The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Niger Delta Development Commission, (NDDC), Sir (Barr.) Bassey Dan-Abia, said that the interventionist agency would not compromise on quality, stating that NDDC contractors must match or surpass the “uncommon transformation” standards of Governor Godswill Akpabio.
The NDDC Chief Executive Officer was speaking while inspecting on-going projects being executed by the commission in Akwa Ibom State which took him and his team, which included the Representative of Akwa Ibom State on the Governing Board of the NDDC, Engr. Etim Inyang Jnr and the Executive Director Projects, Engr Tuoyo Omatsuli, to several road projects and the hostel project at the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo.
Inspecting the Odoro Atan-Ikot Ekpang-Ikot Inyang Okop-Odoro-Ikot Abiate Road in Mkpat Enin Local Government Area, Sir Dan-Abia urged the contractor to strive for quality and high standards. “The Akwa Ibom standard is high and we want NDDC contractors to keep to that standard. The state government has raised the bar in performance and we expect our contractors to step up to that level.” He said.
He said that it was noteworthy that the road was being constructed by an indigenous contractor and that he had shown sufficient capacity to justify the commission’s confidence on local contractors. He said that being a contractor from the state, he had a higher stake to ensure the success of the project. The road when completed is expected to take traffic off the Eastern Obolo axis direct to the East-West road in Ikot Abasi.
The Managing Director of Benest Technical Services Ltd, the company handling the project, Elder Benjamin Udobia, said that the road had immense benefits for the communities which were largely inaccessible because of the difficult terrain. He said that the company mobilized equipment to the site in September and had so far cleared about 7 kilometres and built 7 boxed culverts.
At the Ikot Akan Mkpat Enin Road, in Ikot Abasi/Mkpat Enin Local Government Area, the NDDC team inspected the emergency repair works and general rehabilitation on 6 kilometres of the major highway. Sir Dan-Abia expressed satisfaction with the performance of the contractor, noting that the road was a major link between Akwa Ibom and Rivers states.
Some members of the communities, who were excited by the emergency repairs, came out with placards expressing their appreciation to the NDDC. One of the placards read: “Thank you NDDC. Please, do more.” A community leader, Chief Joe Edoho, said he was very impressed with what the NDDC was doing for his people. He commended the NDDC for insisting on high quality from its contractors.
The NDDC boss also inspected the 16-kilometer extension of the Uquo Akpantong-Odoronkit-Etebi Road in Esit Eket Local Government Area. He said that the project was very important to the commission, as it would provide access to several riverside communities.
Sir Dan-Abia charged the contractor handling the project to approach the job with all seriousness as the NDDC considered it very critical to the development of the rural villages. He said that the contractor would be given all the necessary support to deliver the project on schedule.