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Exploring The State Of Akwa Ibom In Nigeria

2643 words - 11 pages

The collective yearnings and expectation of Akwa Ibom people for a State of their own had been long and persistent. Predating the independence of our country, the struggle for geo-political identity for the area and its people had suffered twist and turns along the pathway. But buoyed by the justness of their cause, the people persisted until their erstwhile remote dream became a reality when, on September 23, 1987, Akwa Ibom State came into being as Nigeria’s 21st State out of the former Cross River State.

The people are generally believed to have originated from one ancestral stock, and are made up of three distinct ethnic groups of Ibibio, Annangs and Oro. The State is so blessed that there is no language barrier among them as Ibibio is spoken and understood among all linguistic groups. But officially, English is spoken.

Akwa Ibom people are as industrious and resourceful as they are hospitable. They are predominant farmers. Other traditional occupations of the people are fishing, trading, hunting, wood-carving, raffia works, blacksmithing, pottery, iron works, tailoring, arts and crafts creations.

Akwa Ibom State is a heart-throb of wealth and potentials. It is like a beautiful bride beckoning on tourists, investors in mineral resources and agriculture-based industries. Its weather is clement: warm caress of the 7,245,935 sq. km fertile land mass, luxuriant green all year round. The State’s fond sobriquet: Land of Promise is not misplaced: The land holds promise of exciting people, splendid opportunities for leisure, investment and wealth creation. The hospitable disposition of its population is becoming a national reference point just as its salivating cuisines, exotic culture, arts and crafts have been gathering acceptability, acclaim and desire beyond the Nigerian borders. In fact, nature is lavish in its endowments upon this Nigerian’s South-South fringe.

Sitting astride the seemingly interminable sand bank of the Bight of Bonny, this land of luxuriant green forest with exciting species of games, fascinating people, 2.4 million of them (1991 Census) spread into 31 Local Government Areas, overlooks the Atlantic Ocean which unfolds in delightfully sprawling volume of water seemingly kissing the skyline from flank to flank.

The State is host to Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (Exxon Mobil), which is producing petroleum oil. It is also home of Aluminium Smelter Company, a Paper Mill awaiting resuscitation and catchment neighborhood to Nigeria’s Premier Export Processing Zone. Certainly, its alluring features make the State an emerging inviting destination to all – Tourists and Investors.

Akwa Ibom State occupies a total land mass of 7,245,925 sq. kms. of Nigeria’s wealth basin, the South-South Zone or the Delta Region. Lying between latitudes 4o33’ and 5o33’ North and longitudes 7o35’ and 8o25’ East, Akwa Ibom falls within the tropical zone with a dominant vegetation of green...

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