…Receives commendation from Ex Minister
In his bid to ensure the functionality of the abandoned NTA channel 35, Eket, within the shortest period of time, the member representing Eket/ Esit Eket/ Ibeno/ ONNA Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Hon. Patrick Ifon, Monday, led the technical team from the headquarters of the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), Abuja on a tour on the station facility in Eket, Akwa Ibom State.
This is in compliance to the 3 weeks’ directives on the technical team by the DG, NTA, Mr. Yakubu Ibn Mohammed, to visit the facility for needs assessment that will aid in the summation of equipment cost towards the reviving of the abandoned television station during an advocacy visit by the Member of parliament on his office early in March.
The parliamentarian while appreciating the swift response of the DG on the collaboration request with NTA for the resuscitation of the community television station, averred that the visit is to afford himself and the visiting technical team firsthand knowledge on the demands of the station to be on air.
“What we are doing is to have firsthand knowledge of what and what is required to put the place back in shape to be on air.”
The MP said that station, when put to use, will impact positively on the lives of his constituents through job creation and proper information dissemination.
He maintained that as the only Federal infrastructure in the Federal Constituency, facilitated by a two term Federal Lawmaker, Chief Ndueso Essien, it will be a disservice to the people of the constituency if he fails to consolidate the achievements of the initiator while in the House of representatives.
Ifon stressed that on the conclusion of the needs assessment tour and summation of financial requirement, the team will report back to the DG, who will then inform him of his partnership pact for the revamp process to commence.
“The team will get back to the DG to brief him on the needs and the cost implication, we will have a meeting to streamline our partnership pact, so the process can commence immediately” he added.
He promised that should the needed finances for the project is above his budgetary provisions, he will liaise with spirited constituents that are financially capable to ensure that in less than no time, the station will be on air.
Engr Abraham Kadung, Head of transmitters, NTA, who led the technical team for inspection stated that he was summoned by the Executive Director engineering of the agency with emphasis that the DG has mandated that everything possible should be done to ensure NTA Eket comes on air as soon as possible, hence the reason they are at the facility for needs assessment.
He commended the lawmaker for his act of patriotism in seeking to revamp the station, and as well applauded the Ex Minister and former lawmaker, Chief Nduese Essien for his foresight in facilitating the station to the area.
The team later visited the ex-minister and former lawmaker, Chief Ndueso Essien at his Ikot Ibiok residence to brief him on the necessary steps taken so far, and seek advice and clarifications on some issues bothering the progress of the television station.
The former lawmaker commended Hon. Ifon for taking a good step in regards the revitalization of the TV station he facilitated since 2006 when he was in the house of representatives, stating that he is following every steps taken so far.
“I got the project in 2006 when I was in the House of Representatives, the building got started and was completed in 2008, after I had left the house, the building remained on use”
The former lawmaker stated that in 2010, when he was appointed a minister, he drew the attention of the then Minister of Information, Late Dora Akunyili to the abandoned state of the station and she bought equipment, installed it and test run pending commissioning in 2011, but after he left office in 2011, the commissioning never happened.
He said that what he detests most is government spending huge amount of money on projects that are never utilized, which amount to waste of public resources, stressing that if the community was an active community they would have asked for a return of their land.
He charged the team to ensure that do what they can to ensure that the station goes on air soonest.