Building of Classrooms for Ekebedi was my decision based on my experience…Rep. Onuigbo
*As he commissions Block of 4- Classrooms at Community School
The Member representing Ikwuano/Umuahia Federal Constituency, Rep. Sam I. Onuigbo said he was compelled to erect a block of four-classrooms for Ekebedi Community School, Oboro, in Ikwuano LGA of Abia State, upon seeing the dilapidated learning facilities during his campaign, in the year 2015.
Speaking during the commissioning of the block of four-classrooms, at the community school, today, Monday, Rep. Onuigbo explained that the gigantic project was conceptualized by him and not solicitation, following his personal experience when he visited the area.
According to him, he and his team were drenched while taking refuge at the the school’s dilapidated building as offered by the community, during a downpour, hence he vowed to put smiles on the faces of the school and community in general, if elected into officer.
Narrating the bitter history of the school, he pointed out that: “This project was conceptualized by me based on my personal experience when I came here, as well as the circumstances surrounding our campaign in this place, in 2015. We got here, started campaigning and it started to rain, and the community said we should come into the dilapidated hall over there to continue but while we were there, the rain that beat us inside was more than the one that beat us outside.
“So, on the basis of that, I personally, on my own and without solicitation resolved that if elected, I would like to come and build a block of classrooms here. That’s why, being able to achieve this after a very long time, leaves me with a unique sense to satisfaction and accomplishment.
Meanwhile, the Legislator recalled his unhesitant move which, according to him, had prevented the contractor from making a dog breakfast of the project, a perceived ploy to deprive the people of what was accrued to them through a dubious means.
He disclosed that although Constitutional Project was designed to be a block of six- classrooms, the contractor who hijacked the contract, had earlier begun laying a foundation for a block of two classrooms but for his immediate intervention, which incidentally paved the way for the actualisation block of the erected four-classrooms.
Hear him: “In addition to that, this came as a result of what they call Constitutional Project, which is the allocation for anybody then you must put it in a project form but when the contractor was given the job, I didn’t know him; what I applied for was a block of six Classrooms with executive toilets but he came in and was building a block of two classrooms and of course, we had to stop that and ensured that he at least increased the job to a block of four-classrooms.
“Speaking further, he said, “in addition to the things that happened, this individual failed to deliver this job, leaving or making the community to start wondering whether they money was given to me but I diverted it. This building as you see it now, I completed it with my personal money and I am happy that today, we have realised this project, to enable this children use the facilities. You can see the dilapidated structures there.
“Like Chief Uzu said, this is the very first Project in this community, whether by the local government or by state or by Federal”, he informed.
In her address titled ‘A New Dawn’, Mrs. Nwaogboso Christiana Odinakachi, the Headmistress, Ekebedi Community School, Ala-Ala Oboro, commended the Lawmaker for the edifice which she admitted would provide a conducive learning and teaching environmental situated at its permanent site.
According to the Headmistress, the school which was founded in the year 1949 and located at the heart of the village now wears new looks, as she thanked the Legislator sticking to his campaign promises, while reiterating that the school has from inception, endured adequate cleanliness of the environment, as well as the pupils.
She said: “We make sure that every subject scheduled to be taught is in the time table. We make sure that our school environments are being tidied everyday.
She, however, outlined the challenges of the school ranging from lack of security, lack of lavatory, absence of decent offices, lack or portable drinking water and a generating set to operate same, computer sets, among others.
In his contribution, Comrd. Cokey Nwachukwu, Deputy chairman of Ikwuano LGA, a member of the People’s Democratic Party, who apologized for the unavoidable absence of the Chairman, Chief Steve Mpamugo, commended the Legislator for the edifice, assuring the manager of the school of the support of the Council, noting that Ikwuano is one in spite of political affiliations.
“I have listened to the Headmistress on the challenges of the school and I shall relay same to my Boss so that we can know how to help from the angle of the local government. ‘All hands must be on deck’ so that as Odozi Obodo is working, we too will be working and the House of Assembly also will be working. It’s all for the betterment of Ikwuano. It shouldn’t always be about party and it’s high time we started working together for the growth and development of Ikwuano”, he advised.
Corroborating with Onuigbo, the Prime Minister of Ekebedi, Chief Dr. Obioma Elogu reiterated that the community had been relegated to the backyard, as it has never felt the presence of Government over the years.
Highlight of the event was the presentation of song by the pupils of Ekebedi Community School, as the occasion had in attendance some political bigwigs from both People’s Democratic Party, PDP and APC across the council area such as wife of the Legislator, Pastor Princess Onuigbo, Chief Hon. Henry Ikechukwu, Ikoh, a Chieftain of the APC.
Others were His Excellency (Col.) Paul Omeruo, former Governor of Kogi state, Comrd. Chidi Mbakwe, LGA Party chairman, Hon. Owobe Ikechukwu Owobe, APC Zonal chairman, Chief Chinedu, Comrd. Chukwuemeka Nwabekee, Ex officio, teachers and staff of the school, and members of the community.