By Steve Oko
Residents of Arochukwu community in Arochukwu Local Government Area of Abia State, have called for urgent intervention by both the federal and the state government as erosion threatens their only link road.
They called on Governments to support their efforts towards fixing the road abandoned for over 20 years.
The one-kilometer road in Agbagwu village links the Arochukwu/Ohafia federal road with the Old Ministry of Works and Housing garage, the Abia Hotel complex, churches, schools and residential buildings in the area.
Some indigenes of the community who narrated their ordeal following the collapse of the road described their experience as hellish.
One of the residents, Mr. Emmanuel Ikechukwu, told our correspondent that apart from the deplorable nature of the road, gully erosion had also eaten up a great portion of the road.
He said it posed a great danger to the community, especially during rainy seasons.
According to him, but for the intervention of a concerned indigene of the area, Pastor Eberechukwu Orji, the entire communities would have been cut off from the rest of the state.
“For many years we have forgotten about driving our cars into our houses, until recently when one of our brother’s Pastor and Mrs Eberechkwu Oji, decided to intervene in fixing the road.
“They were the people that started the drainage work that is ongoing on this road, that is why we are calling on the government and other good-spirited individuals to collaborate with them and complete the job for the benefits of all and sundry.
“This road is very strategic because it connects many villages to our Central market, Hospital, Police station. But most importantly this road leads to the Abia Hotel complex which used to be a big tourist centre in this community starting from the old Imo state but is now abandoned for many years.
When contacted, Oji, confirmed that the quest to contribute his quotas to society made him take up the onerous responsibility of fixing the road through the Nestar Corporate Services Limited.
He said that he had spent over N10 million in managing the road while urging Government to come to the rescue of his people.
” My wife and I embarked on the project to give back to our hometown. My house is on the road and I was shocked to see that erosion had completely destroyed the road and it was no longer motorable. People who live on both ends of the road have to suffer a long journey to cross what was ordinarily a short road.
“We need partners, both private individuals of like minds, corporate organizations, government agencies like the Federal Road Maintenance Agency, the Niger Delta Development Commission, and the Ministry of Works to join hands with us to fast track and complete the road construction work.”