- Residents struggle with cows for drinking water from the same stream – Monarch
- It takes farmers three days to transport produce to LG headquarters for sale.
- No potable water, travelable road, electricity, or health facility.
By Ike Uchechukwu, Vanguard Newspaper
Residents of the Akwarinyi-Abu community, comprising 15 villages in Bekwarra Local Government Area, Cross River State, have cried out over their sufferings and abandonment by the government.
The natives said they do not have potable water, struggle to drink from the same stream as cows, and lack all basic amenities, including roads, electricity, and health center.
It takes at least three days, during the rainy season, for the agrarian villagers to transport palm oil, yam, groundnut, and other agricultural produce in large quantities to a bigger market at Abuochiche, the local government headquarters, for sale.
The last time the government graded a road in the area was over eight years ago, but it carried out no real earthwork, the former administrations of Mr. Donald Duke and Senator Liyel Imoke constructed two or more bridges.
Why We Drink From The Same Stream With Cows – HRM Ogbeche
The Paramount Ruler of Bekwarra, HRM Odey Ogbeche, who bemoaned the plight of the people said: “It is appalling that in this 21st Century, we still drink water from a stream, which also serves as the source of drinking water for cattle belonging to herdsmen.”
The monarch spoke when he played host to the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Sen. Sandy Onor, at his palace in Akwarinyi-Abu.
“To compound our woes, Bekwarra was disconnected from the national grid at the onset of the present State administration in lieu of the widely advertised stable power supply from Obudu Power Plant.
“Since then, we have been groping in darkness while the power lines stretching to Benue State have all been vandalized,” he added.
The monarch complained that the government has neglected his monarchy with no dividend of democracy whatsoever in the last seven years.
No Health Facility – HRH Ushie
The Clan Head of Bawo community, HRH Chief Augustine Ushie, lamented that when anyone falls ill, it is a 50/50 chance because there is no single health facility.
“We need equipped health facilities in the area. When our women/wives get pregnant, it is such a difficult time,” he said.
No Benefit In 7 Years – Oko, Resident
A worried resident, Roland Oko, said that since he grew up, the road to the community has remained horrible, and farmers spend between N3,500 and N5,000 to take their farm produce to the market for sale.
His words: “Now, motorcycle fare is just N500, but during the rainy season, you spend N1,500 to N2,000 to get to the river where you have the mini-bridge. To cross over to the other side on a canoe is N2,000, then you pay another N1,500 to continue the journey.
“Sometimes, we wish it does not rain, but what about our crops? We, therefore, need a messiah that can take us out of the woods. We are really suffering, and we hope the next political dispensation favors our people because, in the last seven years, we have had no benefits.”
Again, They Want To Trick Us – Onyung, A Citizen
John Onyung, who dubbed the decrepit pathway ‘internet road’, said: “We have now come to understand that they use it for campaigns only. As we speak, they have brought caterpillars again to deceive us, but our people are wiser now. We will not fall for that gimmick; it is old and will not work anymore.”
We Will Construct The Road In 2 Years If – Sen. Onor
The senator representing the Central Senatorial District, Sen. Sandy Onor, who is also the PDP governorship candidate, in response, said: “I will not promise what is beyond me, I will not lie to you, I will only promise what I can deliver, but I am certain that our administration will construct your road within two years in office.
“But, before then, we will also make sure we put a lot of other things in place. Our major target is to meet your needs and ensure we make you happy, as it ought to be by providing basic-social amenities, and not things we know we cannot finish. Every project we will embark on must serve the people,” he asserted.