In order to check the perennial problem of flood in Ndiegoro axis of Aba metropolis, Abia State government will soon complete the underground tunnel at Umuagbai that will drain the flood water there and channel it to the Aba River.
Meanwhile, the state government on Wednesday declared its intension to drag the federal government to court over the central government’s refusal to reconstruct its roads in the state or refund monies spent by the state government in rehabilitating the roads.
Governor Okezie Ikpeazu who briefed journalists at the Government Lodge at Aba in reaction to some criticisms of bad road network in the commercial city, lamented that the government has spent huge sums of funds in reconstructing many dilapidated federal roads, stressing that despite the state government’s efforts in fixing the roads, the federal government have not been forthcoming in refunding such monies spent.
Most of the roads that are bad in Abia State, he acknowledged are federal roads, with no visible plan by the federal authorities to rehabilitate them.
“We’ll first all seek the advice of the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice of our state including the counsels prominent lawyers because we feel that there’s a deliberate attempt by somebody somewhere to seize us by the jugular and squeeze breathe out of our lives.
“Otherwise, how can you refuse to build the roads that belong to you and at the same frustrate all efforts we’re making to fix them? You want to cut us off from the rest of the country because all the federal roads leading to other states from Abia are in terrible shape. We’re now in Siberia and it’s unacceptable to us”, the governor emphasized.
For instance, the Abia chief disclosed that the Ikot Ekpene Road leading to Akwa Ibom is in the state disrepair, the Port Harcourt Road linking Abia with Rivers State is seriously dilapidated, the Umuahia Ikot Ekpene Road is terribly bad, Ekeakpara Road that leads to Imo State is inaccessible, while the Azumini-Ukwa Road is impassable, wondering how a people who are completely cut off from their neighbours could survive under that condition.
Ikpeazu however disclosed that the state has begun the reconstruction and expansion of the Port Harcourt Road and pointed out that the government converted the road to six lanes in order to facilitate easy vehicular movements.
According him, two of the lanes would be rehabilitated in the first phase of the reconstruction exercise, adding that the government has so far paid the contractor handling the project N3billion for the construction of one lane and would soon release more money for the second lane.
The Abia governor disclosed that so far 41 roads have been rehabilitated in the commercial city of Aba, confirming that some of the roads rehabilitated can last til 30 years because they were built with the rigid cement technology device.
On the failed portion of Faulks Road, Ikpeazu blamed the damaged Road to the activities of unpatriotic elements in the city who burnt some tires in December 2020 which led to damage some portions of it, even as he described as untrue the allegation by the opponents of his government that Abia State under his watch completed the failed road with the sum of N6billion.
On Ngwa, Obuohia and Ohanku Roads all in Aba, the Abia governor disclosed the state government’s partnership with the World Bank in reconstructing the roads is yielding positive results, saying that work is progressing on Ngwa Road, while Obuohia and Ohanku would be completed before the expiration of his administration.
He assured that the Osisioma Flyover Bridge would soon be completed, pointing out that the contractor handling the project has financially been mobilized and has returned to site.
Uche Nwosu is a two time Shell Petroleum PLC award winner in the year 2000;
He won the Shell Award on Investigative Journalism and Environmental Cleanliness.