… Inaugurates Community Relations Committee
The Akwa Ibom State Government has inaugurated the University of Uyo Community Relations Committee to work out modalities to end perennial boundary problems between the University’s permanent site along Nwaniba road and the host communities.
Inaugurating the Committee on Monday at Government House, Uyo, the Secretary to the State Government, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem urged members of the committee to ensure that peace and harmony prevails among the host communities and the institution.
Dr Ekuwem, who described the University of Uyo as a brand through which the host communities and villages are known within and outside the shores of Nigeria, expressed optimism that with the inauguration of the committee, frequent border tension and conflict between the University and the ten host communities and villages would have been addressed.
He stated that the constitution of the committee is sequel to the peaceful disposition of the State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel who according to the SSG, is committed to the growth and expansion of the University.
The terms of reference for the 28 member Committee include interfacing proactively between the 10 Host Communities and Villages and the University to ensure that there is peace and harmony at all times, liaise with the Director of Physical Planning of the University to ensure that perimeter fencing or road is constructed along the boundary between any of the villages and the University, to promptly report all matters of discomfort or encroachment on land or threat of demolition to the Secretary to State Government and liaise with the Steering Committee to draw up Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will address interests of all parties involved in the University Community Relations, among others.
The Committee whose Chairman would be named soon, has the Chairman of Eman Ikot Ebo Village Council in Uruan Local Government Area, Obong Ime Okon Udo as Vice Chairman, while the Special Assistant on Adminstrative Matters to the SSG, Elder Fidelis Utibeimabasi serves as Secretary.
Dr Ekuwem, who also announced the setting up of a Steering Committee in respect of the University of Uyo Permanent Site, chaired by him, noted that the Committee is expected to hold regular meetings with the SSG with a view to resolving all boundary disputes between the parties involved.
Members of the Steering Committee are the Commissioner for Lands and Water Resources, Arc. Ime Ekpo, the State Surveyor-General, Surv.(Mrs) Emem Isang, Vice Chancellor, University of Uyo, Prof. Enefiok Essien and the member representing Uyo State Constituency in the State House of Assembly, Rt Hon. Anietie Eka.
Others are the Chairman, Uyo Capital City Development Authority (UCCDA), Prince Enobong Uwah, Acting Chairman, Uyo Local Government Council, Ukai Udeme Emmanuel and the Community Leader,Ekpri Nsukkara, Elder Enefiok Ekefre.
Responding on behalf of the 28 member of the University of Uyo Community Relations Committee, the Chairman, Ekpri Nsukkara Village Council, Sir Rapheal Essien, thanked the State Government for finding them worthy to serve in the Committee and pledged to work assiduously to justify the confidence reposed in them.