Gov. Udom Emmanuel’s Two Years of Road Revolution in Akwa Ibom State
May 25, 2017

Gov. Udom Emmanuel’s Two Years of Road Revolution in Akwa Ibom State

By Otobong Nsekpong –

From the blast of the whistle on May 29, 2015 when he was sworn in as the fourth democratically elected governor of Akwa Ibom state, Governor Udom Emmanuel has proven many that he came prepared to consolidate on the gains recorded by past administrations especially in the area of road construction.

Having gone round the entire state during electioneering, bearing in mind the pivotal role motor able roads play in the industrialization of any society, Governor Udom Emmanuel wasted no time as he swung into action, awarding contracts for immediate intervention in some deplorable roads in the State.

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So far in the last one year, contract papers have been signed with different construction companies both indigenous and foreign for the construction of over 150km of roads across the three senatorial districts in the state. From Urban roads in Oron, Uyo and the remodeling of some roads and strategic roundabouts in Eket, the governor has kept faith with his campaign promises to the people.

In Oron Local Government Area, about six urban roads have been completed by the administration in the last one year. The roads include Mainland Avenue, Bassey Lane, Effiat Lane, Agric Lane, Awana Esin Lane and post Office road among others that are still under construction.

In ONNA Local Government Area, the Awa Iman- Ikot Nkang Road is also ready for commissioning just as Mkpok-Okat Road still in ONNA has also been completed by this government in the last one year. This is beside the ongoing construction of Etinan- Ndon Eyo Road that starts from Ikot Oku Junction in Uyo Local Government Area and passes through Etinan all the way to the East West Road which cut across the entire Akwa Ibom South Senatorial District.

The remodeling of selected roads and strategic roundabouts in Eket will be a beauty to behold upon completion. The remodeling contract handled by Nigerpet when completed according to the General Manager of the construction firm, Muyeed Ahmed Madud, will make Uyo and other towns green with envy.

The Commissioner for Works, Akparawa Ephraim Inyang-eyen who conducted some journalists round the project pointed out that, the Eket remodeling project is done in such a manner that flood control is taken into consideration from the very beginning to avoid the same problem faced by Uyo residents in the future.

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The ongoing construction of Eket –Ibeno Road is another plus for the administration. It has remained a puzzle to many why the 19.5km economically viable road should been so neglected by successive administrations in the state. Such questions like; did the State government deliberately abandon the road because it leads to the operational base of Exxon Mobil? Or was it because there was no governor that emerged from the area in the last 16 years? Why didn’t Exoon Mobil construct this road as part of their corporate social responsibility?

However, with the victory of Mr. Udom Emmanuel in the April 11 governorship election many had course to celebrate especially motorists and indigenes of Eket Federal Constituency who have been subjected to pains as a result of the deplorable road. Shortly after being sworn in he visited the road and the decayed state of the road broke his heart as he immediately renewed contract with Chines Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) who were awarded the contract by the immediate past administration. Today, CCECC with prompt funding by the government has exceeded the expectations of government as they are set to deliver before time.

Nsit Atai Local Government Area is also accommodated in the ongoing road revolution as the 6km Idiaba- Nda Nsit- Nung Udoe road construction awarded to COSSEL Construction Company early in year has gone beyond 60%. The contractor who was given 18 month time frame has promised to deliver the road before the eighteen months elapsed.

Like the Idiaba – Nda Nsit- Nung Udoe, the 5km Ikot Usop- Ikot Edeghe-Ikot Ekpuk Road which cuts across Ikot Abasi and Mkpat Enin Local Government Areas handled by Benest Technical Services will be completed by September.

In Uyo, work has reached advanced stage in the ongoing construction of Ring Road 111 outfall drains from Nsikak Eduak Avenue up to the Tropicana just as construction is ongoing at the speed of light in the 6.1km Atan Offot Road while the 1km Information Drive has been completed and will be commissioned as part of activities to mark the first year anniversary of the administration of Governor Udom Emmanuel.

There are some striking facts about the ongoing road construction in the state. The first is that all contractors execute their contracts according to specifications one of such is the provision of drainage system. This is a departure from the past and a clear indication of the government’s readiness not to compromise quality with any form of political considerations.

The second fact is that though the governor did not make it an issue during his campaign, he has engaged indigenous contractors in the massive road construction going on in the state. In response to the commitment shown by the contractor handling Idiaba – Nda Nsit- Nung Udoe, the Commissioner for Works, Akparawa Ephraim Inyang-eyen had this to say about indigenous contractors; “Those who truly want to support government get things done will do so without complaining of paucity of funds, the contractor is determined to support the government and has done this much, even if you feed a child or over feed a child, the one that does not want to grow will not grow, that is what we find with some contractors, they must have an excuse”.

So far, the administration has shown confidence in the prowess of indigenous contractors and they have sustained the confidence with timely completion of contracts and execution according to specification. It is certain that by the support from indigenous contractors and others handling government projects, the vision of Governor Udom Emmanuel to open up areas hitherto inaccessible for the promotion of social interactions and economic activities will be realized.

Akparawa Ephraim Inyangeyen, Commissioner for Works, Akwa Ibom State

The Commissioner for Works deserves special commendation for keeping contractors on their toes through prompt and timely visit to sites to ensure that they deliver on time and according to specifications. This approach if sustained will at the end of the day, deliver tangible democratic dividends for the benefit of the people.