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Umahi suspends work on Ebonyi road project over insecurity

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GOVERNOR Dave Umahi has suspended work on a road project along the Ring Road in Ohaukwu Local Government Area of the state for seven days over security threats.

Umahi disclosed this to journalists at the end of an expanded security meeting held at the new Government House in Abakaliki.

Gunmen had on November 6 abducted five construction workers handling the project.

The firm, Neclan Construction Company, has since petitioned the Inspector- General of Police, over the abduction of its workers.

The governor said the activities on the site would be put on hold for seven days to enable the government to address the problem of insecurity in the area.

He also threatened to shut down any of the ring roads project sites where the security of construction workers and equipment were being threatened.

Umahi said: “Activities on the site are suspended for seven days to enable me clear the issue of security. If the stakeholders fail to abide by what we said, the job will be terminated. I cannot be here and guarantee the security of the lives of the people I am putting on-site; they have to give me that commitment.

“It is just that we don’t listen. We could have had this kind of meeting much earlier before now, and we said for any site to resume, there should be this kind of commitment, and the contractors should have insisted on this commitment from the locals.

“Nobody is coming from outside to attack. So far, we have not had a record of insecurity in the axis of 135/Ezza North, Ezza North to Ezza South-Ikwo-Abakaliki-Izzi-Ebonyi LGAs. Where we believe we have problems will be the axis of Effium in Ohaukwu LGA.

“The entire Ring road project is being threatened and I will be willing to shut down any of the sections that will not comply with my directive today.”

The governor demanded an affidavit from stakeholders hosting sections of the projects in their various communities.

“I need an affidavit from all the traditional rulers; town union presidents, chairmen of the local government, and coordinators where the roads are passing.

“The affidavit is to be crafted by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) and the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice.

“The affidavit will be that they will take responsibility for the security of the contractors, consultants, everyone involved in the discharge of their duties and also their equipment,” he added.

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