By Esseh Ikora
The chairman of Mkpat Enin local government council of Akwa Ibom state, Ekanem Brown said that he was able to provide funding for all projects embarked upon by the Council through strategic partnership.
Speaking at a Media Chat tagged, “The Arena,” which was organized by the Correspondents’ Chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), he said that the public partnership policy of his administration had recorded difference in terms of the number of projects executed.
“Our advantage is in strategic partnership, instead of looking for physical cash to get things done, we use our integrity. Integrity matters in business a lot. We invite investors and discuss with them without necessarily putting in money first.
“I also have the support of governor Udom Gabriel, who has created the enabling environment. There is no way I would have engaged the investors without the enabling environment created by him in the first place. I saw the future and it was bright and we moved in,” Brown said.
The council boss disclosed that he inherited a Council with dilapidated infrastructure but had to summon courage to start, adding: “When I came, there was total collapse of infrastructure – no chairs, no tables and stationery in the local government. I had to approach the development from an angry perspective.
“I hit the ground running to ensure that we have a good working environment. There were no chairs, no tables, no electricity and no computers to work with and coming from the private sector, I think that was not good enough,” he said.
Brown, who marking his first hundred days in office said, “Barely one hundred days since I came to power as the Local Government Chairman, this administration has achieved so much, including reactivation of broken down boreholes, repairs of abandoned 165kvs transformer to generate power to the council and its surrounding communities, among others.”
He said the establishment of the shoe factory, which is the best in the Niger Delta sub-region and the heavy investment in agriculture, were deliberate efforts of his government to grow the economy and key into the industrialization drive of the state governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel.
The chairman stated that he has sponsored a Public Private partnership (PPP) bill to the legislative arm of the local government as a deliberate policy to protect all the investments and ensure that they outlived the tenure of his administration.