Godwin AJOM, Calabar
The member representing a federal constituency in Cross River State, Akamkpa/Biase, in the house of representative, Ntufam Daniel Effiong Asukwo, has explained the central idea of his campaign for the governorship of the state in 2023.
Daniel, who is also known as Dansuki, a governorship aspirant of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP believes that the state is bankrupt, broke and under siege.
The lawmaker in a chart with newsmen spoke on his intentions to become governor.
According to him, “I think I am not coming to address issues; I think, my government will be looking at how to partner with Cross Riverians to bring about a model, a model that can make us harvest our common investments, that are tied unto the three visions that we already have.
“Both the vision of Donald Duke, Liyel Imoke and the vision of governor Ayade: I believe that Cross River State does not have the financial ability, or resource capacity now to say that we can come in with a new vision; we are going to look at first of all trying to untie the locked up wealth, which we have invested over time in this state.
“Problems are only available when the people say that the problems are there. I think one of the biggest problems we have today in Cross River is that, government has been very far from the people; the people are no longer part and parcel of the conversation.
“For us as partnership, we know that since 1999, Cross River State has been seen as a civil service state; but the world has moved beyond just being a civil servant, the world have gone enterprise, into self-wealth creation.”
He continued that, “we want to move Cross River from being a civil service state, into an enterprising Cross River: in each of Donald Duke, Liyel Imoke and Ayade’s administrations, as much as our administration want to connect with them, we have also identified some factors that are missing, that would have connected us together; even though where we are now after the #ENDSARS, and this present administration, I cannot tell you that there is that amount of continuity; so we might be at the group or zero level right now.
“This our new partnership ways to bring ownership; if I come to your community for instance, and were going to work on that health centre that was abandoned, government doesn’t have the resources to undertake such projects: Cross River State is broke. We are bankrupt as far as am concern, I know the numbers. So if you are to pay pension, gratuity and salaries as at when due, there will be nothing left to even run government itself.
“So we are partnering with the people to build a new consciousness of patience trust and people’s assurance of participation. Look at the work force, there is food on the table, me and my partners, we don’t believe in it; as good as it is, it not the way to go for a state that is looking for an active work force.
“We are going to reengage the youths of Cross River. Thank God by the time this administration will be coming to an end, we will be having 80% of our workforce retired, we will be having that room to bring in new hands. the focus will be building capacity. Our government want to build processing hubs in each of the senatorial districts. Our Government will encourage people to invest in an agronomy economy to fetch raw materials for the industries.”
Daniel added that, “we believe that the rural urban infrastructure needs to be revamped. We are going to have a lot of time, talking to Cross Riverians; in town halls and community meetings. I have been doing Cocoa, I know the cocoa factory that this government is talking about. I know that even on the commissioning tomorrow, it is not 100% complete, that is my line I know what am saying; but he fact that it is even invested into the 8%, 70%, it is a plus for Cross River. That is going to draw FDIs into Cross Rive.
“So our idea is how to use that and crest wealth for Cross Riverians, we are coming with continuity, we are not talking about anything new, purely continuity, anything new will be decided by the people. The revamping of rural urban infrastructure is all on needs basis, to ensure every penny that we ja e now in Cross River is properly utilized and the people live well for it.”
The law maker stressed that, “our government will improve education by introducing technology and sustainable learning, where technical education will be very key. This is because we are going to make our state an industrial processing hub, which will create a value chain, that people are going to do different things for self-reliance economically.
“In the health sector, health is not cheap, I believe in be one to five years free health scheme, I don’t know how that will work with our financial position, but I know it will work. There’s so much in the state to catch up with, just that we have to block up the leakages and we will what we can do in driving our health care system. The health care system will clearly go public private partnership PPP because every government property will be owned by the people.
“Due process will come in fully, I believe in the local government autonomy. I believe in the LGA system, but there must be checks and balances; checks and balances CAB, is having a transparent procurement system, transparent intergovernmental budgeting system, we need that third level of economic activities. right now it doesn’t exist because the state government has absorbed all the activities, at the local government levels; and to get everything to work now in Cross River, as it is now, we are under siege.”
He emphasized that, “in security, the siege is over: we believe that we are going to create a new road map; in the first six months to one year, what Cross Riverians will see, we will put 60%of our energy to security. Because nothing will work when there is no security. Our government will engage in infrastructure, security through continuity and partnerships. These are the things we will focus on and we will have a good prosperous, and secured Cross River State.
“Anybody who is coming to be Governor after Ayade and is thinking of the fun fare of blowing sirens will be stoned out, look #ENDSARS is real. For me eight or four years into the service of the state is giving my life, if I don’t win, I will go to my farm, I have a very large farm. This state needs an apostolic mission to change it.
“As governor, I will give people six months to denounce cultism, after gat whatever acts falls on you, even if you are my mother, or father, you will face it squarely.” He said.