By Hassan Mijinyawa.
Infrastructural development is fundamental to the success of every government globally. It is more pungent with developing countries, where growth is measured by visible accomplishments. Taraba, like any other state in Nigeria, suffers from infrastructural deficit, with poor roads affecting economic and social life. Successive administrations have also focused on this.
Governor Darius Ishaku Dickson’s administration is not only focusing on infrastructure but has gone ahead to give its infrastructure development a sense of modernity. Having toured the state before crafting his blueprint of development titled “The Rescue Agenda”, provision of roads gained prominence.
The Ishaku administration evenhandedly changed the narrative. For instance, apart from grading many feeder roads across the state, he embarked on key roads construction, some, indeed, federal roads to fast track development within the state and between Taraba and its neighbours as well as other border communities. In Southern Taraba, the Takum- Katsina Ala road that links Benue State, the on-going Takum-Chanchanji road, the Wukari-Tsokundi road as well as the Takum township roads have been undertaken by the administration. These roads provide easy access for travelers. Also, the Mararraba-Baissa-Abong road and a portion of the Bali-Serti-Gembu road in the Central Senatorial district, linking the Republic of Cameroun have all felt the impact of Governor Ishaku’s intervention. These roads are heavily patronized by traders from both countries.
In the Northern Senatorial District, the Jalingo-Kona Lau road has received accelerated attention because of its importance to local commerce and other commuting purposes.
Known as “Nature’s Gift to the Nation,” Taraba State is awash with huge resources, comprising agricultural produce and solid mineral deposits, which, if harnessed will open up the state further for sustainable economic growth. Providing access roads as Governor Ishaku is doing now will quickly transform Taraba into a great business hub and in the near future, be reckoned with as one of the richest states in Nigeria.
The determination of the Ishaku administration saw to the tarring of other roads in Jalingo, the State capital. For instance, the once muddy and dusty roads in Magami, have been constructed by the administration giving the environment beauty and the inhabitants a sense of pride. It is quite extraordinary and remarkable.
On assumption of office, Governor Darius Ishaku undertook a tour of Taraba Road Construction and Maintenance Agency, (TARCMA) a parastatal of government charged with road construction to improve network connectivity in all parts of the state for accelerated economic and social development. Governor Ishaku inspected the equipment and was in transports of joy, promising to refurbish some of them to place the agency on the Rescue assignment, which he did, with the following as dividends of democracy to the people of Taraba state within just one year. They include reconstruction of the Takum-Katsina-Ala road phase 1, 6.5km, federal route 45, completion of the 1.5 km roads at the Federal Medical Centre, Jalingo, improvement/grading of some township roads in Jalingo, which include TSBS- Anguwan Kasa-NNPC, LCCN Church-Mayo Gwoi road, SSS road-Nana Aisha junction-Comprehensive School road, Water Board Junction-Magami Quarters road, TSTC Workshop-Airstrip road, Federal Medical Centre Gate-NTA road and TADP-THU road.
The on –going dual carriage way from the DDI Garden estate to Kpanti Napu with a bridge over Nukkai and an underpass at the busy road block area will reduce congestion on completion.
The on-going construction of the flyover at Road Block is a remarkable project that would add beauty and colour to Jalingo, the State capital. It is the icing on the cake of the Ishaku administration’s effort to make Taraba proud, a redefinition of the right agenda of development for subsequent administrations to follow without any glitch. The decision for a flyover is well made considering the fact that state capitals now use such edifices like flyovers as symbols of modernity and steady developmental strides.
All the roads projects are capital intensive and subject to vicissitude of circumstances like paucity of funds, global epidemic like the current corona virus pandemic and communal crises, which could have devastating consequences. However, the administration is on course in the roads projects aimed at lifting the image of Taraba up from a rural backwater.
Governor Ishaku’s excellent background as an architect informs this step, which is why, when completed, the flyover will redound to the greatness of Jalingo, Taraba State capital. This calls for rejoicing and celebration of an achiever who came and left notable milestones like rehabilitating projects of past administrations and going on to start and complete his own.
On the part of the administration, it has surpassed its mandate and projection as evinced in its blueprint, The Rescue Agenda, in spite of drawbacks of both human and natural proportion. Congratulations, the architect of modern Taraba, Architect Darius Dickson Ishaku.
Mijinyawa is Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Taraba State.