Born on June 4, 1966, at Agbokim Waterfalls, Etung Local Government Area of Cross River State, Sen. John Owan-Enoh attended St. Gregory’s Primary School, Agbokim (1972 – 1978), St. Augustine’s Seminary, Ezzamgbo, Abakaliki (1978 – 1983). Thereafter, he gained admission to study sociology in the faculty of social science, University of Calabar. By 1988, he graduated with a B.Sc Hons, Sociology (Second Class Upper). As a result of his outstanding brilliance and scholarship, he won the Best Graduating Student Award, Sociology Department in the class of 1988.
After serving with merit as an Assistant to the Director – General, Government Administration, Governor’s Office, Abeokuta, Ogun State during the compulsory National Youth Service, Sen. John Owan Enoh returned to the academia as Lecturer, Sociology Department, University of Calabar (1991 – 1997). His stint as Lecturer brought into sharp focus the enormous challenges confronting his people, accelerating in him the development of an acute social conscience for service. By 1997, when the General Sani Abacha Political Transition Programme was in full swing, Sen. Enoh’s innate capacity for service was already well horned and found expression during the elections.
Between 1997 – 1998, he was member – elect, Cross River State House of Assembly. However, his election into the Cross River State House of Assembly was truncated by the cancellation of the General Sani Abacha’s programme.
Despite this temporary setback, Sen. John Owan Enoh’s mandate to serve his people was re-validated in a fresh political transition programme during which he scored an electoral landslide under the platform of All Peoples Party (APP). Between 1999 – 2003, he served as minority Leader and Chairman, Committee on Information, Cross River State House of Assembly. By 2003 when the call for higher service beckoned, Sen. Enoh was elected a member of House of Representatives on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party. During his first tour of duty as a Federal Legislator, he was Deputy Chairman, Committee on Culture & Tourism (2003 – 2005); Deputy Chairman, Committee on Appropriation (2005 – 2007). He was active on the floor of the House. Of note, was his brilliant insight on the Fiscal Responsibility Act with emphasis on prompt presentation of Annual budgets within the Medium Term Framework. This feat became one of the highpoints of his tenure as the chairman, House Committee on Finance.
Between 2007 – 2011, Sen. John Owan-Enoh was appointed chairman, Committee on Finance. Under his guidance and leadership, the Committee on Finance conducted an Investigative Hearing on Non remittance of Internally Generated Revenues into the federation Account by government agencies and statutory corporations. As a result of the groundbreaking work of the committee, funds in excess of N400 billion was saved for government by the committee. Given his impressive record in the House and his earned reputation as a worthy representative with a common touch, his people rewarded him with a fresh mandate for a third tenure during the 2011 general elections.
Presently, Sen. John Owan-Enoh is the Chairman, Committee on Finance. He has attended several courses at home and abroad on capacity building in aid of his legislative work including a course in Public Financial Management, Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard University (Executive Education), Telecoms Regulatory Master Class – Bath UK in 2004, Law Making for the Communication Sectors – BMIT, Johannesburg, South Africa in 2004, and Influence and Negotiation, Stanford Graduate School of Business in 2012 amongst others. Sen. Enoh is a fellow, Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, CEPACS, University of Ibadan. He was also listed as one of Nigeria’s 50 most Outstanding Legislative Icons (1999 – 2010) in a definitive book published by Parlia Consult, a Consortium of Legislative Historians. He holds an Msc (Hons) Demography, Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM), and MBA.
After a successful stint in the House of Representatives and having acquitted himself commendably as an embodiment of legislative excellence and indeed one of the most influential voices in the House, he was under enormous pressure to contest for the senatorial seat of Cross River State Central by his numerous supporters beyond his immediate constituency. He contested and won a massive victory in the 2015 elections. He is presently the distinguished Senator representing Cross River Central and Chairman Senate Committee on Finance. Sen. John Owan-Enoh is happily married with children.