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Delta State Governor, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori, Tuesday, underscored the importance of the East-West road to the economic development of the oil rich Niger Delta Region.
Oborevwori stated this while playing host to the Senate Adhoc Committee investigating the non-completion of the East-West Road led by Senator Abdul Ningi at Government House, Asaba.
He said that the road which connects the South-South, South-East and Western parts of the country, remained in a bad state and uncompleted despite several attempts to complete the road.
The Governor said that the region which produces the highest wealth of the nation should be given better treatment by ensuring that the road was completed.
Oborevwori said: “It is my pleasure to receive the team that I have seen here today and from the presentation of the chairman, it’s obvious they are out to do something good this time.
“At times when they set up adhoc committees, it looks like a jamboree but when I went through the names on the team and seeing the name of Senator Adams Oshiomhole, I became a bit relaxed.
“The East-West road is very strategic to all of us in this region. With what we have contributed to the nation in the past and with the region contributing the highest wealth to the nation today it is proper that attention is paid to this region.
“I want to also thank the leadership of the National Assembly for deeming it feat to appoint people of high integrity and capacity into this team.
“We are also happy about this visit because in one of our National Economic Council meetings, we have agreed collectively as governors from the South-south to work on the East-West road.
“My appeal to you is that you fast track whatever investigation and inspection you are to carry out, so that by the beginning of the next dry season, work can commence on the road.
“So your coming is a good one and I know that we will enjoy a lot of benefits if the East-West road is completed because apart from oil producing states, we also have agrarian states in this region,” he said.
Earlier, Senator Ningi had told Governor Oborevwori that they were in Delta on a fact-finding mission on why subsequent administrations had failed to complete the East-West road despite the enormous funds appropriated and disbursed for the road.
He congratulated Oborevwori for his landslide victory at the polls and for hitting the ground running, adding that the Committee would ascertain the level of work so far done on the East-West Road with a view to determining whether the work done was commensurate with what the federal government had spent on the road.
He pointed out that the East West Road was a strategic and critical road infrastructure which cuts across the South South geopolitical zone of the country, adding that the road project cannot continue to suffer unnecessary delay because of its strategic importance to the economy of the people in the South South.
“It is imperative to understand that the East-West road occupies a very central nerve in this country and the Senate felt that the road has not gotten adequate attention that it deserves over time.
“We are going to take a critical exercise of the entire stretch of the road and have some discussions with stakeholders because that road should not be in this condition that it is at the moment.
“That road shouldn’t be in that condition. We believe that there is a missing link and it is our view that this committee will be able to identify the missing link so that the road would be fixed,” the Chairman of the Adhoc Committee said.