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Obong Nsima Ekere, MD NDDC

FG will no longer tolerate abandoned projects by NDDC contractors, Commissioner warns

 Obong Nsima Ekere, MD NDDC

Obong Nsima Ekere, MD NDDC
By Kenny Adams

Contractors who abandon projects meant for the development of the Niger-Delta, will no longer be tolerated, Akwa Ibom Commissioner on the Board of Niger-Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Hon. Samuel Frank has warned.

He gave the warning midweek, when he led management staff of the commission on an inspection visit to the abandoned NDDC permanent State Office Complex along Information Drive, in Uyo.

The Commissioner, who was visibly shocked at the level of work done on the project, expressed displeasure that the contract which was awarded to Messrs Brett Nigeria Limited in April 2012 at the cost of N421 million with 15% mobilisation fee paid could still be found at less than 5% completion level in November five years after.

He said it was surprising that five years after the contract was awarded, not even the soil has been excavated for work to begin and expressed displeasure that the delay has led to over 150% variation in the initial cost of the project. He directed the contractor to ensure that work begins on or before the second week of January 2017 with a maximum completion period of 18 months.

Hon. Frank promised to draw the attention of the Managing Director/CEO and the NDDC Governing Board to issues militating against the completion of the project, as well as ensure all projects are backed with adequate funding to contractors willing to work and deliver on the jobs.

The Commissioner who expounded on the commitment of President Buhari for the development of the region, promised to ensure that all impediments to the smooth initiation, implementation and execution of life-touching projects are sorted out.

The contractor in his remarks said, the problem facing the the project has been lack of adequate funding and appealed to the Commissioner to assist the company in getting timely release of funds even as he promised to deliver the job within 18 months.

He explained that the initial design of the project was a two story building but that it has been redesigned to accommodate a 4-story building.

Other projects also visited by the management team were the Mini Stadium project undertaken by the NDDC at Ididep, Ibiono LGA which was awarded to Austramike Limited in August 2012 at the cost of N298 million but with only 30% of the work done.

Hon Frank explained that though the initial plan was for the mini stadium to serve the Federal Polytechnic initially billed to be located in the area, the relocation of the Polytechnic to Ukana in Essien Udim LGA notwithstanding, the project will still be completed by the NDDC so as to serve other schools within the locality as well as help groom sportsmen from the area.

Others are; the 16km Erosion control/road project at Ididep awarded to United Dominion Company Limited in 2011; the 10.125km Ididep-Ekpeyong-Ikot Etim Afaha Itiat road project awarded to Saaem Global Link Limited in 2012 with a 71% completion status, the 12.5km Oko Ita-Itu- Mbak Atai- Ikot Ntuen- Mkpeti- Oku Iboku road awarded in 2013 to Sami Nigeria Limited, the Ididep-Ikot Edok-Ikot Obong-Use-Ikot Oku-Ididep Usuk-Ikot Ekwere road among others.

The Commissioner however, directed the State Director, Mr G.C. Amadi to summon contractors who were executing sub-standard jobs to his office for a meeting as the era of poor contract execution by NDDC had elapsed.

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