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Infrastructure Development: Group Scores Governors Low

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A group identified as Governance Report (GR) has scored two governors from southeastern Nigeria low in areas of infrastructural development.

The governors who were scored low are the governors of Abia and Imo states.

The report was posted on governancereport.org.ng by Governance Report (GR), a research and fact-based governance organization that observes and reports activities of governments and governance across the African continent for the advancement of public good.

The platform provided a breakdown of infrastructural development in the various states in the southeast region of Nigeria.

Abia and Imo states came out very poor even as the report question why citizens from these states appear reluctant to hold their leaders accountable.

Governor Hope Uzodinma was accused of not continuing the works of his predecessor, Emeka Ihedioha since he assumed office.

Part of the report on Governor Okezie Ikpeazu stated: “The governor is in his second term and unfortunately, he is towing the path of his predecessor, former governor Theodore Oji who was a poster child of governance decay. Under their watch, Abia State has not had it rosy in the area of infrastructure.

“One major project of the current governor is a tiny flyover that he started some years back, at Osisioma in Aba, on Enugu – Port Harcourt expressway, which the contractors are experts in disappearing act, they appear for one month and disappear for six or seven months, only to re-appear and disappear again.”

On Governor Uzodinma, the report stated: “The current governor of Imo state, Senator Hope Uzodinma has been on seat for one year, following a controversial Supreme Court ruling.

“In that one year, he has not done anything significant in terms of infrastructure development in the state, from what GR saw in the state and interviews with some residents, it seems the governor has been making only promises.

“It was reported sometime last year, that the government of Imo state has awarded the construction of Owerri-Orlu and Owerri-Okigwe roads to Julius Berger, but up till now, there is no sign of any construction work on those roads.

“All the infrastructure projects, started by Emeka Ihedioha, especially in the area of roads, none were continued by the current governor.

“The governor promised that the project will be ready for commissioning by December 2020, but by our last check it does not look like the project is nearing completion.”

Commenting briefly on the report, the country representative of the group, Mr. Charles Agu submitted that their aim is to methodically monitor all aspects of governance, especially at the state level to follow the money for the furtherance of public good.

According to him, the effort is continuous and would extend to other areas as time goes on. Recall that civil servants in Imo state recently accused Governor Uzodinma of not paying their wages. The workers stated that their situation was made worse by the governor’s closure of the state secretariat in the wake of rising cases of COVID-19 in Imo state.

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