JOE EFFIONG, UYO

The chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Judiciary, Mr Onofiok Luke, has lamented the opacity inherent in the current leadership of Akwa Ibom State which has made governance face many challenges such as lack of public trust in the officials and institutions of government.

Luke who is a leading governorship aspirant on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) said lack of transparency, accountable and all-inclusive systems in government as well as loosely managed relationships with state stakeholders in the diaspora have culminated in serious challenges against the present administration in the state.

To get out of the trust quagmire, the governorship aspirant said  the state should institute a collaborative management of public life performance by both the state and the citizens through a new relationship between the political state and civil society.

Luke who is the immediate past speaker of the state house of assembly, promised in his Goal 9 – Good Governance and Administration – to institutionalize accountability through compliance with the provisions of the state’s fiscal responsibility law, public procurement law and other public financial regulations in the management of public finances, as well as faithfully apply sanctions for non-compliance.

He said his administration would undertake budgetary reform and institute an annual public expenditure framework that would link the budget to job creation and poverty alleviation.

In order to tackle high cost of governance, the aspirant promised to “ensure the reduction of overheads and waste, raise capital expenditure and observe budgetary discipline with independent annual audit of the state  and local governments; engage the traditional institutions and other community stakeholders in decision making and policy implementation; plug revenue leakages and improve on the generation of internal revenues in the state and local governments.”

The politician said he intends to support the growth of digital and non-digital radio services and infrastructure by refraining from political interference and recognizing the importance of  a free and vigorous press as part of  the democratic process.

“We will take a bi-partisan approach to development by leveraging the human resource capital of the state regardless of political affiliation; set up a state economic management team which will advise on economic policy matters, including fiscal analysis, economic growth and a range of internal/global issues working with relevant cabinet members.”

He however said his administration would “strengthen our great party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) by creating opportunities for our party men and women who laboured for our victory to be adequately compensated.”

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Source: news