By Matthew Ajai-Kume
Governor Samuel Ortom has laid foundation for the construction of state-of-the-art palace for the Paramount Ruler of Idoma nation, the Och’Idoma, Agabaidu Elias Ikoyi Obekpa.
Performing the ceremony recently, Governor Ortom assured of his administration’s readiness to construct the palace within seven months. He said with the technical know-how of the contractor, his administration is hopeful that the project would be executed according to specification and completed in record time.
Governor Ortom noted that the sustained partnership with the Bureau of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs could guarantee the expected result. “In order to avoid capital flight, my administration has decided to engage indigenous contractors and engineers in all of its contracts,” Governor Ortom stated.
Also speaking, Special Adviser to the Governor on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Barr Kenneth Achabo who described Governor Ortom as the most vindicated governor in the country, expressed hope that the project would be given the needed attention for its speedy completion.
The Och’Idoma, Agabaidu Elias Ikoyi Obekpa in a remark, said Governor Ortom could have ignored his palace after constructing that of the Tor Tiv but coming to replicate what his administration had done in the traditional home of the Tiv nation, showed a high level of magnanimity.
On his part, contractor handling the palace, Eng Agaba Ikwue, promised completion of the work before the end of this year, according to specifications and commended the state government for awarding the contract to his company.
Earlier, Chairman of Otukpo Local Government Council, Mr George Ali, said the governor’s coming to lay foundation for the building of the Och’Idoma’s palace confirmed the seriousness his administration has attached to the project.
The governor also inspected the Otukp’Icho-Aondona road under construction where he expressed hope that it would be completed soon for enhanced socio economic development of people in the adjoining communities.