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A'Ibom Govt To Sign MoU With Hilton Worldwide

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UYO, May 10, (THEWILL) - The Akwa Ibom State Government will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Hilton Worldwide in order to achieve proper and effective management of the proposed five-star hotel attached to the Ibom Tropicana Entertainment centre currently under construction, governor of the state, Godswill Akpabio has said.

Akpabio made the declaration recently when the Vice President Development, Southern Europe, North and West Africa, Hilton Worldwide, Mr. Deepath Seth, paid him a courtesy call at Akwa Ibom International Airport Uyo.

“We will have a Memorandum of Understanding to recover what we are investing. Yours is to give us your inputs on what you think should be put down,” he said, stressing the premium that his government has placed on the hospitality sector.

“In case you have doubt regarding the completion of the project on schedule and the determination of the government to put in place a first-class infrastructure, I am giving you that commitment that we are very committed and that the hotel you are going to manage, if you decide to come in, will be the best in this sub region.”

Referring to the maiden five-star hotel in the state, he added, “You visited Le Meridien Ibom Hotels and Golf Resort, which is dedicated to golf. We believe that when Hilton comes, a lot of golfers will have opportunity to use that place because Le Meridien is always fully booked. Many federal agencies have seminars and other functions there.

We always run into that problem of telling people to go elsewhere.”

The governor also gave assurances of his government’s commitment to improving the economy of the state, saying, “We are trying to diversify. We are trying to bring in entrepreneurship. We are about to collaborate with the Federal Government to commence a deep seaport at Ibaka....”

He, therefore, charged the company to give its inputs structurally, architecturally and aesthetically so that the hotel can be of Hilton’s standard from the beginning. He argued that a state seeking to build world-class infrastructure must go with world-class hoteliers and the best names in the hospitality industry, which is Hilton.

Akpabio pledged his administration’s readiness to work assiduously towards the timely completion of the project.

“I am assuring you that you are at the right place,” he said. “Thank you for coming and I look forward to receiving your letter of intent in the shortest possible time. I assure you of the speed of the contractors to deliver the project on time.”

State commissioner for special duties, Barr. Austin Udo Mbeh disclosed that the management of Hilton Worldwide had visited and inspected facilities of the five-star hotel at the Tropicana, and was determined to partner with the governor in developing the state.

Earlier, Mr. Seth expressed happiness with the quality of job done he had seen at the site of the project, saying, “A hotel is something that you create and it lives forever. It is very important to see the type of hotel that you create. It has to be exactly what your guests need to have. What kind of people will come? How long will they stay?

All these questions and more are to be answered.”

He described Hilton Worldwide as a fast-growing company with 2,860 branches globally, opening 250 branches yearly and currently having

900 under construction.

“That gives a big reservation system, which is important for destinations,” he added. “These are the thoughts we want to bring to you to determine the most appropriate brand that will suit the expectations of clients and guests.”