President Goodluck Jonathan and the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Godswill Akpabio are scheduled to address the event to mark the kick-off ceremony and business forum of Nigeria’s centenary celebration at Park Lane, London.
Facilitator of Nigeria’s centenary celebration and Executive Director of Dabbs International Nigeria Ltd., Mr. Emmanuel Minimah made this known when he, along with the Minister of Culture and Tourism, Chief Edem Duke, paid a courtesy visit to Governor Akpabio in Abuja.
The duo also disclosed that Akwa Ibom State has been selected as the Face of Nigeria’s centenary because of its historical significance as the place where the signing of the amalgamation treaty by Sir Lord Lugard in the present-day Ikot Abasi, in the South-south state took place.
In his response, Gov. Akpabio said the choice of Akwa Ibom as the face of Nigeria’s centenary celebration and key contributor to all the events taking place in London, would place Nigeria in the right historical perspective.
He added that the event would afford Nigeria the opportunity to invite those in diaspora to visit the Centenary House where the Southern and Northern protectorates were amalgamated in Ikot Abasi.
An elated Akpabio expressed optimism that the initiative would go a long way in showcasing some of the cultural monuments in the state like Mary Slessor Hall and “Bridge of no Return” – where many Africans were sold into slavery.
“This is history rewritten. For the first time on behalf of the people of Akwa Ibom State, I now know that truly, Nigeria is interested in keeping the right history. We had missed as Nigeria, the aspect of telling others the truth”, he said.
He stated that even from the diaspora, hundreds of visitors came to the state to take pictures in the cultural monument as prelude to the celebration and said some wanted to see where Mary Slessor abolished the killing of twins in the whole of West Africa.
Akpabio, who also doubles as the Chairman of PDP Governors’ Forum, congratulated President Jonathan for being the leader at the helm of affairs in the country when the centenary celebration will take place and pledged to partner the Federal Ministry of Tourism, Culture and National Orientation to ensure a hitch-free celebration.
AKWA IBOM DESERVES TO IMERGE D FACE OF CENTENARY