Rivers State Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara, has vowed to end the one-city status of the state, saying more cities would be created to attract more investments.
Fubara said this during an inspection visit to the Greater Port Harcourt City Development Authority office and project sites in Ikwerre Local Government Area of the state on Wednesday.
He stated that his administration is determined to do more by adding to what it has inherited from the agency in order to establish more cities in the State
“I can assure you that in our time, we might not achieve the dream of that big city in four years, but we will add a few things that would also help us in getting at that target.
“This is because, we are thinking of decongesting the present one city-state that we have, which is Port Harcourt and Obio Akpor.
“We are thinking of developing other parts of the state and our coming here is to see what the agency has been doing, what you have done already, and what we can also do to make us achieve more new cities in our state.”
The governor noted that despite the challenges plaguing the agency if its development ideals are aligned with those of the state government mutually with the required synergy provided, there will be a remarkable difference in what will be achieved within his tenure.
He therefore charged the agency to be self-sustaining as outlined by the establishment law to attract investors.
In his address, the sole administrator of the GPHCDA, Desmond Akawor, informed that since its establishment in 2009 by the Greater Port Harcourt Law, the agency has been slowed down in its mandate of creating more cities because of its operational structure and the nature of the Public-Private Partnership adopted.
Akawor, who is also the state chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party explained that a new legal framework, started by the last GPHDA board has been fine-tuned by the current management and is ready for presentation to the governor to help it achieve its mandate.
He stated, “I’m sure that with your directives, we will be able to reschedule some of the projects so that we can move forward with all of our partners, especially in the area of reforming or strengthening the public-private partnership arrangements.
“We believe that when that happens, we will look at other towns in the state in the Rivers West, Rivers East, and Rivers South East and be able to have even development in our state.”