By Samuel Oyadongha
YENAGOA—A MASSIVE multi-million housing project is under construction at Anyama-Ijaw in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area, Bayelsa State, an area that some years back, could only be accessed by river and a foot path in the thickset mangrove forest.
Things are taking shape in the hitherto rustic community, which now boasts of a smooth tarred road linking it to mainland Yenagoa. Though work on the construction of the Yenagoa- Oporoma road project designed to link the far-flung communities in Southern Ijaw council area to mainland Yenagoa has been stalled, lately, due to poor funding in the wake of the recession rocking the nation, the linking of Anyama-Ijaw community has turned out to be its catalyst for change. The low -cost housing project, consists of approximately 1,600 units of a mix of one- bedroom flat, two-bedroom flat and three- bedroom flat.
Our plan– Gov Dickson
Speaking on the housing project, Governor Dickson said it was part of government’s effort to crash the high cost of house rent in the state capital, as well as meet the needs of Bayelsa citizens, who want to have their own houses.
The gigantic project located along the strategic Yenagoa-Oporoma-Koluama road, designed to open the central senatorial zone and the state forest reserves for agricultural business and lumbering is being built through direct labour, making the area a beehive of activities on work days.
A top government official, who spoke anonymously, told NDV that the project was one of the several legacy projects initiated by the Dickson Restoration Administration, DRA, to impact on the lives of the people. He said: “The location of project site, which is less than 10 minutes drive to Yenagoa is not only aimed at decongesting the state capital, but also open new frontiers of development in the rural enclave of the state.”
Our reporter, who travelled through the area, weekend, observed that some of the bungalow structures designed by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development in collaboration with the Bayelsa State Housing and Property Development Authority, has reached roofing level while others are at DPC and window level.
Our community witnessing transformation – Villagers
Some community folks told NDV that the commencement of project has further boosted commerce in the area due to the influx of people. “Our community is fast transforming into a cosmopolitan centre. This is no doubt the dividend of democracy we all craved for. It might interest you to know that some few years back, our community was not motorable, that is why we relied on boat to get home through the river and motorcycle, popularly known as Okada, to access our ancestral home during the dry season. But today, we have one of the best roads and to crown it all, we again have this massive housing project being embarked upon by the state government,” one of the resident said.
According to him: “You need to see the hundreds of youths working at the site on work days as well as the large number of food vendors plying their trade and earning a decent living,” said Ebiowei.