By Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
There was wild jubilation in Owerri, Orlu and Okigwe as Governor Hope Uzodinma flagged off the Owerri/Orlu and Owerri/Okigwe road promised earlier by his administration to gulp N50 billion.
The jubilant crowd rolled out drums and appeared in colourful attires singing and dancing to appreciate the gesture of the Governor.
Uzodinma in his speech during the ceremony disclosed that the roads have become necessary to enhance the economic activities of the State. According to him, previous administration has neglected the major roads but promised that his administration is here to right the wrongs of his predecessors.
He assured the people that the contract awarded to Craneburg construction company is expected to last for eighteen months. ‘These roads will be delivered on a good time, they will work day and night to give us exactly what we want,’ Uzodinma assured.
However, explaining why the contract which was earlier taunted to be handled by Julius Berger construction company was aborted said: ‘We only followed the procurement act. It states that the company that has the most responsive bid is given the contract.
‘And Craneburg I tell you is even better, they will give us quality roads and get it delivered on a good time, we hope to get your cooperation.
‘These roads are important to our people because it has been left in the hands of amateur contractors, since our late Governor, Sam Mbakwe built that road over 30 years ago, administrations after him have constantly engaged in small contractors, but today we are giving you a better one,’ Uzodinma said.
While speaking at Okigwe, Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly, Paul Emeziem, pointed out that the governor has been able to save not just travellers on the road to the State but also out of the State to Abia and other neighbouring States.
‘Everybody knows that that road has been in a terrible shape for decades, it became a death trap especially the Eke -Emele area, vehicles can spend several hours at this spot,’ Emeziem said.
Speaking also, Managing Director of the company, Gilbert Sassine, assured the governor that the road will also create employment for the people of the State for the duration of the project.