Thursday, 26 June 2014

Ekpe James: Apostle of Exceptional Revolution BY HENSHAW NYONG

In a life of a nation, there comes a time that self-doubt and civilization break down obstructs a nation's progress. Without mincing words, this is the place Nigeria has found herself. Nigeria needs men and women of goodwill and patriots to save the nation from rusting and delving into oblivion.

And here comes the scene a son of the soil, the man of the moment, the Executive Chairman, Ibesikpo Asutan Local Government Council, Apostle Ekpe James; a patriot, philanthropist and statesman who has offered a helping hand in salvaging a grumbling region. Before his ascension to the numero euno position in Ibesikpo Asutan Ekpe, Apostle James, was widely known for his good works, munificence, altruism and helping the poor masses of Ibesikpo Asutan in his own little way.

As a former Secretary, Transition Committee and Chapter Chairman, Peoples' Democratic Party (PDP), Ibesikpo Asutan chapter, Ekpe James made gargantuan sacrifices for his people; elderly, youth, women as well as indigent students. He used his little proceeds then, to better the lot of other people; no wonder he is endeared to all and sundry including the traditional fathers, political class, students, youth groups, market women, to name just a few.

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Church in Philippi encouraging them to give precedence to one another rather than to show 'selfish ambition' or 'vain conceit'. Of course, the aforesaid demystifies Hon. Ekpe James as Apostle Paul said, “we should have the attitude of Jesus Christ. Being in the very nature of God but did not consider equality with God is something to be grasped."  Apostle Ekpe James in spite of the whole heavens and kindness he has shown to his people over the years, has made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.

Those in the know would testify that Apostle James' leadership status is a replica of Apostle Paul's epistle to the congregation in Philippi. Ekpe James is a servant leader who always cares for everyone. He would even displease himself just to please others. At all times he makes himself available to all who comes around to see him and will travel to most interior rural community to see people who are down with one problem or the other. Apostle James' approaches to governance never stop amazing his people. While many political leaders are languishing in mediocrity and coercion, humble Ekpe James has ushered action-oriented and pragmatic governance based on discipline, efficiency and love of the two clans Local Government Area (Ibesikpo and Asutan).

He has placed premium in empowering the needy, the aged, the royal fathers and above all, the famous leaders of tomorrow; the youth. Howbeit, Ekpe James has proved to be a man of impeccable character, a leader of men and an achiever who will rather suffer personal loss of material wealth than allow Ibesikpo Asutan and other local government areas to remain chaotic. Of course, last yuletide shall ad infinitum remains indelible in the minds of all and sundry in Ibesikpo Asutan Ekpe. It was a celebration galore of some sort at the resident of Prince Uwem Ita Etuk, the Political Leader of the area as the council chairman, Apostle Ekpe James doled out N12million worth empowerment, 700bags of rice to his constituents and other mouth-watery donations
The seventy nine beneficiaries, each from the seventy-eight villages of Ibesikpo Asutan comprised market women, various artisans and even members of other political parties, went home with N100, 000.00 each to learn tread or improve on their existing businesses. That's not all; the Council boss must have remembered that the happiest people are not those getting more but those giving more hence, graciously reimbursing every opponent who stood the last local government election with him.

As if that's not enough, on Friday, 30th May, 2014, it was a carnival of some sort at Ikot Ambon Primary School, Ibesikpo Asutan Local Government Area, as who is who in the area in particular and State at large all converge on the football field of the School, for the latest milk of human kindness of the council boss. Nine brand new cars (all 2014 model), one Toyota Hiace bus, over 20 sewing machines, over 20 hair dryers, over 20 family size mattresses, over 20 deep freezers, including physical cash donations to the youth, aged, men and women groups, were evenly distributed to accommodate the entire 79 villages of Ibesikpo Asutan Ekpe.

According to the Ikot Udo Ekop born Executive Chairman, the gesture was to appreciate the confidence reposed on him by the leadership of his party, the Peoples' Democratic Party, as well as the entire electorate of Ibesikpo Asutan. Even Hon Ekpe James himself has confessed; "past years in the council have been demanding but I'm contented because we have done our best as a government to meet up with challenges in education, road grading, youth development, and women empowerment. I am satisfied with the level of success attained so far," he said. 

In one of the many empowerment programmes of Apostle Ekpe James, last year, the Political Leader of the Area, Prince Uwem Ita was touched, hence, he had applauded the Council boss for singling himself out as one of the few individuals to redefine the concept of empowerment of people by way of adopting global best practices in Human Capital Development.

The immediate past Commissioner for Science and Technology, Barr. (Mrs.) Comfort Etuk, amongst other well-meaning sons and daughters of the area, have expressed satisfaction that the Chairman has implemented what he promised during his electioneering. For his immense contribution to Ibesikpo Asutan Local Government Area in particular and Akwa Ibom State at large, Ekpe James has been noticed by both local and national media. 

His popularity, love of his fatherland and fairness has made the once aloof masses into enchanted admirers but it has also brought a lot of ill-feelings from his contemporaries.  For where there was no road, he grade one and where there was no water, he provided drinkable tap water. Where there was anguish, he gave relief funds to the council staff as well as erecting a state of the art Council block with end-suits and also touches the lives of the disabled, less privileged ones and downtrodden

According to the Local Government boss, “there's so much money in government and I cannot afford to eat alone whilst my people are suffering in penury and anguish”

Therefore, the people of Ibesikpo Asutan, Uyo Senatorial District and Akwa Ibom State, have faith that when Apostle Ekpe James soars to the Higher heights, he will give them an overdose milk of humanity couple with effective, effectual and efficacious representation.

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