The Central Planning Committee (CPC) of the Cross River State Youth Economic Summit, have presented an Outstanding Achievement award to the Executive Chairman, State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Dr Stephen Odey, and appointed him as their patron.
The award which was presented during a courtesy visit paid on him by members of the committee was in recognition of his outstanding contribution to youth development, socioeconomic advancement, leadership, and personal sacrifices to the service of humanity in the State and the Nation.
Speaking during the event, the CPC Chairman, Amb. Benard Oko said the award was in appreciation of Dr Odey’s service to the state, particularly in the Basic Education Sector.
“We are here to appreciate you as an icon, someone who has distinguished himself in service to humans in general, specifically to SUBEB. We know that a lot of organisations have been here doing same, it is not because people like singing your praises but it is because of the foot print you have left even when you are still in Office. In our popular youth parlance those who have done well we refer to them as living ancestors, and by all calculations, from your performance and the capacity you have shown in this office you are indeed a living ancestor in public service,” he said.
Oko informed that the committee objective is to uplift the economic level of the youths in the State through the Cross River Youth Economic Summit and key into the Industrialization drive of the present administration.
In his words “We are pained when we look around and see our youth wallowing in abject poverty, even those who are graduates cannot get something to do to earn a living. The idea of this summit is simply for service, simply to engage our youths, engage our youths in economic ventures that this state has not taken the initiative to do before and we thought it wise to hit the ground running by organising the first economic summit in Cross River State. This venture of ours will compliment the very vibrant activities of the government of the day, His Excellency the Governor, Prof Ben Ayade has done us proud, we are proud of him because his focus is to industrialise the state and improve our economy.
Programme Coordinator Amb. Jerry Odey said the decision to make Dr Odey patron of the event was based on his stellar qualities.
“Our visit to you today is because you have become a personality in the society that is worthy to be aligned with, and as young people coming together with a lofty idea on how to revive the economy of the youths of Cross River State, we cannot but identify with you for guidance, support, and direction. The person we are identifying with today is indeed a man of outstanding qualities, there has never been anyone more celebrated on social media when it comes to efficiency, proactiveness, and discipline in the service. We have come here today as members of this committee to appreciate you and to clothe you as one of our patrons that will guide us through this activity.“
Responding, the Executive Chairman, State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Dr. Stephen Odey, expressed gratitude to the forum for the honour, describing it as a privilege. He further assured of his support in ensuring that the event becomes a success.
He said what drives him to succeed is his determination to achieve success, as well as supporting Governor Ben Ayade to achieve his dream for the State.
Dr Odey stated that the role of Youths in the development of a society cannot be overemphasized. “Youths have a lot of roles to play in other to take us to the next level, we can’t just fold our hands and I am happy that you are coming up with this kind of summit, where you have to sit down together and discuss some issues that will make us grow. Youths generally are very important to any society, without us the society will crumble, “he stated.
While calling on youths to support Governor Ben Ayade, Dr Odey said the building of the British Canadian International School and the payment/ regularisation of about 433 Water Board Contract staff is proof of Governor Ayade’s passion and love for youths.
According to him “I came on a rescue mission with the mandate given to me by the Governor to improve on the standard of basic education to ensure a bright future for our children. This has led to the building of a world class secondary school, British Canadian international school, if you take time to visit that school, you will know that we are preparing the youths for the future,” he stated.
He continued “when I was asked to oversee Water Board as the Acting M.D, I got there and discovered that over 500 youths were languishing in a very terrible situation, I quickly drew the attention of his Excellency and I can proudly tell you that I secured approval from his Excellency for the regularisation of about 433 of them. So within one month Ayade has employed 433 youths with pensionable jobs, no other administration can do this and that is why I urge everyone to continue to support Governor Ayade. A man that has brought so much to Cross River state and a man that is still prepared to do more, give him 8 years and you will see what he will do in this state,” he emphasized.