By Darlington UDOBONG
Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State has sympathized with victims of the inferno that engulfed properties in Iwuokpom Community, Ibeno Local Government Area, and assured them of his administration “commitment to support and give a new life to all the people affected by the disaster.”
The Governor, represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem, gave the assurance on Friday when he visited the community to assess the extent of damage done.
While describing the incident as unfortunate, he expressed delight and commended the unity and spontaneity exhibited by the people of the area in containing with the fire outbreak without loss of life.
Addressing the people of the area, Governor Emmanuel said “First of all, I want to thank you so sincerely for the communal spirit, unity and spontaneity that you have exhibited, even without the assistance of fire experts. I commend your effort in ensuring that no life is lost. I want to assure the people of Ibeno of government’s commitment to providing a new life to the people of this community. The rebuilding process will commence as soon as possible. There will be proper planning when rebuilding the affected area. We will ensure the installation of sufficient firefighting equipment and ease of movement in the area.”
He further commended the Commissioner for Special Duties, Rt. Hon. Okpolupm Etteh, for his promptness to the situation and concern for the people, describing him as “a very competent hand in this administration.”
At the Palace of the Paramount Ruler of Ibeno, the Governor assured Owong Effiong Archianga that government will do everything possible to assuage the plight of the people.
The State Governor also informed the people that the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) and other relevant body will be on ground to carry out proper assessment of the situation and recommend lasting solution.
Responding, the Paramount Ruler, Owong Archianga, and the Village Head of Iwuokpom, Chief Okon Akpanowong, thanked the Governor for being the people’s Governor and further appealed that the best should be “done to ameliorate the plight of the people through support, compensation and relief materials.”
The Governor and his team were received and conducted round the site of the incident by the Vice Chairman of Ibeno Local Government Council, Hon. Sunday Isokobo Etor; a former Transition Chairman of the Council, Chief William Mkpa; State Officer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Hon. Ukpong Okon, and Councillors.
Some of the properties affected by the inferno included houses, outboard engines, fishing nets, boats, shops, canoes among others.