FIC Report (Abia State) – Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has formally inaugurated the Abia Youths Road Maintenance Corps with a charge to them to rid Abia roads of potholes, especially those roads already completed and commissioned by his administration and institute a sustainable maintenance culture.
Inaugurating the Corps at the Governor’s Lodge Aba, Governor Ikpeazu said that the first phase covers the 6 local government areas of Aba North,Aba South, Osisioma Ngwa, Obingwa, Umuahia North and Umuahia South.
He noted that the issue of maintenance culture has become a knotty one as billions of money spent on infrastructure are often wasted due to neglect of such infrastructure soon after construction.
According to the Governor, the initiative is to bring the Youths face to face with current challenges, adding that the initiative provides an opportunity for them to help contribute to building a better Abia as future Leaders.
Governor Ikpeazu who reminded them that the assignment calls for commitment, further enjoined them to seize this platform to show that they are prepared to take up leadership.
The Governor who said that the first phase will focus on urban areas said that the next phase will cover areas like Ukwa, Ohafia, Ikwuano and Isuikwuato.
He advised the young Engineers to focus on areas that impact negatively on the people as well as to do their jobs during off peak hours including nights and Sundays.
Governor Ikpeazu promised that funds will be released periodically to enable them carry out their assignments effectively.
The Governor directed the concerned Local Government Chairmen to make available the old Public Works Department (PWD) offices located in their Councils for the use of the newly inaugurated Abia Youths Road Maintenance Corps.
He also urged Members of the Corps to immediately commence their assignments by taking stock of all the potholes within their areas of jurisdiction for proper documentation and thereafter report to the respective Local Government Chairmen.
Earlier, the Commissioner for Works, Elder Bob Chiedozie Ogu said Members of the Corps were selected from each of the 6 Local Government Areas on the basis of 7 persons per Local Government.
They pointed out that they have been certified fit having undergone theoretical and practical training adding that the initiative is a brain child of the Governor.
Highlights of the event was the hand over of construction equipment which includes Asphalt cutters, Rollers, Mini Pick up Vans fitted with Generatoling sets and Hallogen lights for night work and other basic road maintenance equipment.
The event witnessed by the Chairmen of the six Local Government Areas as well as the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Works, Engr. Okpara and the immediate past Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Elder Jacob Nwala.