Akwa Ibom Ofon-Ama Initiative, a charity/socio-political group, held people in the city of Uyo spellbound, when it marked its fourth anniversary celebration on Friday, 4 December, with the launch of two Dakkada Free Taxis.
Chairman of the occasion, Hon. Joe Itiaba, while delivering his opening remarks, stated that Akwa Ibom Ofon-Ama is the only group that has so far donated free taxi in the state.
The Honourable Commissioner for Finance, Hon. Akan Okon, who graced the occasion, ensured the group that their commitment in controlling traffic in the state cannot be overemphasized, urging them to take advantage of the employment empowerment programmes currently going on in the state.
He donated the sum of N250,000 for the launch of the free taxi scheme and awarded N100,000 to the a member of the organisation, Elizabeth Udofia Udo, for reciting the Dakkada creed.
Hon. Akan also supported the group with the sum of N100,000 to change their uniform and promised to visit them before Christmas.
The National President of Akwa Ibom Ofon Ama, Ambassador Ukai Udeme Emmanuel, in his welcome address, endured members of the group of government empowerment programmes, stating that “Governor Udom Emmanuel has started well and will end better.”
He said that Akwa Ibom Ofon-Ama, in the last four years, has been great, as motions have been set to key into the vision of turning the state into a destination.
“Akwa Ibom Ofon-Ama Initiative has joined hands in chains of love and with a community spirit by seeing the state as one heritage and destiny.
“The organization, in 2012/2013, partnered the Road Safety Corps to sensitise people on the proper road usage. It also partners Ministry of Environment by visiting and cleaning up the State House of Assembly Complex, motor parks and markets in Uyo capital city,” Amb. Ukai stated.
Having seen and believed that education is the bedrock of development, Akwa Ibom Ofon-Ama has, through its programmes, distributed books and uniforms to schools in the state to complement the state government’s free and compulsory education. It has also visited destitute homes with gift items and words of encouragement.
The introduction of voluntary traffic intervention team, according to Amb. Ukai, aims at assisting the State Traffic Warden to control high traffic jams in some major roads in the capital city.
The occasion was also graced by the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor, Mr. Udoka Iyak, who also donated N100,000 to the organization; members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), led by Comrade Edidiongabasi Ekpo Emmanuel, who described Amb. Ukai as the most dynamic youth leader in the state.
Other dignitaries who presented their goodwill messages include Hon. Okon Joshua – Akwa Ibom Ofon-Ama is the only outstanding group in the state; Mrs. Regina Inyang, Mr. Otuekong Edem Ibanga, Vice Presidents, Uyo and Ikot Ekpene Senatorial Districts respectively; and the Patron of the organization, Mr. Udofot Ekpeowo.
The event, which took place at the Christmas Garden by 4-Lane, was thrilled to the satisfaction of the participants through performances from different groups including Esit Ima Cultural Group, Mbopo Cultural Group, VIP Stars and many more.