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A/Ibom Arrests 54 Commercial Sex Workers

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Akwa Ibom government has apprehended 54 women suspected to be involved in prostitution in the state as it stepped up its campaign on HIV/AIDS.

The government said that the arrest of the suspects, described as, “spread agents” of the dreaded disease, was part of its effort to lower the rising cases of persons diagnosed with the ailment in the state.

Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Welfare, Mrs Mary Ayewa, told newsmen in Uyo that the suspects were nabbed during a raid organised by the ministry at some “bad spots” in the state capital.

She said that some of the suspected commercial sex workers were caught at the popular Maitama Wimpy Bar at Ewet Housing Estate.

Others, she said, were picked up at Udoetuk Ubo Street, around Oron Road in the metropolis, explaining that the clampdown was to “see if we can talk with them and agree on a better means of livelihood”.

“Actually, the government is worried about its recent rating by the National Action Committee on AIDS (NACA) as the state with the second highest prevalence rate of HIV in the country,’’she stated.

“We are, therefore, resolved and commitment to ridding the state of prostitution as part of the fight against the disease.’’

The permanent secretary wondered why young girls found pleasure in the “dehumanising vocation”.

She said the government and some agencies in the state had mapped out programmes that could engage the women.

“I was very surprised to see that some elderly women were involved in prostitution and I became confused, wondering who, then, should be role models to the young girls if the older ones are involved,’’ she lamented.

She also lamented that only a few women showed interest in the state government’s loan scheme, disbursed through the Ministry of Agriculture, Bureau of Cooperative Development and the Ministry of Women Affairs.

Ayewa said that the ministry was using churches, schools, local governments and other avenues to carry out the campaigns on HIV in the state and called on households to adhere to good moral standards.

She reminded women that their bodies were temples of God, and advised them not to undermine the HIV/AIDS campaign.

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Niger Delta

Gov Eno Flags Off Rural Roads In Akwa Ibom

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In keeping to his campaign promises of connecting different parts of the state by roads, Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Pastor Umo Eno has flagged-off road construction projects to re-connect communities in Obot Akara, Essien Udim and Etim Ekpo local government areas.
The roads flagged – off include 11.71Km Abiakpo Ikot Otu-Atan Ibong-Usaka Annang Road and Nto Ndang-Nto Ekpu road Road, with two bridges, each spanning 15 metres, and 16km Midim Atan-Ikot Inyang-Ikot Akpan Ekpeyong-Etok Uruk Eshiet-Ikot Imonte road, with 30 metres span bridge, linking some villages in Essien Udim and Etim Ekpo Local Government Areas.
Speaking at the flag-off ceremony of the Essien Udim – Etim Ekpo access road at St. Paul’s Primary School Midim, Essien Udim, Governor Umo Eno said his administration is committed to the promise made during his campaign and urged the people to exercise patience as every part of the State will benefit from his administration.
He reaffirmed his commitment to selecting and undertaking projects primarily on the basis of impact and benefits to the generality of the people, rather than satisfying and serving individual’s interest.
Governor Eno noted that he was moved by the sad stories of the community and especially, the “pregnant-women-swallowing-bridge” as was told by one of the community members, and assured that such sad tales will become history within the shortest time.
He stressed that the 16Km Essien Udim-Etim Ekpo road and the bridge projects had no political motivation, but a pointer to his administration’s sensitivity to the plight of the people, especially the women and children who had been exposed to avoidable risk by using the collapsed road and bridge.
According to him, “we didn’t come to do this projects based on political reasons. It is God that directs the government on this road project, not any politician.
“We are connecting two local government areas by this project.
“We want to thank our brother, Celestine Mel who has used his God-given talents to attract this project here.
“If you know this man, he is a critic in every sense, but I don’t have a problem with criticism, so far it’s very constructive and will bring good to the people, not just abusing the government.
“We want to thank you for drawing our attention to this road and to the various accidents and incidents that have occured here. We believe that by the Grace of God, all that will cease,” he said. This road when completed, will connect the people of Essien Udim with their kith and kins in Etim Ekpo Local Government Area.
At the Abiakpo Ikot Otu-Atan Ibong-Usaka Annang Road and Nto Ndang-Nto Ekpu road Road, in Obot Akara Local Government Area, the Governor who was moved by the outpouring of love and gratitude by the people also approved the construction of a model primary healthcare facility to replace the dilapidated Usaka Health Centre project initiated during the military era.
The Village Head, Eteidung Williamson Ndarake, had made a passionate plea to the Governor to intervene on the health facility and his request was instantly granted, with people responding with a roar of gratitude.
In their remarks, the members representing Etim Ekpo/Ika and Essien Udim State Constituencies, Chief Mfon Idung, and Prince Ukpong Akpabio respectively, as well as the transition chairmen of Essien Udim and Etim Ekpo, Dr. Anthony Luke, and Mr. Ekpuk Eshiet as well as a social critic Mr. Celestine Mel, expressed gratitude to the Governor for the heartwarming intervention and assured of their people’s continuous support for full actualisation of the ARISE Agenda.
On his part, the Paramount Ruler of Essien Udim, HRM Obong Cosmas Akpan, also expressed profound gratitude to the Governor and prayed for God’s blessings and guidance to the governor.
At Obot Akara event which was attended by a cross- section of political stakeholders in the local government area, such as a the former Deputy Governor, Senator Chris Ekpenyong, the Commissione

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Niger Delta

Edo APC Youth Leader Apologises Over Vandalisation Of Party Secretariat

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Edo State All Progressives Congress (APC) youth leader, Tony Adun alias Kabaka, has apologised to the party for leading youths and women to vandalise the secretariat after the first primary election on February 17, which threw up three winners.
According to The Tide’s source, the crowd which he led, forced their way into the offices and brought out the furniture, bags of rice and other equipment, vowing to stay at the building for seven days till the state executive council is dissolved.
Adun said they were protesting the conduct of the officials at the primary election, noting that it was obvious the exco worked against the party.
The protest came after the chairman of the Electoral Committee of the primary, Governor Hope Uzodinma announced Dennis Idahosa as the winner, while the returning officer, Stanley Ugboaja, declared Monday Okpebholo as the winner.
Also, Ojo Babatunde, who claimed to be representing the returning officers in all the local government, declared Anamero Dekeri as the winner of the election.
With the confusion, the National Working Committee of the party ordered a rerun on February 22 under the Chairmanship of Governor Bassey Otu of Cross Rivers State, who replaced Uzodimma as the head of the electoral committee for the election.
After the exercise, Okpebholo was declared the winner with 12,433 votes to defeat Idahosa, who scored 6,541 votes.
Adun, in a viral video and a statement on Sunday, apologised to the leaders of the party in the state.
He said, “I, Comrade Tony Kabaka, the state youth leader of the APC, wish to apologise to our leaders, women leaders of our great party and all our youths as regards the conduct of aggrieved APC youths during the party primary which took place on the 17th February 2024.
“The party is supreme, I will work with the party and leaders to ensure that our candidate, Senator Monday Okpebholo, is victorious and I wish to use this medium to congratulate him on his victory at the just concluded party primary.
“I want to urge all youths to embrace peace and let us all work together to make sure we succeed in the general elections come September 2024; I remain a loyal party man.
“I wish to use this opportunity to appeal to our state chairman, Jarret Tenebe, and state secretary, Lawrence Okah, and other members of the state working committee to lead us to rebuild the party and bring all of us together to ensure our party produce the next governor in the elections,” he said.

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Niger Delta

Lawmakers Pass Confidence Vote On LG Boss

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A vote of confidence has been passed on the Chairman of Okpe Local Government Council of Delta State, Chief Isaiah Onoriode Esiovwa by members of the legislative arm.
Majority leader of the legislative arm, Hon Ramsey Daniel Okoro, who moved the motion for the confidence vote during the plenary of the House, said the council chairman has been able to spread development to all the wards in the local government area.
Okoro who represents Ward 17 in the local government area said: “With lean resources being experienced by council chairmen across the Local Government Areas in the country, the chairman of Okpe Local Government Council, Hon Isaiah Esiovwa has been able to achieve so much for the people since he came on board as the council boss and we are impressed with his leadership skills.
“I want to hereby move a vote of confidence on the dynamic chairman of Okpe Local Government Council for carrying everybody along and for his numerous achievements. His types are rare and we have satisfied with his leadership”.
Seconding the motion, Deputy Leader of the House, representing Ward 6, Hon. Kingsley Ese Onojighofia, said, “I want to hereby support the motion moved by our Majority Leader in passing a vote of confidence on the chairman of Okpe Local Government Area, Hon Isaiah Esiovwa.
“He has performed extremely well and we are encouraged by what he has done so far as chairman. He has been able to sustain the cordial relationship between the Executive Arm and the Legislative Arm.
“He is gifted with leadership skills. We want to applaud him for his developmental strides and that is why the entire 20 members of the Legislative House present here today are passing a vote of confidence on the chairman for all he has been doing in the entire local government area”.
The motion was thereafter, put into vote by the Leader of the Legislative Arm of Okpe Local Government Area, Hon. Aragbata P. Obakpororo and it was unanimously adopted.

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