The Akwa Ibom state Government has charged traditional rulers to help engage their people to stop construction of illegal structures on roads earmarked for construction.
The Honourable Commissioner for Works, Mr. Ephraim Inyang gave this when he led the permanent secretary, Elder Effiong Essien, a team of ministry Staff and newsmen on an inspection tour to 7km Ikot Asukpong road and 15km Ikot Esu-Azumini road in Ika Local Government Area.
Mr Inyangeyen observed that, if village heads, clan heads and Paramount rulers engaged their people on the need not to obstruct development by making haste to erect shanties, tombstones and other structures on roads the government marks to construct, with a view to claiming fraudulent compensation, then it would be easier to achieve wholesome development and deliver dividends of democracy to the people.
The Works Commissioner who decried this anomaly as the major problem the Ministry of works faces in road construction also charged communities to make effort to preserve and prevent vandalization of government investments or infrastructure in their areas, especially when it has to do with street lights and their batteries of cables.
He warned that, communities that continue to demonstrate we-dont-care-attitude to government infrastructure in their localities are going to suffer setbacks as a result of vandalization of those investments, and vowed that the state Government will not hesitate or relent to demolish any such illegal structures without compensation to the perpetrators.
Mr Inyangeyen also toured the ongoing construction of Abak Ifia-Ikpe Mba Eyop-Ikot Abia Osom-Nko road in Obot Akara with spurs in Ikot Ekpene Area, which is handed by Gracid investment Ltd. He told the youths of Obot Akara
that, the road was a fulfillment of the pledge made by Governor Udom Gabriel Emmanuel when he attended a burial in the area and urged them to cooperate with the contractor so that, the road would be delivered on time.
In his reaction to the development, the State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Barr. Uwemedimo Nwoko thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for keeping faith with Ika people by effecting his campaign promises to them to construct the roads. Barr. Nwoko who is a prominent son of Ika, and who was part of the inspection tour observed that, Governor Emmanuel’s determination to have at least two roads constructed in each of the 31 local Government areas as disclosed by his Works counterpart is a welcome development.
The Justice Commissioner described Governor Emmanuel as a focused leader and a true christian with the fear of God whose words are his bond and does not play politics with his statements. While pledging the total support of Ika people for the governor from now till he ends his full tenure in 2023, he assured that Ika people will vote massively to re-elect Governor Emmanuel for a second term in office.
Barr. Nwoko however warned that, building of illegal structures is a criminal offense and vowed to institute criminal action against those who continue in the reprehensible act.