TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike, said the success of his urban renewal programme was because of financial prudence by his administration
Governor Wike also said 10 hectares dredged land located opposite the Nigerian Liquified Natural Gas (NLNG) head office would be developed to further enhance the aesthetics of Port Harcourt city under the urban renewal programme.
Speaking with journalists after the inspection of on-going shore protection work at the sandfilled land, Governor Wike said it was amazing to have recovered such land that once served as a hideout for criminals.
He said though a decision has not been taken on what activity to approve on the land, Julius Berger construction company has been asked to start the provision of infrastructure that could serve for residential or commercial purposes.
He said: “Everybody knows that the place used to be mangrove area that served as criminals hideout opposite the new NLNG head office, but we were able to reclaim it.
“The work men are doing a good job there; it is not less than 10 hectares of land, and it is a very lucrative site for everybody who wants to carry out productive activity. We are also happy that we are now doing shore protection.
“We have asked Julius Berger to go there for the provision infrastructure so that tomorrow if it is for residential, mixed development or commercial, we know that the infrastructure is already provided”, he said.
Governor Wike also inspected an abandoned six-storey former Riv-Insurance building near the Isaac Boro Park flyover, saying the property would be rehabilitated.
“We went to Aba Road to see a property that was abandoned for over 20 years. What we are doing now is to bring it back to what it is supposed to be.
“At the new GRA, we are making sure that the roads are completed as promised the people and they are handled by Julius Berger construction company. You can see that Port Harcourt has changed because of the various construction works.
“The urban renewal programme is a great success as far as we are concerned. So many people are asking to know where we are getting the money when there is COVID-19. What is important to us is management. When once you know how to manage resources, you will not have problems. We are also impressed with the reaction of the people,” he added.
The governor also said the last five years of his administration has been remarkably successful because of the help of God.
He recalled how the former governor of the state had mocked that there would not be money anywhere for him to pay salary and to provide infrastructure, but he had surpassed it and Rivers people are not disappointed too.
The governor also inspected the Elelenwo Street and the Woji Road in the new GRA.