Etche People Reject ‘Patch Work’ Maintenance on the Chokocho – Igbodo Road.

People of the Etche ethnic nation have urged the Federal authorities  to suspend the patching of parts of the  Igwuruta – Igbodo Road.

This is part of the outcome of an extra ordinary emergency meeting called by Ogbakor Etche to discuss issues affecting the development of the ethnic nation.

Etche elders and opinion leaders who met in Port Harcourt at the weekend to rub minds said they were in support of the decision of the Rivers State Government to dualize the Chokocho-Igbodo Road.

The Etche leaders who lauded the effort of the State Government to daulise the road said Governor Nyesom Wike has demonstrated that he understands the basic needs of their ethnic nation.

They said that if the Federal Ministry of Works is interested in patching existing federal roads in the area, they should turn their attention to the Omoku- Omerelu – Okehi – Omuma Federal Road which is in dire need of rehabilitation.

The Etche people said the dualization of the Chokocho – Igbodo Road that provides major access to the area which has been awarded by the State Government is what they want.

Angry youths had a couple of days ago asked the contractor engaged by the Federal Ministry of Works to patch the road to discontinue its effort.

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The youths said on that occasion that they were in support of the decision by the Rivers State Government to daulize the road.

Charles Nwonuala, President General, Ogbakor Etche 

The ethnic nation under the umbrella of Ogbakor Etche has repeatedly in the past urged FERMA to do something to save the decaying road.

President General of Ogbakor Etche, Charles Nwonuola recalled during the meeting, how several appeals made to FERMA had fallen on deaf ears.

Now that help is coming from the State Government, Etche people believe that what is playing out is a ploy in some quarters to deny them an opportunity to benefit from the magnanimity of Governor Wike whom they say is busy opening up the entire State.

The argument as things are is whether the Etche nation is willing to retain a single track road patched by the federal authorities.

The mood of the Etche people suggest that they would rather have the State Government build a dual carriage.

The Etche people are also saying at this time that anyone who is in support of the “patch-work” project that is going on instead of the road modernization program of the Rivers State Government is an enemy.

The Port Harcourt Telegraph has learnt that the value of the maintenance work planned by the Federal Government is valued at slightly over N600 million.

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But the dualization project which is expected to speed up development in the area would cost about N14 billion to achieve.

The State Government is projecting to  complete the conversion of the road into an exressway in 14 months.

Already, the Rivers State House of Assembly has approved funds for the dualization project which is expected to be commissioned by the State Government before it leaves office.