Gift BARIKWA, PH
President-General of Ogoni Youth Federation, OYF, Legborsi Yamabana has warned of the possibility of shutting down the Eleme axis of the East-West road again, if the government fails to fix the gory looking portions of the road.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with TNN, he said “the state of the road is worrisome and before now we had carried out series of actions, chief among the actions we have carried out was the seven days protest we did on that road that lasted from the 26th of July to the first of August in 2021 and after that protest, we were hopeful that government will actually mobilize contractors to site, but all of that hope was dashed.
“Even the equipment that they mobilize to the site during the protest, which they used to ask us to leave the road that they were ready for construction after we called off the protest, they demobilized those material back so all what we have observed up till now is deceit and lies from the government that should be more responsible to its citizens.
“That road leads to the refinery, it leads to the Indorama Petro-chemical, it leads to the Nigeria Ports Authority, it also connects to the oil and gas free zone together with over three hundred multinational companies that pays heavy taxes to government.
“This road is the most economically viable road in this country, yet it’s being left in this state and our people continue to undergo untold hardship as a result of accident at the bad state of that road.
“So we have decided to take our destiny into our hands as young people. As I speak with you, we are in consultation with tanker drivers and other critical stakeholders. We may return to that road for the season 2 of that protest any time soon because we cannot bear this anymore and you also remember that the rains are coming.”
Legborsi lamented that “why government has not fixed that road it’s still a question begging for answer from the Ogoni people and the people of Niger Delta because of the importance of that road and government this time if they are not ready to fix the road, they should forget about their asset along that axis.
“Mind you, government is rehabilitating a refinery in Ogoni in Alesa Eleme that the road leads to, with the sum of $1.5billion, while this road will not cause up to N100 billion to fix and yet government has refused to fix it and subject our people to this level of hardship.
“East-west road is very lengthy; they have done other parts but when it gets to the Ogoni part and some Mbiama part in Bayelsa and Ahoada, you will see some sections that are being left undone and the reason is that government has not been very sincere to us and I have told you about this section of the road that has been abandoned. This is a section that should have been done first because it’s very critical to the economy of this nation.”
“The reason why they have left that place undone till today is a poser to all of us from this axis. We are worried and we are calling on other Nigerians to stand up in solidarity with us.”