Akwa Ibom seeks Federal assistance to fix bad road



FOLLOWING the deplorable condition of Calbar –Itu Highway, Enen Atai Itam Village in Itu Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, the state governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, has called the Federal government to come to its aid to put the road into proper shame.

The highway constructed by the erstwhile military administration in the 70s is almost severed by erosion threatening the road on both sides.

Emmanuel, who was conducted round the scene of the landslide at the weekend by the Permanent Secretary, state Ministry of Work, Dr. Ifreke Ekpa, lamented the threat posed by the menace to human and economic life between Akwa Ibom and Cross River States as vehicles ferrying goods and services daily ply the road.

The governor, who was accompanied by the senator representing Akwa Ibom North-east, Senator Bassey Albert Akpan, Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Etekamba Umoren and some permanent secretaries, however advocated for the need for the federal government to extend a hand of fellowship by entering into Public-Private Partnership (PPP) to construct and maintain the road serving as economic nerve centre of the area of the south-south region.
This is the busiest road in this part of the region, witnessing huge commercial activities. This is a federal road. Where the resources of Akwa Ibom government cannot afford the construction of the road, the federal government has to do something urgently to aid us. The ecological funds are not coming,” Emmanuel stated.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Works, Ekpa, who said the ministry embarked on speedy remedial work on the road, hinted that the landslide was 25 metres from the median road surface.

The Chief Technical Officer, Federal Ministry of Works, Uyo, Mr. Christopher Ita, said he had sent a proposal on the menace to the Federal Ministry of Works, Abuja for immediate action.

A civil engineer with Federal Emergency Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA), Nkwa Henshaw, lamented the threat posed by the menace, and noted that the agency has started to intervene on the road to curb the landslide.

Earlier, the Village Head, Professor Effanga James Usua, had described the situation as terrible, adding that the governor by his visit to the community has again shown that he was ready and willing to give Akwa State the right kind of leadership. He, however, urged the governor to expedite action on the road.

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