A special Valedictory Executive Council Session has been held at the Akwa Ibom State Executive Council Chambers to bid farewell to a one-time time Senator of Nigeria’s Second Republic and former Governor of the erstwhile Cross River State, Chief Donald Dick Etiebiet.
In a session presided over by the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, the Governor eulogised Late Chief Don Etiebiet, describing him as an advocate of politics without bitterness as well as an erudite lawyer and a distinguished statesman who traversed the three tiers of government as a Governor , Senator and a member of the National Constitutional Conference.
Governor Emmanuel who spoke in an emotion laddened tone, acknowleged that the state has lost a rare germ who, despite his brief stint as a Governor, had distinguished himself as as a detrabalised Nigerian who rendered selfless service and contributed in no small measure to the development of the erstwhile Cross River State in particular and Nigeria in general.
He noted that the deceased in his three months of stay in office as Governor in the old Cross River State, from October to December 1993, has experienced a dose of the challenge of governance but did not take to heart the manifest flaw of human, instead he dymistified power by placing the interest of the people above himself.
He added that at a time when the murky water of politics was poisoned with vile, Late Chief Etiebiet played politics of friendship across the divide and that with his exit, the state and indeed the family have lost a dependable allay whose replacement would be hard to find and prayed for the repose of his soul.
The Commisioner for Investment, Commerce and Industry, Barister Emmanuel Enoidem, who spoke unbehalf of the Commisioners, described the deceased as a Statesman and a beacon of hope for the hopeless whose bond of friendship spanned the high and the low.
A similar tribute presented by the Dean of Permanent Secretaries, Dr Nestor Udoh, extolled the sterling qualities of Late Chief Donald Etiebiet, noting that his emergence as the first elected Governor from Annang land had changed the course of history by opening the vista and building impetus for other people from the Area to aspire to that exalted office.
He Commended him for his transparency while in office and said that the deceased was not indicted for any wrong doing by the military Government that took over in 1984.
Governor Emmanuel later decorated the gasket with the Nigerian flag as members of the State Executive council filled past as a mark of last respect to the Late Governor Etiebiet. Former Governors including Rtd. Lt Conel Yakubu Bako, Rtd. Group Captain John Ebiye, Otuekong Idongesit Nkanga and other dignitaries attended the session.