BY GABRIEL OKECHUKWU, PORT HARCOURT
President Muhammadu Buhari says the present administration will continue to provide needed logistics for Security Agencies to boost the fight against insurgency banditry and other sundry crimes in parts of the country.
President Muhammadu Buhari made the Pledge while inaugurating sixty-Six Units of one bedroom flat residential quarters built by Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, for Nigeria Police Special Protection Unit, SPU, Base 6, at Omagwa Ikwere Local Government Area, Rivers State.
The residential quarters has administrative block, an armory, gate house, underground cell, the commander’s residence, second-in-command’s residence and 66 one-bedroom flats.
President Muhammadu Buhari while inaugurating the project at Omagwa, Rivers State, noted that the provision of the accommodation will boost the morale of the Police in the protecting of lives and property in the Niger Delta Region and the nation at large .
President Buhari who was represented by Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, restated the commitment of the Federal Government to support security agencies to enhance the fight against insecurity in the country.
“Today’s event meets two objectives, the first being that it is an important part of our government’s effort to improve the lives and livelihood of our police officers.
“It is also another important milestone in my administration’s pursuit of peace, prosperity and development of the Niger Delta region.“
“ We recognize that establishing adequate security is absolutely integral to the fulfilment of this objective.”
Similarly, the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio who appreciated the host Communities for providing enabling environment for the completion of the projects, promised that East West Road Will receive urgent attention.
He commended the National Assembly for their support, and gave assurance that the NDDC will continue to work for the people.
The minister while speaking on the gains of the forensic audit, expressed delight that seventy -seven abandoned roads have been completed.
“Slowly by slowly, we are getting to a point where every Kobo will count in NDDC.”
“Mr. President we will invite you almost every month to commission one project or the other, done by NDDC.”
“I think things have changed and we must see the change.”
The former Governor of Akwa Ibom State emphasized accountability in the commission adding that funds would be judiciously utilized.
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs stated that more projects executed by the Interventionist Agency would be inaugurated.
“We have a big project that we will also invite Mr. President to commission in November this year and the Commission has completed 77 road projects hitherto abandoned.”
According to the minister, East West Road, will receive urgent attention especially, Akpajo – Onne axis of the road.
On his part, the Interim Administrator of NDDC, Mr. Efiong Akwa who was happy for the completion of the project, stated that many abandoned projects have been completed by the present administration without awarding new contacts.
The Chief Executive Officer of NDDC expressed confidence that the project would improve security in the Niger Delta Region and Rivers State in particular.
“We acknowledge that the NDDC will not have been able to perform well without the support of the security agencies, especially the police. It follows, therefore, that it is in our best interest to continue to assist the Police to combat crime effectively within the region.”
The NDDC Interim Administrator said that it took courage to bring the project which was abandoned at a point to fruition after a visit to the site.
“We have presidential Directive that we must revisit and complete abandoned projects that have direct impact on the lives of the people.”
“It took a lot of courage and purposeful leadership that is why I am thankful to the President, he was urging us to go forward.”
Mr. Akwa while appreciating President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, observed that Federal Government has invested much in NDDC and the residents need to benefit from the gesture.
The Interim Administrator gave assurance that the commission would continue to execute projects that will have positive impacts on the people of the region.
In the same vein, the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike who applauded the Interim Administrator of NDDC, said that he was planning to take over the project before the present administration of NDDC facilitated the completion of the project.
Governor Wike, acknowledged that security operatives have done well in the protection of lives and property in the State and as such, deserve comfortable accommodation.
The governor regretted that in the past, politicians have hijacked NNDC projects and called for a change of the trend.
The Rivers State Governor reminded NDDC management of the discussion they had, to
co-finance the construction of Eastern Bypass Road.
Governor Nyesom Wike however called for collaboration between the Commission and the Governors of Niger Delta Region.
“What projects do you want in this State?
If you ask all the states in the Niger Delta, say State (a) what kind of project do you want NDDC to execute?”
“Our interest is that we want to synergize with you so that you don’t repeat those things we are doing.”
He advised the beneficiaries to keep the facility clean.
The Inspector General of Police, IGP, Alkali Baba in his response, described the project as a land mark and novel for Special Protection Unit, SPU, of Nigeria Police.
According to IGP Baba, the Police would adopt the template for such quarters for Police Force in parts of the country.
He stated that the facility would enhance the operation of the Police in the region.
The Inspector General of Police appreciated the NDDC and Federal Government and gave assurance of judicious use of the facility.