Tobi Soniyi in Abuja
Members of Dozie Mezie Owerri, a political pressure group has cleared the mountain of refuse that took over parts of Owerri which the state government allegedly claimed to have left deliberately.
The group said it was saddened by the abandonment of the people by the government whose primary responsibility was to take care of and protect the people, adding that they carried out the evacuation of the one kilometre refuse dumped along Douglas road Owerri to avoid an apparent health crisis that was looming in Owerri.
Members of the group who stormed Owerri from their various bases in Abuja, Port Harcourt, Lagos with over 16 Dump trucks and four Pay loaders to evacuate the refuse which was apparently left by the Imo state Government following a High Court injunction that it from relocating the Eke Ukwu Owerri traditional Market by the indigenes of the Capital city.
The organisation made up of professionals from Owerri had met recently and pulled resources to evacuate the waste after the Chief Press Secretary of the state had in a public statement disclosed that the refuse was being dumped along Douglas road to punish the indigenes for rejecting the relocation of the traditional market to another town.
The coordinating team for the evacuation made up of Stanley Nkwazema, Tony Anyadike and Chris Anowey with other members worked round the clock to effect the evacuation.
The team who decided to work only in the night to avoid traffic chaos in Owerri which had become a nightmare driving through the once clean city, spent four days before clearing the fetid in the early hours of Friday.
The Spokesman of the Group Stanley Nkwazema said “it was a big challenge and affront to the collective minds of Owerri people, the refuse had become a serious threat to the lives of our kinsmen and decent society. We saw no need to wait anymore or even exchange words with clueless , ill-mannered people, hence no need to wait longer .
“We deployed several equipments for the task and even when we resumed the operation the state Government stopped us from using the state waste dump site. We had to open up a completely new site to ensure the job was done. The cost was really inconsequential because lives were at risk.
Dozie Owerri also stated that the clearing of the refuse which ran into several millions of Naira should not be used for political purposes by Members of the National Assembly who in a bid to garner cheap publicity ran to the site when they discovered that the evacuation was being carried out by the group.
“We saw the risk and in Igboland when a man decided to dump refuse in your fathers compound it means a lot. We have done the best thing and will not join issues with politicians’ for state Government officials”
Meanwhile, Archibishop Anthony Obinna of Catholic Archdiocese of Owerri has urged Catholics to pray for the Group after personally visiting Douglas road late night to witness the evacuation as jubilation rent the air. He said, “immediately i learnt that help has finally come from Nde Dozie , i came out here to see for myself, encourage you all and particularly thank Dozie Owerri for this great deed. We all agree that beyond being unsightly and shameful, the health hazard cannot be imagined”.