Operators of small-scale businesses in rural communities across Edo State have commended the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration for the spread of infrastructural projects to their communities, which have opened up economic opportunities for the people.
A cross-section of business operators, who spoke to journalists, said the road projects have eased movement of people and farm produce, connected communities and enlivened the business space for economic growth.
The operators noted that numerous road projects constructed through the Edo State Employment and Expenditure for Results (SEEFOR) programme, in their communities have improved socioeconomic activities.
Speaking to journalists, traders in Uromi, Esan North East Local Government Area, said he road projects are coming after years of neglect by past governments, adding that he Governor Obaseki-led administration has changed the narrative.
A trader along Akpasubi Street, Philomena Oseh, said, “We are really happy for the construction of this road. It has provided conducive environment for us to trade. Before now, many persons could not afford to own a store here because of the terrible nature of the road. Governor Obaseki has done well for us. The road is now very good. God bless Obaseki for constructing the road.”
Another resident and hair stylist, Oziegbe Paul, noted that the construction of the road linking Afuda and Convent Roads has opened up the area for business, adding, “After the road was constructed, my salon has continued to attract customers.”
The completed road project on Oboh Street in Uromi, constructed with side drains, according to the residents came with several socioeconomic benefits.
Pastor Steven Ogu, a resident in the area, said the road is an evidence that the days when Esan people were deprived of the dividends of democracy are over, noting, ‘We want to thank the governor. We are happy to have this kind of good road in this community.”
He said the road connecting Afuda and Mission Road provide easy access to the market square, adding, “It has opened up the area for business, so that farmers can move their produce to the market for sales.”
Residents in Irulele Road linking Uromi to Ubiaja in Esan South East also had glowing words for the governor.
A resident, Paul Agbai noted, “This is not the only road Governor Obaseki has completed in Esan North East LGA. The governor is doing his best to make sure Edo State moves forward in the area of road infrastructure, education reforms, job creation and entrepreneurship.”
Residents of the agrarian community of Ekekhen, one of the economic hubs of Igueben LGA, are also counting the gains of the access road to the community constructed by the Obaseki-led administration.
One of the farmers, Anthony Iyere said, “Ekekhen is an economic area with a large number of peasant farmers. This road has provided us with the chance to take our produce easily from the farm to markets in other towns across the state.”
A youth leader in the community, Henshaw Ehimhe, said, “The road is very important to us. It connects different parts of the town.”