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PENGASSAN decries deplorable condition of East-West road, seeks government intervention

PENGASSAN decries deplorable condition of East-West road, seeks government intervention
August 06
10:09 2022

Oil workers under the aegis of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) have expressed concerns over the deplorable state of the Eleme section of the East-West road in Rivers state.

Peter Onita, zonal chairman of PENGASSAN, said this in a recent interview with journalists in Port Harcourt, the state capital.

He said the economic value of the area was gradually dwindling as lots of companies were beginning to leave the area due to the road’s poor condition.

“The negative effect of that road to the state and the country cannot be quantified. That road harbours companies, Onne seaport, Notore Fertiliser Plant, Port Harcourt Refinery, Indorama, Oil and Gas Free Zone, where we have a lot of servicing companies, and they are major contributors to the economy,” he said.

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“The sad thing now is many companies are pulling out, and it is not good for our economy.”

Onita said the situation was “worrisome” that one year after the federal government claimed to have commenced the rehabilitation of the section of the road, it was still in its worst state.

According to him, millions of naira is being lost on daily basis due to a decline in manpower as people spend six to eight hours trying to navigate their way through the road to their various businesses and offices.

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“It is precisely one year now since youths of Ogoni went on a protest on the Eleme axis of that road. Recall that before that protest, PENGASSAN as a zone had issued statements on the need for the federal government to complete that project,” Onita said.

“It is worrisome that one year after, when senator Godswill Akpabio, then minister of the Niger Delta affairs gave assurances that that job will progress, the condition of the road is worse.

“The danger in that road is better imagined, and we are concerned that the promise made has not been fulfilled. We want to use this medium to call on the government to, as a matter of necessity, commence the construction of the road as they promised.

“Lives are being lost, economic manpower is being lost, journey of 10 to 15 minutes, now takes one-two hours or more, which is not ideal for an economy that wants to grow”.

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