...commends the Armed Forces for their sacrifices

By Ime Silas

Chairman of Etinan Local Government Council, Hon. Uko Umoh has lauded the serving and retired Officers and men of the Nigerian Armed Forces for their sacrifices in securing the territorial integrity as well as keeping the country peaceful and united. 

Hon. Uko who stated this as part of his short remark today, Sunday, January 14, during the Special Thanksgiving Service to mark the 2024 Armed Forces Remembrance Day held at Qua Iboe Church, Efa Town, Etinan LGA, reiterated his commitment to the welfare and well-being of the retired service men and their survivors.

The Council Boss while noting with nostalgia the absence of his late father whom he hinted was a service man, said he derived consolation from his late father’s colleagues who were alive to celebrate the day. He paid tribute to those who paid the Supreme price in defense of the nation.

“I would have been completely happy if as I  stand here, my father was here to see his son standing here as Chairman of Etinan Local Government Council. However, I am consoled that his colleagues are here today to mark this year’s Armed Forces Remembrance Day. My late father was one of you and I was born and bred in the barracks. So I quite understand what you all go through, the sacrifices you made to defend Nigeria’s territorial integrity.

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A good number of your colleagues had to pay the Supreme price for the safety of all of us. Some of you sustained life-threatening injuries, some are facing serious economic difficulties due to various challenges. But just as you have acknowledged my contributions to making this year’s event a success, my administration would continue to do the little we can to assist in your welfare” Hon. Uko assured.

On his leadership, the Etinan Council Chairman continued “Let me also use this occasion to thank His Excellency, Pastor Umo Eno for the opportunity he has given me to serve my people. So far, I am trying my best. My administration is engaging the community youths on the clearing of the Etinan-Uyo Road. Two things would be achieved by this project: firstly, the youths would be engaged and secondly, Etinan would be clean.

Very soon, we will begin grading of Roads across the twelve wards in Etinan and other projects and programmes. I didn’t come to make a long speech today. But one thing I can assure you is that, within a period of one year from today, our people will be proud that they come from Etinan Local Government Area”.

Earlier in his homily, the officiating Minister in charge of the Church, Rev. B. J. Jude, admonished the congregants to imbibe the culture of thanksgiving. The clergy who derived his message from the Bible Book of Numbers 10:9-10 as was read by the Council Chairman, assured Christians that God would always remember them.

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According to the Man of God, “Right from creation, through the days of the Israelites, God has always remembered His own. The only hindrance between man and God is sin. God can never lie. He remembered Noah and Noah was a human like us. God instructed His own to blow the trumpet in the times of tribulations and wars that He would remember them.

Therefore, In times of war, in times tribulations, call on to the Lord and He will remember you. As our country Nigeria is remembering those who fought wars and battles to keep us united, God is going to remember and bless Nigeria”.

Speaking at the event, the member representing Etinan State Constituency at the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly (AKHA), Hon. Uduak Ufot appreciated the Officers and men of the nation’s Armed Forces for their roles in defending democracy, assuring that their labours shall never be in vain.

In his goodwill message, the State Attorney-General and Commissioner For Justice, Barr. Uko Udom, SAN, attributed the uninterrupted democracy being enjoyed in Akwa Ibom State and Nigeria, to the efforts of our Security personnel. He called for support to guarantee their welfare.

Speaking earlier on behalf of the Legioners, Capt. Michael Ukpong (Rtd) thanked God for keeping them alive to witness another Armed Forces Remembrance Day. He appreciated the Council Chairman for his support towards the success of this year’s Armed Forces Day. He called on everyone to always remember the widows and families of their fallen colleagues.

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Highpoint of the occasion was the symbolic launch of the 2024 Armed Forces Emblem and a special thanksgiving for the Supreme Court Victory of Gov. Umo Eno.

Among dignitaries who graced the occasion were the First Lady and wife of the Chairman, Mrs. Emily Uko Umoh; Vice Chairman, Hon. Imaobong Michael; SSAs to the Governor on Media and Project Monitoring, Mr. Anietie Usen and Hon. Udo Jonathan, respectively; PDP State Auditor, Prince Ibanga Udofia; Immediate-past International President of Mboho Mkparawa Ibibio, Akparawa (Obong) Patrick Udofia and a former Chairman of Etinan, Obong Donald Uko.

Others were Council Secretary, Hon. Lawrencia Etuk, SA on Youth to the Chairman and former Legislative Leader, Hon. Item Etuk; former Council Secretary, Hon. Emmanuel Titus and Retired Permanent Secretary, Dr. Cosmas Udofot.

Also in attendance were Head of Service, Mrs. Mercy Ntekim; Chief of Staff to the Chairman, Pastor Ubong Inyang; Honourable Supervisors, PAs to the Governor of Etinan extraction, serving and former political office holders, members of the Nigerian Legion, the clergy, Etinan TRC and a host of others.