Owerri City Roads: Call for state of emergency

Residents and visitors to the Imo State capital Owerri go through an agonizing Odyssey as they wend their way to their destinations on a daily basis.
Business, of any type, slowly grinds to a halt because traders, artisans, buyers and indeed, mere passersby as well as tourists cannot manoeuver across the marshy tracts and gullies that have replaced the roads and streets that once stood Owerri out as the cleanest city in the country.
The network of roads was further boosted when Governor Rochas Okorocha stormed into Douglas House in 2011 with a messianic zeal to make a difference with his RESCUE mantra.
In a question of weeks and months, even before the celebration of his 100 days in office, Owelle won the hearts of Imo people by opening up new roads within the old city and even more so across New Owerri.
Until Governor Okorocha took office, who, but the staff members of the professional unit of the Ministry of Lands, Survey and Urban Development, knew that a road existed between old Imo Hotel and Nworie River environs?
Whoever thought of the three parallel inland roads leading to the general direction of Concord Hotel from old Owerri, thus easing vehicular traffic from Aba road, Mbaise/Umuahia Road, even Port Harcourt and Orlu roads until Okorocha opened up the inland roads?
Now, unfortunately, most of these roads have become inaccessible since the Governor’s Urban Renewal policy took the centre stage.
There is a virtual lockdown of Owerri as entry into the city, in ALL directions, has almost been blocked.
Historic Douglas Road is now unmotorable.
Wetherel Road (wrongly called Whethral) is in shambles with a ravine wrought at the critical School Road/MCC Road junction.
When it is flooded, it becomes a practice spot for Triple Jump as pedestrians attempt to avoid plunging into the non-flowing river. Disabled vehicles – big and small – lie drunkenly on several spots along the road.
Whoever conjured up the idea of widening and excavating the city roads and streets have done great injustice to the image of the Recue government of Governor Okorocha in the twilight of his eight-year governorship of Imo State.
But there is yet a way out.
He should today declare a STATE OF EMERGENCY on the roads and streets of Owerri.
This will give him a leeway to appropriate funds through an urgent request from the House of Assembly to embark on immediate restoration of at least the major arteries of the city’s network of roads.
Okorocha should not allow his legacy to be mired in the mud of his capital’s roads.
We plead for a speedy action on these roads.   Owelle, there is the urgent need to put smiles back on the faces of Imo people.  We will continue to pray for you.

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