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Thursday, 14 August 2014

Ebola: VIPs Disappointed As President Jonathan Refuses To Shake Hands In Akwa Ibom

President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday, August 14, 2014 arrived Uyo, Akwa Ibom state on a one-day official visit for the commissioning and inspection of completed and ongoing projects of governor Godswill Akpabio led administration.

The President arrived the Akwa Ibom Airport at about 11:45am to a crowd of government officials, politicians and well meaning citizens of the state waiting to receive him.
Governor Akpabio and his entourage of commissioners were the only people allowed into the protected enclosure where the Presidential Jet landed.
The Akwa Ibom state Ebola response team where on ground to screen people before they were allowed into the airport. There was no case of Ebola or fever.
As the Presidential Jet landed, the special adviser to the President on media and publicity, Reuben Abati was the first to disembark. He greeted the dignitaries with a fist bump apologising for no giving handshakes as it is expedient to avoid handshakes to prevent the spread of the deadly Ebola Virus.
President Jonathan disembarked from the and greeted all the dignitaries present, including the governor, with a wave of the hand. The VIPs were disappointed as they were expecting the usual handshake.
This visit to Akwa Ibom is the Presidents first outing since the special meeting with all the governors on the Ebola epidemic which held on Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at the Presidentil Villa, Abuja.
The use of hand sanitizers have been encouraged and handshakes discouraged to contain the spread of the virus which has infected 198 people in Nigeria.
During his visit to Akwa Ibom, the President will commission the gas processing facility complete with 69 kilometers pipeline at Uquo, constructed under a public-private partnership arrangement between Septa Energy and the Akwa Ibom State government.
He will also commission the Goodluck Boulevard on Ring Road III in Uyo (Ring Road III).
President Jonathan is also expected to perform the ground-breaking ceremony for a $1.8 billion Methanol Plant at Ibeno; inspect the dualization works on the Uyo-Ikot Ekpene-Aba Federal Road, undertaken by the state government; inspect the first suspended bridge in the State currently under construction in Abak and thereafter inspect the 30,000 capacity Ibom International Stadium, Uyo, for which he laid the foundation stone in October 2012.
It would be recalled that during Mr. Presidents visit to Akwa Ibom in October 2012, he also commissioned the new digital Governors office, alongside other completed projects of the Akpabio administration.
President Jonathan will meet with a cross section of Akwa Ibom people in a banquet, before departing for Abuja.
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