The multi-million Naira Federal Government erosion control project at Udi Local Government Area, Enugu State which was abandoned about 10 years has now been commissioned.
The Obinagu /Akpulu/Enugueze-Umunneobagu Soil Erosion and Control Project Phase 1, which was executed through the Ecological Fund Office had suffered several delays before it was completed late last year.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony in Obinagu yesterday, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Bachir David Lawal said the completion of the project was made possible due to President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption war.
Lawal was represented on the occasion by the Director General of the Voice of Nigeria, VON, Mr. Osita Okechukwu Okechukwu who recalled that project which began over seven years ago, suffered several delays as a result of logistic problems, difficulty of the terrain and unbridled corruption, before it was successfully completed late last year.
“Today marks a milestone in the history of Ecological Fund Office (EFO) as we commission the Obinagu/Akpulu/Enugueze-Umunneobagu Soil Erosion and Control Project, a product of President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to finish all abandoned projects.
“It is pertinent to observe that this project is among the 15 ecological projects in the South East geo-political zone initiated by the Federal Ministry of Environment inherited by the present regime which received Presidential approval and was funded by EFO.
“This project which began over 10 years ago, suffered some delays as a result of logistic problems, difficulty of the terrain and unbridled corruption, however was successfully completed late 2016.
“This commissioning/handing over of the project could not be done earlier than now, because of the reasons stated above. Glory be to God that it could be said that without President Buhari’s raging war against corruption this commissioning and handing over ceremony may not be taking place today” Okechikwu said.
The VON boss however commended the Enugu State Government, especially Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi,, the Chairman Udi LGA, Ecological Fund Office of Federal Ministry of Environment, the contractor, Messers Nostro Ventures Limited and the consultant, Messers Carsul Limited for their immense contributions and cooperation during the execution and eventual completion of the project.
He also asked the benefiting communities – Obinagu, Akpulu, Enugueze-Umunneobagu to guard the project jealously by ensuring that the drainages were kept clean and devoid of dumping of refuse.
In his response, the Commissioner for Water Resources, Enugu State, Chief Charles Egumgbe commended the Federal Government for executing the erosion control project in Obinagu, saying it was in line with the efforts of the state government to ensure that people living in erosion prone areas did not suffer.
The contractor who handled the project, Uche Dick Usouwa of Nostro Ventures Limited recalled that the contract was awarded to his company in 2010 but work started in 2011 and was completed late 2016.