By Osondu Ahirika
The member representing Ibiono Ibom state Constituency, in the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Barrister Ime Okon has showered encomiums on the state governor, Mr Udom Gabriel Emmanuel maintaining that, he(Gov. Emmanuel) has justified the mandate Akwa Ibom people overwhelmingly gave him to be their leader.
Barr. Okon made the submission while interacting with newsmen after the inspection tour of the 27.2km Etinan-Ndon Eyo dual carriage way with spurs, and the nearly completed Eket-Ibeno road dualization project by the Rt. Hon. Usoro Akpanusoh led House Committee on Finance and Appropriation.
The Lawmaker who was deeply impressed by the quantum and quality of work done on the inspected roads which also included the Eket Urban roads remodelling as well as the Eket -Etinan dual carriage way with three bridges, opined that, Akwa Ibom people got it right when they voted Mr Emmanuel to be their governor and that choice has turned out to be vindicated.
Barr. Okon observed that, Governor Emmanuel has silenced cynics by embarking on such massive and coist intensive road projects across all parts of the state, in the face of biting economic recession and sharp decline in the revenue allocation of the state, arguing that, it takes a lot of ingenuity and innovativeness to achieve that feat as no other state in the nation can in the current circumstance boast the same measure of road projects like Akwa Ibom State.
He accordingly charged the good people of the state to support the governor as the excellent road network will be a perfect compliment and springboard for the industrialization agenda to succeed.
Conducting the Finance and Appropriation Committee round the projects, the Honourable Commissioner for works, Mr Ephraim Inyangeyen, explained that, Governor Emmanuel has placed premium on road networking to ensure that all parts of the state are linked together.
Commissioner inyangeyen however regretted that, shortfall in funds to pay huge compensation liabilities for property affected by the massive road development projects has stalled work in parts of that are urbanized, especially in Eket town, while slight variations following redesigning of portions of the road are still awaiting approval. The works helmsman assured that, once approval is given and providing the availability of funds, the projects will be executed with speed and strict compliance to quality.
Commissioner Inyangeyen who revealed that a cable bridge, first of its kind in Nigeria spanning 90 metres is part of the 27.2km Etinan-Ndon Eyo Road, complete with solar paneled median lights, and when completed, will be a marvel to behold.
The works Commissioner therefore appealed to the House Committee on Finance and Appropriation members to
favourably consider and make commensurate allocation to the ministry to facilitate the completion of the projects, assuring them that, the votes will be prudently utilized.
In his remarks, the Chairman of the Finance and Appropriation Committee expressed satisfaction with the performance of the Ephraim Inyaneyen led Ministry of Works and described the commissioner as a workaholic who is focused and passionate about service delivery to the state.
Hon. Akpanusoh stated that, the House Committee decided to inspect the projects as part of its oversight function to evaluate how well the 2016 appropriation for the Ministry of Works was implemented, so as to be well informed and guided in dealing with the 2017 appropriation bill currently before the House.
The Committee Chair who represents Esit Eket State Constituency commended the Chinese Civil Engineering Company, CCEC, who are the major contractors handling the dualization projects for a job well done and for exceeding the amount of contract sum already released to them measure against the rate of work done.
Hon. Akpanusoh praised Governor Udom Emmanuel for spreading road projects to all parts of the state, noting that, the roads traverse one local government to another and thereby touches every segment of the state.
He said the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly is impressed by the performance of the works ministry and will take every necessary and legitimate step to support the Ministry meet her obligations.
While charging the people of the state to keep supporting the Udom led PDP administration in the state, Hon. Akpanusoh harped that, Akwa Ibom is a shining example in road infrastructure revolution in the country which all other states can learn from, and said PDP has not and will never fail the people who have believed in the party since the return of democracy in May 1999.