Governor Udom Emmanuel wants the post–COVID-19 economic crack team to develop conflict sensitive policies that will lead to identifying low hanging fruits, stability and prosperity for all and hand over an actionable programme to him in one month.
The 20-member Post-COVID-19 Economic Reconstruction Committee having Prof. Akpan H. Ekpo, the former Director-General of West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management as its chairman, was officially named on Wednesday, April 28 in a statement signed by Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem, the Secretary to the State Government.
Emmanuel who inaugurated the committee at the Banquet Hall, Government House, Uyo on Friday, also charged the members to bring their expertise to bear in harnessing resources towards reconstructing the economy which has been affected by the outbreak of the pandemic.
The governor further tasked the committee to innovate ways of harnessing the resources in the face of the global economic crises and design a workable formula towards restoring basic livelihood even if only at subsistent level.
“Make recommendation for a strong social re-orientation programme for the citizens of Akwa Ibom State across board, thus the need to unlearn old mindset, adopt new ones and see the value of life beyond what others see.
“Guide the state government in the formulation of policy framework necessary to create a viable economy post COVID-19.
“Identify and explore ways and means of sourcing funds and attracting investment partners with comfortable terms with locally, nationally and internationally in realization of every identifiable revenue generating project, this should also involve the redesign of policies targeting at attracting technical assistance including bilateral and multilateral donors plus Foreign Direct Investment FDI.
“Establish the interconnectedness apart from the one providing input materials from one to another in the value chain of each of the projects.
“Develop a priority list of economic reconstruction projects then establish a sequence of prerequisite best order of implementation segmented in series and parallels indicate the duration of each segment.
“State measurable sources indicators of a sustainable socio-economic growth and development of Akwa Ibom State with little or no revenue from oil,” he charged.
The governor said, “Whoever expects that life will ever be the same after COVID-19, that person is yet to understand how things work globally. Life across the globe will never be the same. So what do we do? How do we navigate our way as a state?”
According to him, “We cannot fold our arms and allow situations to sweep us away not at all. This is the time for us to make a move. This is the time for us to go back and re-appraise, re-assess believing that man has been created by God that what you have is all that you need even at times like this.”
“COVID-19 pandemic has caused a whole lot of crisis in the entire global economy. Today, we are here to pose two questions to these intelligent and capacity laden members of this committee, the two areas they will address to us is the what and how to get out of this situation,” he stated.
The committee chairman, Akpan Ekpo thanked Governor Emmanuel for the confidence reposed on them, and pledged to offer the best in the interest of Akwa Ibom people and the government.