Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Traditional Rulers Send SOS To FG Over Otukpo-Ugboju-Onyagede-Ankpa Federal Road

The Traditional ruler of Ugboju district in Otukpo local government area, Chief Solomon Apochi, and his counterpart in Onyagede in Ohimini local government area, Chief Ogili Adamu have appealed the Federal government to effect urgent repairs on the Otukpo-Ugboju-Onyagede-Ankpa federal road in order to check the security and economic challenges confronting their subjects.

They lamented that the 47 kilometer road which connects the northern part of the country to the entire south, through Ankpa in kogi state, was last rehabilitated in 1991, when President Muhammadu Buhari was the Chairman of Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF).

 Speaking on the condition of the road, yesterday, the royal fathers said the deplorable state of the road had reached alarming state stressing that the people had waited for too long for the Federal government’s intervention.

They lamented that the entire communities on the axis had been cut off from neighbouring towns and cities since the road became impassable over the years, which had adversely affected economic and commercial activities of the people who were predominantly commercial farmers.

 According to Chief Apochi “my people have been subjected to long sufferings since this road went this bad several years ago. “The impression here is that our people have been abandoned and left to our fate because despite repeated appeals nothing has been done by the federal government to ameliorate our sufferings. “That is the more reason why we the traditional heads are making this passionate appeal to the authorities to come to our aid before we are completely cut off from the entire world.”

On his part, Chief Adamu noted that the state of the road had killed the business of the rural dwellers on the axis of the road who were known for their massive product of garri in commercial quantity. “Apart from the adverse effect the condition of the road is having on the business of my people we are also faced with the issue of security because it has become difficult for security agencies to come to our aid whenever we have any security issue in our communities.

“We are the largest producers of garri in this part of the country and every market day, over 50 trucks queue up here to load garri to the north, the east and the west, but today which is a market day the turnout and patronage is abysmally low because farmers can no longer access the market with their goods.

“That is why we are appealing to the Federal government to urgently Intervene to save us from the harrowing experience.”

Also speaking, the lawmaker representing Adoka/Ugboju state constituency at the Benue House of Assembly, Mr. Adam Okloho, said the sorry state of the road had also forced intending investors to abandon their intentions to invest in communities along the axis. Okloho stressed that, “it is only trucks of a cement plant in the state that are seen daily in their large numbers, conveying coals from the Onyagede axis to their factory.”

The lawmaker regretted that the trucks were largely responsible for the current state of the road and wondered why the owners of the cement factory did not deem it fit to fix the road by way of corporate social responsibility.

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