As part of his drive to industrialize Akwa Ibom and create business opportunities, the state government has reached an agreement with some private developers for the commencement of an industrial park and jetty project in the Ikot Abasi area of the state.
Governor Udom Emmanuel who headed the government delegation assured the contractors 3W Alliance (Ltd) and allied partners that his administration will do everything possible to support the speedy completion of the project which spans five local government areas.
He maintained that, he has put in place a structured transaction process that will ensure that the project is sustained beyond the lifespan of his government, saying “the business is structured to survive no matter who is in the saddle tomorrow.”
Stating that natural resources are useless if not properly harnessed into effective productivity, Governor Emmanuel affirmed that he has extracted support for the project from the host communities.
“I had series of meetings with the communities and I told them the water was there all along and no meaningful wealth came out of it.
Today we want to turn that water into wealth and I have sued for peace and support from them.”
Governor who joked that water can only be transformed into wine, depending on who is conducting the prayers, said he has reached an understanding for an harmonious relationship between the developers and the host communities.
“Before all of us were born the water was there and it was not yielding dollars to the people, today we want to drive that water to become wealth, and we deserve all the support and cooperation of the public.”
He said the success of businesses depended on reliable infrastructure, security and transparent legislation.
According to him, legislations exist to protect the laws guiding businesses and expressed satisfaction that the arbitration of the MoU was under the country’s jurisdiction.
He expressed belief that with the assurances from the major financiers of the project, commencement of the project would soon begin.
Speaking while signing the agreement on behalf of the contractors, Alhaji Umaru Abdul Mutallab Chairman of 3W Alliance ltd and leader of the delegation assured of their readiness to urgently execute the project as demanded.
Mutallab a former Minister of Economic Development said, “We look forward to immediate commencement of the project and we will do our very best to ensure speedy completion of the project.”
He commended the governor on his foresight, describing the industrial park as a significant economic investment for the people of the state.
Other partners in the project who accompanied Alhaji Mutallab included, Emilio Magoni of Impresit Bakolori, Oliver Zheo representing Longxin Group, Jackson Ilusiantei from Nebei Port in China, Emmanuel Okon of Eminence Oil and Chemical and Rabi Momoh who led the team from Heritage Bank, Olojede Alani of New Insurance and Bolarinwa Sanmi of Pan Africa Capital.
To sign the agreement on behalf of the state government included the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Uwemedimo Nwoko, Commissioner for Investments, Trade and Industry Prof. Eno Ikpe and the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Technical Matters and Due Process Elder Ufot Ebong.
By Essien Ndueso