. Otobong Jonathan
As housing continues to pose greater threat to the ever growing Nigerian population, the need for government at all level to convert unutilized housing assets to revenue earners has been advocated by the member representing Ukanafun State Constituency in the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly; Hon. Otobong Jonathan Akpan.
Hon. Otobong Akpan made his position on the inadequacy of housing facilities known when members of the state assembly inspected the ongoing construction work on the Akwa Ibom State Governor’s Lodge in Lagos state, to replace the old lodge, which is in a state of disrepair.
Hon Akpan who doubles as Chairman House committee on housing evaluated the huge revenue the state can draw from rehabilitating the old lodge on Victoria Island to a full commercial and ICT compliant building, judging from the leap in commercial activities around the area, which business organizations daily throng in search for conducive accommodation.
He decried the situation where housing assets of government across the country lie in desolation at a time numerous citizens were in want of shelter; describing as senseless the abandonment dealt on government facilities once new ones were built; calling on the Akwa Ibom State Government not to fall prey to such wasteful practices.
Enumerating the need to rehabilitate the old lodge to include giving the state a sane corporate image in the nation’s commercial capital, rather than have her signage on a dilapidated structure, the Ukanafun lawmaker advised that abandoning the property could bring the state disrepute, as miscreants may take the advantage of such negligence to perpetuate crime.
Stating his satisfaction with the pace of work on the new lodge, Hon. Akpan charged the state government to ensure that plans for prompt maintenance on the facility is considered, to enhance longevity of components put in place, saying with effective servicing and maintenance, the state would derive maximum utility from the facility.
He thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for seeing to the expansion of existing housing estates and plans to establish new ones, while lauding the sixth assembly’s effort at effectively utilizing existing housing assets of government through a recent order on Local Government Officials to resume occupancy of the security villages provided in the 31 Local Government Areas.