Emmanuel Ugwu-Nwogo in Umuahia
The people of Amokwe Amiyi and Oguduasa communities in Isuikwuato Local Government of Abia State have been gripped by fear of losing their homes to erosion menace as heavy downpour continues.
The panic mode was activated after a Chinese construction firm stopped work on the Abia State University/Ahaba Imenyi Road awarded by the federal government for reconstruction.
It was gathered that the Chinese firm abandoned the road project due to poor funding, after excavating much of the road preparatory to grading phase.
Residents of the area said that with the top soil already removed their community “has been exposed to erosion threats of unimaginable proportion”.
A prominent member of Amokwe Amiyi community, Senator Emma Nwaka told THISDAY that his community was already sitting on edge because “the flood speed is so high whenever it rains”.
“It is sad that the construction firm, knowing that they were going to stop work due to poor funding, went ahead to remove existing (old) asphalt on that stretch of the road,” he said.
Nwaka, who is a former governorship aspirant, explained that, having dug up the topsoil, the construction firm inevitably “exposed the sub soil to the vagaries of weather at the height of the rainy season”.
To compound the problem, Amokwe Amiyi is naturally prone to erosion due to the sandy nature of the soil and its sloppy topography.
“If this (high speed flood) continues unabated, the community stands the risk of being washed away,” he lamented.
“To make matters worse, the construction company abandoned the drainage system they are building half-way, which if it was completed, could have mitigated the flood problem,” Nwaka added.
He called on Hon. Amobi Ogah, the member representing Isuikwuato/Umunneochi Federal Constituency in the National Assembly to draw the attention of the federal government to the impending disaster.
According to him, the lawmaker should mount pressure on the federal government to release funds to the contractor to return to site and complete the road project.
Nwaka said that the save our souls (S.O.S) message from his people should be treated with the promptness it deserved “to save Amokwe Amiyi and Oguduasa, all in Isuikwuato from being washed away”.