By Emmanuel Nicholas
Rural areas in Akwa Ibom State play host to more population than Urban Centers, Simultaneously, these areas are the breeding ground of poverty, hunger, and starvation.
And any sensitive Government must ensure the people’s living Standards must be developed and taken out of poverty.
So, to accelerate the process of growth and development of the State, Governor Umo is according to rural development priority, and he has no intention to abandon the Urban centres.
When Pastor Umo Bassey Eno says he wants to focus his development more on the Rural areas, but he will also be advancing development in the Urban centres.
Let’s look at to blueprint for Rural Development as follows:
1. Human Capital Formation-Rural areas lack quality human capital. Therefore, rural development programmes should aim at the development of human resources by investing in education, technical skills development through on-the-job training, and health care.
2. Development of Productive Resources – pastor Umo Bassey Eno knows that Productive resources will help in generating employment opportunities. In rural areas, the main occupation is agriculture which usually suffers from low productivity, lack of infrastructure and disguised unemployment.
Thus, his rural development aims at the development of alternative sources of occupation, while expanding agricultural advancement and providing a good road network to markets, as this will help farmers to sell their produce without delays and loss.
The Governor of Akwa Ibom State is aware that the development of productive resources reduces the excess burden on the agricultural sector, thereby, increasing the productivity and income of the rural people.
3. Development of Rural Infrastructure- Infrastructure development is a very crucial issue at the micro level. It provides a support system to all the production activities in the economy, the absence of which makes economic growth and social development impossible. Development of rural infrastructure includes development of the Good Road network, electricity, healthcare facilities, means of transport, means of irrigation, development of markets, and facilities for agricultural advancement.
4. Pastor Umo Eno wants to reduce poverty in Rural Areas, Poverty is one of the main causes of rural underdevelopment.
Poverty is not a problem in itself; in fact, it gives rise to many other interrelated problems like unemployment, inferior human capital, underdevelopment and backwardness, inequalities, and bad health.
Pastor Umo Eno wants to take an important step that will help in tackling poverty through rural development.
He wishes to develop income-earning assets. Such assets would generate income, raise living standards and make rural people self-sufficient and self-dependent.
The Issue of Abandoning Urban Centers.
In many fora, people have raised some questions about Governor Umo Bassey Eno has intention to abandon development in the Urban centres. The answer is no.
When he mentioned in his ARISE AGENDA about maintenance and advancement of infrastructural development, the Urban centres are included in this level of development.
A caller in the Community programme on Planet FM aired his mind on the roads that have been abandoned in Uyo Metropolis by the present administration.
I want to inform Akwa Ibom people that Pastor Umo Eno will not abandon any road project in the Urban centres, most of the ongoing Roads in Uyo city are at the level of earthworks and asphalt and this cannot be done during the rainy season.
As the dry season has set in already, the Governor of Akwa Ibom State has promised to release funds to the Ministry for works to mobilise Contractors back to the site.
So the fear of Urban dwellers thinking they will be abandoned for Rural Development is not a Statement of fact.
The Governor of Akwa Ibom State is a sensitive leader who will not abandon any part of Akwa Ibom State in his development.