By Peter Ogar
Do you need to be a brief case carrier to hold a political office? Must you serve as a councillor or hold any political office to be a good leader or does experience to be governor domiciled in holding a political office?
The answer is no!
Some people just say these things to sooth their selfish tenacity to a political office. They say this to boost their political ego in an attempt to knock credible materials coming from the business world.
Leaders like past presidents of America, Abraham Lincoln, Donald Trump, Governor Ben Ayade, former Governor Donald Duke, Senator Bassey Ewa Heshaw and many others came from the private sector or business world, held political offices and did very well.
So what’s the hue and cry of carrying a political brief case or holding a political office? In fact a successful business man can make a successful leader or administrator.
According to Williams Shakespeare, some leaders are born, some achieve greatness while some others have greatness bestowed upon them. Engr Ben Etim Akak was born great and has achieved greatness through his humble beginning by God’s grace.
Today he has used that humility and humble greatness to touch humanity. Remember the COVID-19 wahala? Akak was there for us. He had the foresight to reach out to his people from Bakassi to Obanliku providing palliatives to the masses as a good leader who has the people at heart. This he did effortlessly with resources from his businesses which he has managed successfully.
Managing a state or holding a political office is like managing a successful business, peaceful and progressive family.
Already through his recent tour of all the 38 industries and projects put in place by Governor Ben Ayade, some foreign investors have indicated interest to buy into some of the industries and make them fully functional money spinners. This is courtesy of Akak’s numerous business connections which he will bring to bear as governor of the state come 2023.
Governance is all about foresight and thinking outside the box instead of waiting for monthly hand outs from the federation account. Akak is the only aspirant in the state who got the foresight and took the initiative using his personal resources to tour Ayade’s projects to prepare his mind on what he will see and do when sworn in and not the other way round waiting to be sworn in before going round with government resources.
Justifying why he embarked on the projects tour, Akak said, “I am inspecting these projects because first I am a Cross Riverian, secondly I am a businessman and thirdly I am interested just like everybody. We need to understand that not everything is about politics, these projects have to continue. From 1999 to 2023 that we will by the grace of God assume position, there are not many continuity projects we can lay our hands on except the ones Ayade have put in place. We want to start that in the Cross River state and show to the world that you can inherit something, consolidate on it and continue from there because all these are cross River state’s money and investment. Again, assessing this thing from outside is different because even if you’re working with him, having an independent assessment is very important as it will build up our capacity in terms of the manifesto we are going to present to the public. It will be a manifesto of a true Cross River state in the future and that’s why we are on this tour. And again, let it be on record that as a private citizen, and as an aspirant running for an election, there is need for us to know what is happening in our state and if you’re desirous of change, you need to know the impact of the kind of change you must bring to bare. If I never toured these projects, there wouldn’t be a company in India that is talking about taking over Calapharm.
“The other aspect is that we are currently talking with private investors who are ready to invest not only in the infrastructure but also in our medical tourism. As we speak, a company has already given us their interest to come in and invest in Calapharm. So the benefit is already here and more benefits are going to come by the grace of God”.
Ben Akak is an employer of labour and manager of human resources with over 700 people in his employ in Bengies Bakeries, High Quality Bakery, just to mention a few which are some of the subsidiaries in his Bengies Group of Companies that. he is currently the Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
Quoting Ekpenyong Isaiah Isa-Baba, “Engr. Akak has also worked and headed different companies and groups such as: Czer Continental Services Limited where he was the Executive Chairman from 2009 to 2015 and during this time he was in charge of LPO Sourcing, Financial and Human Resource Management which included recruitment, employee services and staff related activities to ensure timely and efficient execution of all projects awarded to the company. He was also part of M.O.E Resource Enterprise where he was incharge of General Adminstration/Bussiness Development and later Consultant Oil Palm Development and Marketing for the company”.
So besides his business acumen experience and managerial skill as manager human resources, Ben Akak is eminently qualified by the constitution of Nigeria to contest as the governor of Cross River State or any other office if he so desires.
He holds a B.Sc degree in Petroleum Engineering from the University of Port Harcourt in Rivers State.
With this pedigree and on his own he is doing all these, what will happen if Cross Riverians bestow power on him as the governor of Cross River state? Your guess is as good as mine. A stitch in time saves nine!
Ben2Ben is the right way to go in 2023.
Peter Ogar is a politician and social critic, writes from Calabar