Raymond Ozoji, Awka
Amudo village in Ekwulobia, Aguata local government area of Anambra state, was one of the victims of 2019 flood disaster in Anambra. That excruciating experience is one sad memory the villagers wouldn’t call to mind because they had accepted their fate and took solace in the notion that someday, nature will intervene and salvage their pitiable conditions.
Due to incessant flooding in the community whenever it rained, erosion descended on the village pathways and other roads like a vulture descending on its prey; thereby tearing them apart and making flood waters flow freely into the houses of the villagers, leaving them with no other option but to flee from their houses. Such was the state of melancholy at Amudo village, prior to the intervention by Hon. Okechukwu Okoye, the lawmaker representing Aguata 2 state constituency in the Anambra State House of Assembly.
The lawmaker said, “I shed tears sometime in August last year when there was a heavy rain fall and it caused a lot of damages, pulled down houses, killed lots of livestock in families. I shed tears when I visited the scene at Amudo village and decided to proffer a lasting solution to it.
“I had to construct a very solid drainage system for them to make sure that the flood is channelled properly instead of moving into peoples’ houses, killing their livestock, which is the source of their livelihood. So they were very happy that the drainage was constructed and equally expressed their heartfelt gratitude that never again would they abscond from their homes because of flood.”
Okoye who said that it cost him about N4 million to single-handedly construct the water way and also save the lives and property of his constituents, disclosed further that, in addition to the drainage, it is of paramount importance to use one’s office or position to improve the living conditions of people better than the way they were.
The lawmaker, who functions as the chairman House of Assembly Committee on Information and Public Enlightenment, said it was the desire to build on human infrastructure that prompted him also to renovate community secondary school Isuofia, where he observed that the structure was on the verge of collapse and no longer befitting for the students.
The lawmaker said, “A student will sit on his table and touch the ceiling. How could one find such a situation in Anambra state? It’s ugly to me and I have commenced repair works in the school. By next week, the height of the ceilings would have increased as well as completion of other remedial works on the school.
There is another school called Igboukwu Girls’ Secondary School in my constituency. We will also carry out renovations there but one project at a time. I am also constructing another drainage at Ekwulobia to control flood there.”
The lawmaker said he has a motion to present to the state assembly, calling on relevant authorities to expedite the process of constructing the road connecting Ikenga-Igboukwu-Ekwulobia , stressing that Ikenga is the only community in his constituency without a tarred road.
He therefore recalled that he had assured his constituents that his stewardship at the state assembly would be anchored on representation by consultations. This maxim, according to him, aided him in understanding the most pressing needs of his constituents. To this end, the lawmaker empowered some youths with career talks and also helped them secure admissions.
Okoye said he empowered some of his constituents, who learnt how to make clothes but didn’t have the machines and materials to establish themselves, with sewing machines to enable them to set up their own enterprise and be self-reliant. Apart from those he gave sewing machines, he said others got salon equipment to start their own businesses, stressing that the welfare and well-being of his constituents in Aguata 2 were his primary concerns and would continue to pursue it vigorously through effective representation at the state assembly in order to improve on the living conditions of his people.