A high-powered delegation of Eastern leaders, including socio-cultural heavyweights led by the President of the apex socio-cultural Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide organization, Ambassador Prof. George Obiozor as well as several frontline political figures like the Imo State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma, the Honourable Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu, former governor of Imo State, Ikedi Ohakim and the Minister of State, Mines, Uche Ogah, visited the 2nd Niger Bridge project site in Onitsha to see the ongoing construction works for themselves last Friday.
Other members of the delegation were Emeka Nwajiuba, Minister of State Education, former President of Ohanaeze, Chief Enwo Igariwey; Governorship aspirant of the All Progressives Congress APC, Senator Andy Uba and Chidozie Nwankwo
The eastern leaders after a comprehensive tour and satisfactory inspection of the ongoing works were united in praise and appreciation for the contractor, Julius Berger Nigeria Plc, for the emerging indomitable engineering strength and excellent quality of the bridge and its developing ancillary road works.
Manifestly impressed with the superb quality of the engineering works which the contractor Julius Berger is implementing on the project, Obiozor, the leader of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, in his speech said the people of the Southeast would continue to be grateful to the present federal government for hearkening to the needs of Ndigbo.
In the words of the cerebral and highly respected Ambassador George Obiozor: “We will remain grateful to the President Buhari administration and to the contracting firm, Julius Berger, for the good work being done”.
In his own address to members of Ohanaeze and southeast leaders present at the event, the Imo State Governor, Chief Hope Uzodinma said the Ndigbo had been begging for the second Niger Bridge since 35 years ago. While expressing the region’s leaders thanks to President Buhari, Governor Uzodinma said:
“Today is a special day in Igbo land by allowing us to take ownership of the Second Niger Bridge which our people have struggled for since 35 years ago…. What was looking like a dream is now a reality. Every country must have its hero, and I make bold to say that President Muhammadu Buhari is the hero of Ndigbo. God will keep us alive when this project will be commissioned by the APC administration of President Buhari in 2022.”
The Honourable Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu, toed the same line and said: “…the accomplishment of the Second Niger Bridge evidences a promise made and kept by the President Buhari government”.
Informing the august visitors of the immediate benefits of the ongoing project, Adeyemo Ajani, the Federal Controller of Works in Anambra State, who represented the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, said: “Over 30,000 persons had been employed at the Second Niger Bridge, with no fewer than 1,600 persons being locals”. Ajani added that: “Already, the work had reached 53.82 per cent as at January, 2021, and the completion date still remains 2022”.
There was a resounding synergy of opinion in appreciation and gratitude to President Buhari as well as certainly deserved commendation for the hardworking and visibly productive contractors, Julius Berger, by the visitors.
The National Vice President Ohanaeze, Chief Damian Okeke-Ogene as well as the Imo State House of Assembly Speaker also attended the event in Onitsha.