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Friday, November 15, 2019

Akwa Ibom Assembly Scores Waste Management Agency High on Performance agency Chairman hints on plans to create over 5000 jobs from waste recycling

Mfonobong Ukpong

Chairman, Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly Committee on Appropriation and Finance, Rt. Hon. Uduak Odudoh has described the agency under the leadership of its Chairman, Prince Akpan Ikim as a performing agency, saying his committee was impressed with the way and manner the agency has been discharging its core mandate of ensuring a clean and safe environment. Odudoh made the observation, Thursday when the Chairman of the agency led other Members of board and management staff to defend the 2020 budget of the agency before the lawmakers.

Odudoh, who represents Ikot-Abasi/Eastern Obolo State Constituency in the Assembly was hopeful that if and when the budget of the agency for 2020 fiscal year is approved and released, the agency would surpass its current performance. The Assembly Committee assured the agency of the readiness of the House of Assembly to accord the necessary legislative support to enable it achieve set goals and objectives.

Defending his agency's budget, Chairman of the Environmental Protection and Waste Management Agency, Prince Ikim pleaded for an upward adjustment of the agency's 2020 estimate from N1.2 Billion to N1.8 Billion. Intimating the lawmakers on some of the programmes and projects proposed for next year in a bid to achieve a Clean, Green, and Safe environment for all, he said the agency has begun a process that would ensure that wealth is created from waste generated in the state.

He announced plans to covert waste to fertilizer, generate electricity from waste, as well as waste recycling. Ikim further hinted that the government is targeting at providing jobs for over 5000 Akwa Ibom people through the planned waste to wealth creation initiative of the agency in partnership with the private sector.

"We are looking at converting waste generated in the state to wealth. We are going to covert the waste to fertilizer, generate power from the state, among other things. Government has designated a permanent dump site at Odiok Itam".

Ikim told the Committee that the agency is currently battling with over 200 court cases, saying he remains undaunted in the task of ensuring a clean and safe environment.

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