Shinmo News

SPEECH DELIVERED BY HIS EXCELLENCY, THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR OF TARABA STATE, DR. AGBU KEFAS, TO COMMEMORATE THE FIRST 100 DAYS IN OFFICE.

100 DAYS IN OFFICE

Thank you for joining me today as we mark the first 100 days of my tenure as the Governor of Taraba State.

It has been an incredible journey, and I am honoured to stand before you to share our achievements and outline what we still aim to accomplish in the days, months and years ahead.

 

When I took office 100 days ago, I made a commitment to bring positive change, progress, and prosperity to our beloved state. Today, I stand here to report our progress and to set the course for the future. In these first 100 days, we have achieved a significant milestone.

Infrastructure Development
We have initiated key infrastructure projects across the state, with a focus on improving our road networks, health care facilities, and educational institutions.

Progress has been made, but there is more to be done to ensure access to quality services for our citizens. Also in our ongoing journey to re-vitalize Taraba State, I am delighted to share with you our plans for the reopening and upgrading of critical infrastructure, including the Suntai Airport in Jalingo, to meet higher standards of air operations.

The Suntai Airport in Jalingo is a gateway to our state, and its reopening and upgrade are critical for fostering economic growth, tourism, and improved connectivity.

Here’s what we envision:

1. Reopening: We are committed and have reopened Suntai Airport for Domestic Flights as soon as possible. This will not only make travel more convenient for our citizens but also attract investors and boost tourism.

2. Safety and Compliance: The upgrade of the airport will prioritize safety and compliance with international aviation standards. We will invest in modern equipment and facilities to ensure the highest level of safety for passengers and Cargo operations.
Our plan include the expansion of and modernization of the airport’s terminal building, runway, and other critical infrastructure to accommodate larger aircrafts and increase passenger capacity.
We will collaborate with federal aviation authorities, private sector partners and other critical stakeholders to ensure the successful execution of this project.

3. Agricultural Transformation:
Taraba state is blessed with fertile land, and we have taken steps to revitalize our agricultural sector.
We have provided support to farmers and introducing modern farming techniques. However, we acknowledge that there is room for improvement in terms of food security and agricultural productivity.

4. Education and Skill Development:
We have invested in Education and Skill development programs, to empower our youths and equip them for the challenges of the future.

While we have made strides, we understand the need for continued investment fin our educational institutions.

5. Health care Access:
Access to quality health care is a fundamental right, and we have made plans of expanding health care services to reach more communities. Still, we must work harder to ensure that every citizen has access to timely and affordable Health Care.

6. Security:
Our State security remains a priority
We have collaborated with security agencies address security challenges, but there is more work to be done to ensure the safety of our people.

7. Border security strengthening: Our state shares borders with neighboring regions, states and countries Cameroun.
And it is essential that we maintain a secured environment for our citizens
Here’s what we plan to do:

Enhanced Border Surveillance
We will invest in modern surveillance technology and increase the presence of security personnel along our borders and curb illegal activities and ensure the safety of our communities.
Collaborate with security Agencies
We will strengthen our collaboration federal security agencies to ensure a coordinated effort in securing our borders and addressing cross-border
Community Involvement
Engaging local communities in border security efforts is crucial.

We will work closely with community leaders and residents to promote vigilance and report suspicious actions.

At the same time, we recognize the importance of responsible border business practices to foster economic growth and enhance trade.

We plan to:
Establish trade facilitation centers at key border points to streamline the movement of goods and people making it easier for legal trade to flourish.
We will work with relevant agencies to ensure that businesses operating near our borders comply with customs and regulatory requirements. This will help prevent smuggling and illicit trade.

Also investment in border infrastructure, such as roads and checkpoints, will support legal trade and economic activities.

We will prioritize projects that enhance border connectivity.

Furthermore, we will build relationships with neighboring states, regions and countries. We will foster cooperation on cross-border issues, including trade, security, and environmental concerns.

Our vision for Taraba is one of,
Security,
Economic growth
and responsible governance
Strengthening our borders in terms of security and responsible business practices is a vital step in achieving this vision.

Civil Service Reform
Our civil service is the backbone of our government, and critical for the delivery of services to our citizens.

Over the next four years we are committed to a comprehensive civil service reform agenda, which include:

1. Capacity Building: We will invest in training and development programs for our civil servants to enhance their skills, professionalism, an adaptability to modern challenges
Merit-based

2. Recruitment: We will promote a merit-based system for recruitment, ensuring that appointments are made based on competence rather than political affiliations.

3. Transparency and Accountability: We will introduce measures to enhance transparency and accountability within the civil service, making sure that public resources are utilized efficiently.

4. Digitalization: Enhancing technology, we will streamline administrative processes, reduce bureaucracy, and improve service delivery to the public.

PAYMENT OF SALARIES, PENSIONS AND ENTITLEMENTS

I am aware of the challenges faced by our dedicated civil servants and retirees when it comes to the timely payment of their salaries, pensions, and other entitlements. We are taking the following steps to address these issues:
Improved Financial Management: We are working diligently to ensure that our state’s finances are managed prudently, enabling us to meet our salary and pension obligations consistently.

ii. Automation of Payment Systems: We are in the process of automating our payment systems to reduce delay and ensure that salaries and pensions are disbursed promptly.

iii. Transparency in Fund Allocation: We will ensure that funds allocated for salaries and pensions are used exclusively for their intended purposes, preventing any misappropriation or diversion.

iv. Engagement with Stakeholders: We will engage with relevant stakeholders, including unions and pensioners’ associations, to address any concern and ensure a collaborative approach to resolving issues related to payments.
Our commitment to the people of Taraba State remains unwavering.

We are determined to not only address the challenges we face but also to implement reforms that will strengthen our Civil Service and ensure the prompt payment to deserving Civil Servants and retirees.

MINING ACTIVITIES

Developing a responsible mining plan for natural mineral resources with focus on environmental and public health is essential.

Here is a simplified outline:

1. Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA): We will conduct a thorough Environmental Impact Assessment before starting any mining activities. Assess potential environmental risks and plan mitigating measures accordingly.

2. Sustainable Mining Practices: We will implement sustainable mining techniques such as reduced waste generation, efficient water usage, and reclamation of mined areas.

3. Strict Regulations and Compliance: We will adhere to and enforce strict mining regulations that protect the environment and public health. Regularly audit and update these regulations as needed.

4. Community engagement: We will involve local communities in the decision making process and share the benefits of mining through job creation and community development initiatives.

5. Health and safety Measures: We will prioritize the safety and health of mine workers with proper training, safety equipment and access to health care facilities.

6. Water Management: We will implement effective water management to prevent contamination and ensure the responsible use of water resources.

7. Biodiversity Conservation: We will protect and preserve local ecosystem and biodiversity through designed conservation areas and responsible reclamation.

8. Waste Management: We will develop a comprehensive waste management plan, including proper disposal of hazardous materials and recycling where possible.

9. Monitoring and reporting: We will continuously monitor environmental and health impact and transparently report findings to regulatory bodies and the public.

10. Education and Awareness: We will educate employee, local communities and stakeholders about responsible mining.
Now let’s address what we have not achieved in these 100 days:
Our mandate is for four years and while we have made progress, there are challenges that require more time and resources to overcome.

I want to be transparent with you about what remains to be accomplished:

a. Unemployment: Reducing unemployment remains a top priority. We will continue to create job opportunity and attract investment to Taraba State.

b. Rural Development: Many of our rural areas require further development. We will work tirelessly to ensure equitable development across the state.

c. Corruption Eradication: Our fight against corruption is ongoing. We will strengthen anti-corruption measures to ensure transparent governance.

d. Infrastructure Completion: we will expedite the completion of ongoing infrastructure projects to ensure that our citizens benefit fully
In conclusion, I want to assure that you that we are committed to fulfilling the promises we made during the campaigns. Taraba State is on the path to progress, and while we have achieved much in these 100 days, our journey is far from over.

Together, with your support and collaboration, we will build a stronger, more prosperous and inclusive Taraba State.

Thank you, and may God bless Taraba State

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