By Harry Awurumibe, Editor Abuja Bureau
Disturbed by the heavy flooding which has submerged four local government areas in his domain, Anambra state Governor, Willie Obiano, Tuesday, stormed the Presidential Villa Abuja to brief President Muhammadu Buhari on the matter.
Aside the flood menace, Obiano also updated the President on the progress made on the 2nd Niger Bridge project which he said the contractors are in dire need of fund to procure some of the important equipments needed to complete the project.
The Governor who spoke to State House Correspondents after the closed door meeting with President Buhari revealed he and his host discussed a whole lot of other important state issues.
“Good afternoon gentlemen of the press. As usual, I come once in while to brief Mr. President on the developments we are having in Anambra state and we do have a lot of beautiful developments. We also have some that bothered me to come right now, which is the flood.
“Four of my local governments, that is four out of 21 are under water now as we speak because of this flood and it affected a lot of things, properties which include farm produce and what have you. So, I called on Mr. President to assist us at this very crucial time being a covid time and now, the flood we are experiencing this time around is like 2012 which is terrible.
“So, he promised to do something immediately. I did also apprise him on the progress so far made on the 2nd Niger Bridge. If you watch from their side, you will see that almost half of that bridge has been done. But because the water level is very high, the contractor working in that bridge requires some equipment which they’ve already purchased long ago sitting in Germany and requires some support from Central Bank to be able to bring in those equipment. I did mention that to him and the President noted that and said he will do something about that.
“The other point was on the Federal University of Education in Aguleri. Anambra North Senatorial District does not have any federal institution at all. Other two senatorial districts have two or three federal institutions. The place is part of the place I just told you that is flooded – Anambra West, Anambra East, the whole of Anambra West is under water now, half of Anambra East is under Water, Ogbaru area is under water. All these are majorly Anambra North. So, the Senate graciously approved and wrote to Mr. President to assent to the bill that they passed. This letter was written 19th September 2019. So, Mr. President has agreed to quickly acquiesce to that so that this institution can move on.
“On my own, I’ve paid compensation to the land owners and I’ve started the fencing of the massive property that is. And am doing the gatehouse of the institution. All I require is Mr. President’s support by acquiescing to the recommendations of the Clerk of the National Assembly on 19th September 2019.
“What else did I discuss with Mr. President? I touched on so many things, I don’t have to tell you everything. You know he’s a father. So, we discussed some family issues. But beyond that, it was a pleasant outing with him this evening.
“We did discuss some other roads, federal roads that are in very bad shape, about six of them and I requested Mr. President to see if they can go into their budget as they prepare for the budget of next year, to see whether those roads can go into their budget.
“I did also talk to him that work has slowed down almost to zero on the Onitsha-Enugu expressway. I understand there are little issues, I don’t know what it is but he also promised to look into that.
“Mr. President is doing well in Anambra. You know he built the Zik Masoleum that took 23 years to build, the road he’s working on, the Onitsha-Enugu expressway, he finished that road as PTF chairman and he came back as president to come and fix that road again. So, that’s an important thing to remember that he did it before and he is the fellow doing it again.
“And of course, we parlayed and what else do you want to know?, Obiano asked.
On the extent of damage in those four local governments, the second term Governor of Anambra state said, “We have over 5.000 people displaced and we already prepared some receptacles where received the displaced people. But they will been help now and also need help when the water is receding because they lost their property which majorly include their produce which was nor harvested before this flood creeped in.
“I believe Mr. President will be able to assist us to be able to support these families that have been displaced in this manner.