———-By Akpos Oghenetega————
The people of Ayakoromo community in Burutu local government area, Delta State have slated Tuesday 30th 2017 to embark on a massive protest over the long abandoned Ayakoromo/Egbo-Ede Bridge project by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa’s administration.
The protest which will be carried out in phases is set to begin at Ayakoromo, will end at Government House Gate, Asaba after which they shall mobilize all affected communities to be at daggers drawn in 2019 should Governor Okowa refuse to listen.
In a communiqué issued at the end of a closed door meeting held in Ayakoromo yesterday and signed by Comr. Austin Ozobo, President, Comr. Asiayei Enaibo, Secretary and two others, on behalf of Coalition of Civil Society Groups, they noted the bridge if completed will connect over 30 communities in Burutu, Bomadi and Ughelli South local government areas.
They lamented the silence of Governor Okowa over the abandoned bridge project through numerous letters stockpiled at the governor’s office, adding that they have come to conclusion that the Ayakoromo/Egbo-Ede bridge project is a foregone issue in Okowa’s administration which perhaps is their best 2017 May 209th political gift.
“We wish to inform Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of our intention to embark on a peaceful protest in accordance with the laws of the land. Our resolve to embark on such peaceful protest is premised on the fact that your administration has seemingly abandoned the Ayakoromo/Egbo-Ide bridge project in Burutu LGA which was awarded by your predecessor.
They stated further that; “We are aware of the fact that you promised Burutu people during your electioneering campaign in 2015 that your administration would take the project as one of its priority projects and ensure speedy completion when you assumed office.
“We are surprised after two years of stewardship; you have vehemently refused to give the project a deserving priority attention. Our suspicion became crystallized when you deliberately omitted the Project from the state’s budgets in two consecutive years notwithstanding the series of appeals from the various communities’ leaders to your government”.
“In pursuance of the above, we the coalition of concerned Civil Society Groups in collaboration with the beleaguered riverine communities decided to register our grievances to the world in peaceful protest at the Project site at Ayakoromo town in Burutu LGA on May 30, 2017. As law abiding citizens with oriented policies of non-violence approach, our peaceful demonstration will be conducted in most conducive manner under the leaderships of the following groups”.
Those all expected to join the protest include; leadership of Ayakoromo Activists Forum, Ijaw People Development Initiatives (IPDI), Foundation for Human Rights and Anti-Corruption Crusade (FHRACC),Concerned Ijaw Transformation Ambassadors (CITA), Committee for Rural Development Movement (CRDM), Concerned Ayakoromo Citizens (CAC) and Representatives of the Various Riverine Communities being affected.