By Usiere Akpan
The Akwa Ibom government has demanded immediate Rightof Way to complete the construction of the Etinan-Eket dual carriageway in the state.
Consequently, Gov Udom Emmanuel has given marching orders to occupants of compensated structures obstructing construction work within the Nsit Ubium-Eket highway tovacate without further delays.
Emmanuel gave the order in his remark at the funeral service of late Pastor Benjamin Bassey, which took place at Afaha Atai, Eket Local Government Area, Saturday.
The governor stated that the refusal of the owners andoccupants of the already compensated buildings to vacate has inhibited the pace of work by the contractors, stressing that it was unthinkable for the owners of the property to continue living and also doing business in such buildings after collecting compensations.
He maintained that compensations to all the affected buildings were paid to identified owners after appropriate professional evaluations, emphasizing that his administration was committed to completing the dual carriage expressway from Etinan to Eket metropolis.
Emmanuel said that his administration has no records of compelling individuals and communities to accept projects and programmes with immense benefits, explaining that the call to vacate has become extremely expedient to facilitate the completion of ongoing road projects before the expiration of the tenure in the coming year.
The governor insisted, “So let those people peacefully give us the right of way so that we can finish the work in time. I’ve approximately one year to tidy up all these things and we’re determined to tidy up everything we’re doing in the state as soon as possible,” adding, “If you’ve been given the compensation, please, vacate in peace. We’re a government of peace, we don’t like forcing people out, but please don’t take us for granted.”
The governor, accompanied by his deputy, Mr Moses Ekpo, said that the decision of his administration to partake in the funeral of late Bassey was to honour the glorious exit of the deceased, announcing the donation of 20 sets of desktop computers to immortalize late Bassey for ICT learning at Government Secondary School, Afaha Atai.
Emmanuel reiterated the commitment of his administration to draw the benefits of secondary school education to more rural communities, directing appropriate use of the computer sets in the grooming of students on latest ICT requirements, whilehinting on the intent to beautify the school environment by extending gestures of renovation to cover one of the private dilapidated buildings near the school.
The general superintendent of Qua Iboe Church, Rev. Ekpedeme Efanga, in a homily tagged, “Repeating the mistake of the past”, called on the Christian community never to abandon the altar of God, adding that it was benefiting to remain steadfast and witness the salvation of God rather than waiting for the recognition of people in the line of priesthood.
Efanga, who read from Luke 2:25 -32, enjoined clergymen to be persistent in prayers, intercessions above politics, explaining that it would help in avoiding the mistake of not being prepared for the coming of Jesus Christ by the fulfillment of God’s promise.
The Pioneer gathered that the deceased was the father to the special representative to the governor, Mr. Samuel Bassey at the Akwa Ibom Liaison Office in Lagos.