It was a fact-speaks-for-itself and mind-blowing experience when the Akan Okon-led Ministry of Housing and Special Duties took journalists and the Akwa Ibom Project Team on a tour of special project sites in the state on Thursday, December 28, 2017.
At the State Secretariat, where the tour started, the Commissioner for Housing and Special Duties took journalists and Akwa Ibom Project Team to the completed beautification work and construction of Internal Roads at the Secretariat Complex.
The Team was also amazed by the display of gratitude by civil servants at the Secretariat Complex. Speaking, the Youth Leader of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Akwa Ibom State Council, Comrade Joseph John, said the administration has been closer to the people through its people-oriented projects and compliance to issues of workers welfare. Like Oliver Twist, he said, though the workers are very grateful to Governor Udom Emmanuel’s magnanimity towards them, they will not stop asking for more.
At the Ibom International Airport, the Team members were conducted round the Ultra-Modern Commercial Building, the Terminal Building, the Sub-Power Station and ongoing Taxi-Way, which stretches to 3.6Km and 60metres in width. It was also interesting to hear from the Commissioner that the Taxi-Way can comfortably serve as a second Runway for aircraft in the event of maintenance on the main runway. In the Arrival section of the Administrative Block, an extension that accommodated two restrooms was also noticed.
Mr. Okon, who was accompanied by the Airport Manager, Mr. Uwem Ekanem, also informed the Team that, like the Sub-Power Station that will give the Airport all-round the clock power supply, modalities have been put in place to enable investors take advantage of the Maintenance, Repairs and Overhaul (MRO) facility of the Ibom International Airport.
When asked why some special projects of the previous administration, particularly the Four-Point by Sheraton, were not operational, the Commissioner explained that the inability of the Four-Point by Sheraton to startup was due to acquisition of the managing firm, Starwood Group, by the Marriott Group. He assured that the hotel would be fully operational as soon as the administrative bottleneck is settled.
At the site of the proposed 21-Storey Building Complex, Mr. Okon enumerated the prospects of the structure to include office accommodation for business concerns as the ongoing industrialization programme of government gathers wave.
The tour ended with a live streaming and Tweet session via #Akiptweetmeet where questions concerning the Ibom Deap Seaport projects, Ibom Tropicana and sundry were satisfactorily answered by the Commissioner.