Critical Stakeholders Converge On Mayor’s Country Home, Give Road Map For Development Of Ukwa West

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Some critical Stakeholders in the Ukwa West Local Government Area of Abia, on Tuesday converged on Ogwe Town to deliberate on the ways to ensure massive development of the oil-rich area.

The meeting, which was at the instance of the Mayor of Ukwa West LGA, Mr. Newman Azuh, xrayed various developmental challenges of Ukwa, and how to surmount them.

Welcoming the Stakeholders, Azuh thanked the Abia State Governor, Dr. Alex Otti for finding him capable of managing the affairs of the local government area, adding that he had lived almost all his life as a private individual.

Ukwa West Mayor, Newman Azuh with the NDDC Commissioner, Chief Eruba Dimgba

He said the purpose of the meeting was to reach a consensus on the strategies to move the area forward, stressing that Ukwa West had long been shortchanged in the scheme of things in Abia State.

In their presentations, the stakeholders asked the Mayor to maintain consultations, as a continuum to drive good governance.

On the issue of security, it was suggested that one police station was needed in each of the three zones in Asa, while an Area Command should be situated at the LGA headquarters.

Abia State Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Philemon Asonye Ogbonna

The meeting harped on the need to deepen the LGA internally generated revenue by leveraging the revenue laws and making sure companies and business firms in the area comply with tax and royalty payments, adding that a University or Polytechnic of Petroleum Resources was needed in Ukwa, being an Oil Producing area.

The forum also highlighted the following:

1. The Mayor to visit the political Wards to ascertain their challenges,

2. the presence of the Police or Army at the Council headquarters to protect the facilities around the area, particularly the General Hospital,

3. synergy among the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Abia State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, ASOPADEC, and the Mayor of Ukwa West.for scholarships, upgrading and rehabilitation of some public primary and secondary schools to special institutions with modern facilities.

Other issues raised ranged from the fight against indulgence in drugs by the youths, securing employment opportunities for the youths through meaningful engagement of the companies operating in the area, regular engagement with the people.

The Stakeholders also identified the urgency of the Ukwa West Local Government Council to open up talks with Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs to convert its facility at Owaza to a Polytechnic, a standard health Centre at each Ward and the rehabilitation of old ones for greater efficiency.

Former SSG, Abia State, Pastor Ralph Egbu

Continuing they advised the Mayor to always ensure that the local government monitored the quality of roads and other infrastructure through Committees, noting that the era where roads constructed in the area by interventionist Agencies had been poorly executed should be a thing of the past.

The meeting was attended by the NDDC Commissioner, Chief Eruba Dimgba, member representing Ukwa West State Constituency, Hon. Godwin Anyamagiobi Adiele, the Commissioner for Environment, Hon. Philemon Asonye Ogbonna, former Secretary to the Abia State Government, Pastor Ralph Egbu, immediate past President General of Asa Development Union, ADU, Associate Prof. Onwubiko Dike, Dr. Samuel Eze Chima Nwosu, Barrister Munachiso Nwosuegbe and Dr. Lucky Eleogu.

Others were former Vice Presidential Candidate if the YPP, Dr. Kasarachi Enyinna, Chief Dans Blessings Adokiye, former Senatorial Candidate, APP, Mr. Signor Kanu, former Commissioner, Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission, OMPADEC (now defunct), Prince Eme Nwosu, Oliver Nwuju, Dr. Chimezie Enyioko, Prof. Mgbechi Ogbuji and others.

The event was anchored by the Chairman of Newsportal Limited, Mr. ThankGod Ntaku.

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