensely our past leaders especially the Governors under the Military administrations of Navy Commander Walter Faghabo and AIG Simeon Oduoye (of blessed memory) and the democratically elected administrations of Dr. Sam O. Egwu CON and Chief Martin Nwanchor Elechi MFR, CON for their accomplishments that laid foundation for the progress we have made in the last 6 years and for this we have great testimonies to share as we mark our Silver Jubilee. We can say of a truth that the Silver Jubilee of Ebonyi State is coming at a time tremendous efforts have been made to attain a state of the dreams and aspirations of the founding fathers.
4. Conscious of the promise we made to our people, our Divine Mandate administration has worked hard to resonate our promises in life-changing projects and programmes for the future of our state, including enduring infrastructure for economic development, access to first-class education, affordable health care services, agricultural revolution, efficient and effective public Service and human capital that will transform our economy and bequeath to posterity a grater Ebonyi State.
5. Although our nation has been going through challenges especially the scourge of insecurity that has eaten deep into the fabrics of our economy, we have spared no efforts in rising to the challenge of building firmly and decisively on the achievements made in the last 6 years. We are focused on building an economy driven primarily by private sector, not government. We are deepening the tenets of democracy and the rule of law, we are leading by example in our fight against corruption and waste. We are restructuring the public service and body politic to ensure efficiency and good governance. We are committed to the goal of national integration. We are committed to restoring our time honoured value of hard work, honesty, decency, generosity, dignity of labour, transparency and accountability. I commit myself to this task. We commend the manifest sacrifice made by all government functionaries at different levels of governance in the state and the patience exercised by our people as we strive to give our state a new face in the comity of states.
6. We are satisfied that at 25, Ebonyi State has been made a reference point in terms of network of solid roads, including our ongoing ring road project with ancillary works which are meant to connect 8-Local Government Areas. We have a shopping mall described as the microcosm of macrocosm of the Dubai Mall. We have beaten a record as a state with the highest number of flyovers after Abuja and Lagos. We have activated commercial activities through the construction of Margaret Umahi International Market, the Poultry Market, the Auto Spare Parts Market, Building Material Markets and many markets within the metropolis and satellite towns. We have upgraded our fertilizer blending plant to 80 metric tones capacity per hour to address the fertilizer needs of our people. We have reactivated the state Government’s rice milling plants and installed the parboiling plants to make Ebonyi a State with the biggest rice milling plant in Nigeria. We have a brand new University of Medical Sciences which shall be a centre of excellence for the treatment of terminal diseases and we have plans to start the construction of the University of Aeronautical Engineering and University of Science and technology. We have a virology centre that contains with the menace of lasser fever, the only one in the South East.
7. We have got the industrial clusters in each of the three Senatorial zones that will create opportunities for businesses. We have an emerging airport that will compete with the best airports in Nigeria. We have made efforts to give our state a good look through beautiful roundabouts, water fountains, street lights across the major parts of the state and Local government areas. The light tunnel named after Mr. President is a concept that gives the state a unique identity as a beautiful state. The Ecumenical Centre is a state-of-the-art edifice which hosts spiritual and social corporate events. The new Government House speaks volume of our determination to give our people a sense of self worth among our contemporaries. We have done quite a lot to transform the psyche and social stratum of our people through different human capital development programmes. We are developing estates including King David Estate, City Centre Estate, Salt City Estate, Low Cost Housing Estate and we are encouraging investment in estates by developers to enhance the socio-economic condition of all residents of Ebonyi State .We have created three satellite towns in the State. All these are socio- economic interventions that will create wealth and thousands of jobs for our population.
8. We are committed to providing social amenities including water supply to all parts of the state. We are committed to security of lives and property and fight against all forms of violent activities in the state. We have further fortified our security architecture and enabled our conventional security organizations and Ebubeagu Security outfit to police our communities and ride them of banditry. We have a security viewing centre and CCTV Camera that capture the major junctions of the state to track criminals. You can afford to do your business in the state without fear. We have provided numerous opportunities for the employment and empowerment of our youths and women. Between now and January 2022, we shall be recruiting 5,000 people into the work force and shall be empowimg 3,000 youths and women to go into different businesses.
9. Time will fail me to mention all the modest achievements of our administration. Our mission is that through these numerous life transforming economic facilities, we shall enhance the welfare of our people and empower them to be self reliant and self sufficient. It is true that we have so many projects in our hands to conclude before we bow out, we are committed to ensuring their completion, utilization and sustainability, through private sector initiatives.
10. As a state that is anchored on Divine Mandate platform, we believe that our efforts to solve the socio-economic problems of the state cannot be complete without connecting to God through prayers. We believe that we can only surmount the challenges of insecurity, scourge of Covid-19, economic recession, political dichotomy and other dangerous trends of agitations in Nigeria if we demonstrate a deep sense of patriotism and fear of God in all our dealings.
11. I will continue to be grateful to God for His grace that has led us thus far. My special appreciation goes to my Deputy, the Executive Council members, and all those who worked with me to achieve the result we now celebrate. Let me acknowledge with the deepest appreciation, the State House of Assembly especially the Speaker and the Honourable members who have put in their best to legislatively steer the ship of the state. Worthy of commendation also is the cordiality and harmony that exist among the three arms of government namely the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary and the partnership we enjoy from the Council Chairmen, Coordinators of Development Centres, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and Divine Mandate Pastors. Let me thank the founding fathers, Elders Council, and Traditional Rulers for their prompt and regular regards for their fatherly responsibilities in the stability of the State. I appreciate the cooperation of the Service Chiefs, public and private institutions, Town Union Leaders, governmental and non-governmental organizations, Support groups, Nigeria Labour Congress, Trade Unions, Corporate bodies, other Pressure groups and the entire body of the Civil Servants. Let me specially convey my affectionate considerations to my beautiful wife, Her Excellency, Chief Mrs. Rachel Ogonna Umahi, my children, my brothers and sisters and family members, for their commitment, prayers and support for my cause. My warm regards also goes to our Bishops, South East CAN Chairman, South South Chairman of Traditional Rulers Council and all the stakeholders for their contributions in moving the state forward.
12. At this juncture, let me inform our stakeholders and indeed all Ebonyians that we have intention to dedicate November and December 2021 for the commissioning of our projects and to have our stakeholders and prominent Nigerians visit some of our completed and ongoing projects. We shall also slate a date in November to gather together to celebrate Gods kindness upon the State to mark the Silver Jubilee of Ebonyi State. It promises to be awesome. We will be inviting all institutions and organizations that helped us in one way or the other in the modest achievements of our Divine Mandate administration.
13. I thank you once again for the cooperation, support, solidarity and prayers received by our administration since we came on board. May God continue to bless you and prosper our state.
Thanks and God bless.
*Engr. Chief David Nweze Umahi FNSE, FNATE*
Governor of Ebonyi State