By Egufe Yafugborhi – Port Harcourt
Contractors handling key Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) projects abandoned for years over non-settlement of Interim Payment Certificates (IPCs) in Akwa Ibom state have insisted they would only return to sites if the commission pays them.
The contractors expressed the concern in response to appeal for completion of the projects by NDDC Sole Administrator, Efiong Akwa, following his project inspection visit to Akwa Ibom.
Some of the key projects stalemated by NDDC’s failure to settle contractors’ IPCs include the Regional Specialist Hospital at Mkpat Enin Local Government Area (LGA) and the 175-room University of Uyo Permanent site hostel in Uyo LGA.
Structural Engineer for the regional hospital, Blessing Umoh, described the project as a three-in-one complex comprising Orthopaedic, Cardiovascular and Children/Maternity sections.
Contractor for the project, Mfoniso Essien, put the completion status at just 26% before it was abandoned while Emeka Maduka, contractor for the hostel project said the job was 80% done before work was halted.
In a statement by Ibitoye Abosede, NDDC Director, Corporate Affairs, the contracted asked Akwa, “For payment of IPCs to enable return to sites.”
Akwa consequently, “Directed the contractors to report to the Commission’s headquarters in Port Harcourt for comprehensive evaluation of the constraints, which would assist in putting together necessary things to ensure the realisation of the projects.”