Akwa Ibom State government has earmarked N861 million for the completion of the abandoned state multi billion naira Science and Information Park in Uyo, which foundation was laid by former President Olusegun Obasanjo in 2003.
The Science Park project initiated by the Obong Victor Attah administration has suffered many technical and funding related challenges while many analysts believed it was overlooked by the Godswill Akapbio government due to political reasons.
The current government’s plan was contained in the 2016 budget estimate presented by Governor Udom Emmanuel to the state House of Assembly in Uyo last week.
Emmanuel maintained that the potentials of the park to the technological development of the state could no longer be overlooked by the state government, if her efforts in making the economy of the state science and technology driven could be realised by the state government.
Other ancillary projects that would complement the park, according to the governor, would also include the establishment of a research and development laboratory, establishment of self city projects, implementation of e-governance and provision of human resources in science, engineering and technology.
Nigeria Pilot recalls that though more than 80 percent of the contract amount was said to have been paid to the South African based contracting firm, Dimension Data, by the Attah administration, work on the project never advanced beyond 30 percent.
Though that administration blamed the inability to complete the project on paucity of funds occasioned by the then Supreme Court judgement on offshore/onshore oil dichotomy, the Akpabio administration suspected a scam in the contract and refused to commit funds to it until the company is made to refund to the state government the money for work it has failed to do in the park.
This did not happen while several commissions of enquiry and probe panels set up to clear the anomalies failed to see to the realisation of the project, even with a promise of federal government’s assistance by former President Goodluck Jonathan.


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