Alleged Land Grabbing: Abia Lawmaker, Lewis Obianyi Visits Azumini, Calls For Calm

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The member representing Ukwa-East State Constituency in Abia State House of Assembly (ABHA), Hon. Lewis Chinaemerem Obianyi, has decried the unauthorized road construction of Uzo nta in Azumini road by Akwa-Ibom State.

The Abia lawmaker who disclosed this with newsmen shortly after the inspection of over five kilometers graded portions of the road recently, lamented that many economic crops and farmland belonging to rural peasant farmers have been destroyed due to the illegal excavations on the road by Akwa-Ibom State government

In his words: “My Constituents drew my attention that the Akwa-Ibom State government through Ika Local Government Area (LGA) authorities are using tractors, to encroach deep into some part of Azumini Ndoki Community in Ukwa-East LGA of Abia state.
“From my inspection today, they have gone about 5km deep into Abia territory without any form of authorization or consent from appropriate quarters within Abia state government.
“I have contacted the Local Government Council chairman, Dame Ngozi Nwagbara PhD and she said that she’s not aware of any inter-state project”.

The Chairman, House Committee on Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Abia State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (ASOPADEC) and Ministry of Petroleum, ABHA, further alleged ulterior motives from the Akwa-Ibom State, maintaining that there was no agreement, nor Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) from both states (Abia and Akwa-Ibom states) on inter-state road construction to warrant such road grading.

The Ndoki-born politician also called on the Governor of Akwa-Ibom Pastor Umo Eno, to resist the temptation from any parochial interest group and do the right thing as a man of integrity he has been known for.

“He is a religious leader and should do everything within his powers to forestall anything that may bring inter-state conflict or crisis between Azumini Ndoki in Abia state and the people of Ika LGA of Akwa-Ibom State”, he further noted.

Hon. Obianyi called on Azumini youths to remain calm and vigilant, while the matter is being resolved.

Meanwhile, the Traditional Ruler of Azumini Ndoki, HRH Eze Prof. Ebere Eule who acknowledged that delegates from Akwa-Ibom State had earlier visited him, informing him of an inter-state road project from NDDC.

The Royal Father, said that he demanded for a detailed documentation or MoU of the project, which he explained that they never came back, but started illegal grading of Abia roads.

He called on Abia state government to intervene on the matter to avoid the ceding of some part of Azumini Ndoki into Ika LGA of Akwa-Ibom, adding that similar case of Akirika-Obu Ndoki is still a contending issue in the court.

Eze Eule who thanked the Abia lawmaker for his efforts in resolving the situation amicably, called for peace while the matter is being resolved by relevant authorities.

Contributing, a community leader in Azumini Ndoki, Chief Isaac Okoro Egege, has expressed disappointment over the development, adding that they woke up one morning only to see that their farm lands have been graded up to their residential areas without any form of information from Abia state government.

In his remark, the Vice President, Azumini Welfare Association (AWA), Mr. Felix Nwagbara who described Azumini Ndoki as a peaceful and loving people, called for a proper handling of the matter to forestall a breakdown of peace and order.

He commended Hon. Lewis Obianyi for his unwavering commitments towards ensuring the best approach is engaged in handling matter, adding that they would continue support all his endeavours.

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