Niger Delta Youth Peace Builders have said that if the Abia state Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu had fulfilled his promises of bringing the challenges of flood in Aba to an end, by utilizing a whooping N27.4 billion released by world Bank for Aba Emergency Flood Mitigation project, the flood disaster which hit Aba residents on October 20, 2022 would have been averted.
The Youth Organization said that Abians wouldn’t have known that the money was not used to tackle the flood challenge, if the heavy downpour that hit the city had not occurred on 20th, October, to clearly show that nothing was done with the fund released by World Bank handle to the flood project.
The President of Niger Delta Youth Peace Builders, Comrade Chibuike Emmanuel, who disclosed this in a press statement he issued after observing what the flood did to the people of Aba, their goods, houses and sources of livelihood decried decried the devastating nature of the flood and called on Aba residents to end the inhuman treated being meted out to them by the Government in power.
He said that this is one of the ways that Government has shortchanged them, by not applying the fund approved, released and given to Government for a project that will benefit Aba people to other selfish uses thereby prolonging their sufferings.
Emmanuel Said that the youths are aware of how difficult it will be difficult to recover that money intact once it has gone into the coffers of some contractors, who connive with Government to rape the state of funds meant for its well being.
He urged Abians to rise and do something that will avert future occurrences of diverting funds meant for projects that will benefit the masses to personal uses by ensuring that they vote the right people into power in 2023 elections.
“In this case , we have a debt of about 27.4 billion hanging on our necks as a state, with an unexpected project which will keep endangering the lives of Abians because Abia has been shortchanged as far as that project and money is concerned”, he said.
“Knowing how impossible it is to recover fund that has gotten into the accounts of the politicians who have governed the state for more than 20 years, the only option left for Abia people is to ensure that those who balkanized the state are not brought back during the 2023 elections, otherwise, they will still continue with their style of governance until they ground the state to a halt, the Youth leader said.
“In the forthcoming 2023 elections, Abians should vote out the government that misappropriated a whooping N27.4 billion meant for flood mitigation in Aba, so that they will end the misrule that has become the order of the day in the state.
“They can rise and vote a man of integrity who has the ability to restore the confidence of donors and investors in the State for infrastructural development.
The only man who has the capacity, ability and integrity to right the wrongs is the All Progressive APC, Candidate, High Chief Ikechi Emenike, who is the most capable and trusted technocrat, with national and international goodwill, needed to attract development to Abia State”.
“I hereby call on Abians to say no to godfather ism and installation of stooges who are ill- prepared for governance, everyone should join hands to rescue and develop Abia as a state”, he said.
Throwing more light on the cause of the Aba flood, the Youth leader explained that construction of an underground tunnel along Uratta and Obohia roads, to move the storm water from Uratta and Umuagbai ponds to Aba River was what was needed to solve the flood challenge.
“The Uratta tunnel will traverse Port Harcourt Road and meet the Obohia tunnel at Obohia by Ngwa Road and become one single tunnel along Ngwa Road to empty the flood water into Aba River, which was not done.
He explained further that there should have also been a full reconstruction of Obohia and Ngwa Roads as well as reconstruction of some parts of Uratta and Port Harcourt Roads within the project area, but that it was completely neglected.
“Reconstructing the major roads alone, without properly channeling storm water will continue to be a disservice to the people of Aba, as it will only be a matter of time before flood water will wash off the new road.
Emmanuel alleged that Abia state Government did not live up to its promise of bringing to an end the challenges of flood in Aba, which is part of the obligation they owe Aba residents.
“But the October 20th down pour, which led to the flooding of all the nooks and crannies of Aba has clearly shown that Government did not do the project for which a whooping N27.4 billion was approved and released by the World Bank. END