Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
To the excitement of residents, Enugu State governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, recently inaugurated some internal roads in Nsukka,
Among the roads were the busy Aku and New Anglican roads. The roads, it was gathered, were constructed to ease the suffering of residents who, before now, could not access their homes or even receive visitors due to the bad condition of the roads neglected over the years by past administrations in the state.
Both roads serve as alternative corridors, especially when there is any traffic snarl along Enugu Road.
At the event, Commissioner for Works, Greg Nnaji, recalled that, despite the initial challenges in the course of construction, the construction firm, Ferotex Construction, rebuilt the road beyond the people’s expectations.
While inaugurating the roads, Ugwuanyi said the projects were a fulfilment of his administration’s pledge in its inaugural address to create more urban areas to boost economic growth and equip and modernise Nsukka. He described the community as “a university town founded many decades ago, to compete with other university towns in attracting technology and knowledge-based businesses and other industrial support ventures, bearing in mind that Nsukka is the second largest town in Enugu.”
He added that the roads would enhance connectivity and access to homes and business premises as well as the economy of the city.
The governor recalled that his administration had in its first term delivered the state-of-the-art 11.6 kilometre Opi-Nsukka dual carriageway to the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN) gate “which equally enhanced movement in and out of the university.
“This road also provided the much-needed infrastructural services to the university and showcased the first underground functional drainage system in this part of the world,” he said.
Emphasising his administration’s procurement policy of ‘start-to-finish,’ the governor said that the contracts for the internal roads were awarded to qualified contractors like Ferotex Construction Company Limited with proven and verified track records on road construction.
A public works engineer, Chuka Idoko, recalled that, sometime last year, some mischief-makers took photographs of the site of the New Anglican and Aku road barely one week after commencement of work to ridicule the contractor and the state government, alleging that shoddy work was on-going at the site.
He noted that Governor Ugwuanyi, to the disappointment of the detractors, never terminated the contract as envisaged by the actors but allowed the contractors handling the project to prove their mettle, which they eventually did.
An Nsukka resident, Chinwe Abugu, said the inaugurated road has given the area a new lease of life, adding that residents could now connect to the busy Enugu Road in Nsukka with ease.
Another resident, Clement Eze, said Ugwuanyi’s administration should be supported to continue in his resolve to open up rural communities in the state through road construction and other development projects.
Dignitaries present during the opening ceremony included Catholic Bishop of Nsukka Diocese, Most Rev. Godfrey Onah, the Enugu State chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Mr. Augustine Nnamani, members of the House of Assembly and State Executive Council.