By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo
Irked by the bottleneck militating against the vision of Akwa Ibom State Government in establishing the Ibaka Deep Seaport, the state government is looking for experts in maritime sector.
Information and Strategy Commissioner in the state, Mr. Udoh said on Wednesday during a chat with journalists in Uyo that government has called for proposals to appoint experts that would be engaged to look into the bottleneck in order to speed up the project realization.
Mr. Udoh who decried what is termed as “policy summersault” which includes dollar rise per Naira for having negative effect on the industrialization drive of the state, with investors developing cool feet, maintained the state government was committed and focused on the dream to make Akwa Ibom an industrial hub.
In another development, the Information and Strategy Commissioner said, the state government has set up a special committee to find a lasting solution to the perennial high cost of petroleum products in the state.
He explained that the Committee has the Commissioner for Transport and Petroleum Resources, Mr. Ostman Esin as its chairman.
Mr. Udoh said that the state government is worried about why Akwa Ibom as one the leading oil bearing states in the country could not have the products available and sold at government regulatory pump prices of N145.00 in the case PMS and N150 for Kerosene.
He assured that with setting up of the Special Committee, normalcy would return in the filling stations in the state by this weekend.
It would be recalled that petroleum product consumers in the state have had it so bad since last year November, with pump of PMS otherwise called petrol and Kerosene selling above the approved pump price.
Major marketers such as NNPC Mega station, Total, Mobil, Oando, Forte Oil etc rarely have the products to sell the public. Where any of them has and sell at approved pump price, motorists would spend almost a day with long queue of vehicles before buying.
Though other sales outlets across the state have the products but hiked the price to between N190.00 to N200.00 for petrol and N200 and N220.00 for kerosene currently without queue. Owners of these stations claimed that they buy the product at a higher price from the middlemen, including those from Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), which is the official government agency.
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) in the state is alleged to be collaborators as these middlemen engaged in this shylock tendency unmolested, investigations has revealed.
The general effect of the situation is the high cost of goods and services in the state, with people on fixed income earning groaning most.