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Enugu State: APC Condemns Gov Mbah Demolition Drive In Enugu State - Politics - Nairaland

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Enugu State: APC Condemns Gov Mbah Demolition Drive In Enugu State by Ikeczar(m): 3:03pm On Jun 06
MBAH’S ILL CONCIEVED DEMOLITION SPREE IS ECONOMIC TERORISM ON THE PEOPLE OF ENUGU STATE: A STATEMENT BY THE ALL PROGRESSIVES CONGRESS (APC) ENUGU STATE.

1. Good afternoon gentlemen and ladies of the press. As you are aware for one year we did not comment on the worrisome activities of the Peter Mbah’s government because as citizens of the state and major stakeholders in the Enugu project we want every government to succeed, as the success of every government irrespective of the party that brought it into office will be enjoyed by us all and generations unborn.

2. Another reason why we have not commented on the activities of the Peter Mbah led government is because we know the government is battling with a widely perceived sense of illegitimacy, because he is widely believed not to have won the legitimate votes cast even though he was declared by INEC and confirmed by the judicial authorities. So we did not want to heat up the system knowing that he may find it difficult to rule this state if we unleash the weapon of opposition against his obviously debilitated government.

3. The third reason was that under President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, revenue allocation to all States and local government areas have increased exponentially to the extent that Enugu States monthly allocation have tripled making this present Mbah government the highest recipient of federal allocation since the creation of Enugu State. It is an empirical fact that from May 29th 2023 to May 29th 2024, Peter Mbah’s government has received not less than N 475,963,652,019 Billion Naira only. The breakdown is as follows; Federal allocation to the State is 147,778,456,610.09, Local Government Allocation: 64,185,195,409.01,Infrastructure allocation: 34,000,000,000,State IGR not less than: 60,000,000,000,Loans: 170,000,000,000. Making it a total of Four hundred and seventy five billion, Nine hundred and sixty three million, six hundred and fifty two thousand, and nineteen kobo.

4. We felt that we should not heat up the system because with the humongous allocation which is almost three times what the previous governments received we felt that any serious government with such a bumper revenue will surely succeed. With this revenue we expected that Gov. Peter Mbah should have built at least 2,500 kilometres of roads having covenanted in his manifesto that he will construct 10,000 kilometres of road in Enugu State within four years. 2,500 kilometres is 25% of the total road network he covenanted to build and one year is a quarter of his tenure of four years.

5. With this mind blowing funds we believed that Gov. Peter Mbah ought to have completed provision of water in Enugu city which he boasted he would complete in 180 days. With this unprecedented revenue we hoped that Peter Mbah would have at least built within this year his ill-conceived smart schools in 80 wards out of the 260 wards he covenanted to deliver in his manifesto within four years. It is also pertinent to note that the ill-conceived smart school projects is another avenue where the government of Peter Mbah is wasting billions of money to build one school per ward, whereas thousands of public schools are lying in ruins. Mbah is yet to construct any single public building in the state, yet he is busy destroying existing building and businesses constructed by individuals before he was born.

6. With this once in a lifetime revenue we felt Gov. Peter Mbah would have equipped our health institutions, built rural roads, and equipped the security agencies with the needed logistical support to secure Enugu State. There is no landmark project one can point at despite borrowing N 170 billion and increased federal allocation and IGR of N 305 billion, all totalling N 475 billion. We should also remember that when Mbah wrote his manifesto he didn’t know that revenue would triple due to fuel subsidy removal so he has no reason not to meet up with his much touted developmental plans as other states like Imo, Ebonyi and Abia states are currently doing.

7. We have always suspected that Peter Mbahs government was an unmitigated disaster but with recent developments it is now obvious to all the citizens of Enugu State.

8. However, we decided to make a press statement after one year to inform the general public that Peter Mbah’s government has failed woefully and should account to the state for the over 470 billion naira that he has collected in a year. Where is this money, where are the projects this money was used for? The state owe it as a duty to know what has happened to this humongous revenue and what it has been used for within one year of Gov. Peter Mbah’s bull in the chinaware government where his achievements is engaging in sophistry, casuistry and paralogism with intent to bamboozle the ignorant folks of Enugu State.

9. What is called “Tax” in Enugu state has become extortion of sorts under the present administration: ranging from land rent, property tax, cost of lifting a plot of land, sales tax, income tax, rates and levies. And the way government goes about collecting these taxes is brutal, including shutting down businesses that employ thousands of people.

10. However, a state of emergency that has made us to break our silence is the wanton, unbridled, callous and terrorist gestapo style destruction of private homes, private motor loading bays, over a hundred warehouses, a burgeoning industrial cluster of over 200 palm kernel processing plants, which is the biggest supplier of PKO in the entire Eastern Nigeria,10 chemical producing warehouses that were built in the fifties and sixties by the U.T.C, S.C.O.A, Chris Chemist, Maduka and Sons Ltd, Mgbemena Family and Farm Associates, Hogis Engineering Company, Dizzy Oil Co Ltd, FCMB bank, Ecobank, Onitsha south, Eastern Mass transit Co, Chisco Mass Transit, Romchi Mass Transit, Oha Community Microfinance Bank, over three hundred shops, completely destroying buildings and educational materials of Osisatech Polytechnic, the biggest and foremost Polytechnic in Enugu State despite the fact that the owner Rev Fr. Edeh got a court order stopping the demolition, the governor ignored the order as the bulldozers went ahead to level the school. The Red Cross building which houses almost a hundred motherless babies was pulled down while the babies were in the building with no alternative made for them. This sudden destruction led to the death of one baby who couldn’t survive the shock. It is only a heartless government that will pull down a building where the motherless babies were sleeping without providing an alternative habitation for them. It is alleged that not less than ten persons died during the destruction of peoples properties. Some weeks ago a decomposing body was exhumed from the debris. Only a vicious and soul-less government will destroy the training school of the civil engineering department of the Nigeria Railway Corporation, alongside ten three –bedroom flats that railway workers and some retirees were living that was built as far as 1940s. The workers of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) demonstrated and issued a seven day ultimatum to the state government to negotiate on how to replace its offices, workshops and quarters demolished or face legal action. They stated that over 21 billion Naira in property and equipment was lost by the railway alone in the demolition. It is good news to hear that the House of Representatives has ordered its Committee on Land Transport to commence investigation into the destruction and forceful takeover of properties belonging to the Nigerian Railway Corporation.

11. We would want Nigerians to note that what is going on is another land grab scheme characteristic of the ruling PDP Ebeano hegemony. This was the same tactics that was deployed by his predecessors in land grabbing the zoological parks and gardens which was destroyed in same manner and later parcellated to high ranking members of the Government, same tactics was used to take over the biggest golf course which land was grabbed and percellated to members of the government, same for Ikenga hotels, W.T.C Enugu, IMT Rectors Village, the land zoned for the building of Rangers stadium and even land meant for the conference centre which was initiated in the eighties by the Sampson Emeka Omeruah administration, this was the same tactics used to take over all ventilation and amusement parks and open spaces in Enugu city. These are heritage sites inherited from the Eastern regional government and belongs to all Igbos as Enugu wouldn’t have had all those iconic heritage sites if it was not a regional capital. This is the problem we have with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Enugu state right from time. The same PDP destroyed government reserved area. Enugu state governors past and present are the only governors that when in office they will forcefully take peoples land. It doesn’t happen in any other state in whole of South East. No investor will invest in a state where this kind of demolition takes place every so often. We still remember how Entraco was used in enriching government officials. All transport companies set up by the Federal, States and LGAs have all failed woefully. In Enugu we know how the resources of coal city shuttle, Entraco, Coal city taxi, were all failed government initiatives in transport that ended up enriching the government officials.

12. This is pure economic and ill-conceived hare brained project which is a product of a government with shallow intellect masquerading in yahoo sophistry which cannot stand intellectual inquisition, whose purpose simply is to control the resources that will accrue from the state controlled transportation system. The destroyed area was the recycling hub in Enugu. This place also houses private transport companies, Petrol stations, Shopping centres etc. if it is not terrorism, who destroys the oldest and biggest motherless baby’s home and orphanage in the entire South East, South-South Nigeria which is run by the Red Cross. The building is as old as Enugu town. If this is not a land grab scheme, tell me why the hub must be in the city centre, a place already congested. If this is not economic terrorism, tell me why the government will demolish the biggest private owned polytechnic in Enugu State, why the government destroyed over a hundred warehouses where almost 90% of goods valued at over one hundred billion that are sold in Ogbete are warehoused.

13. It is important to inform you that part of modern urban renewal fundamental principles is that whenever human, economic and living development catches up with a major market or transport hub, such markets and hubs are relocated to the outskirts of the city. It may be necessary to inform us all here that the present Main market was sited here by colonial authorities in 1929 because here was the outskirts of Enugu in those days. Even the New market was sited in 1975 to its present site which again was deliberately positioned at the entrance of the city, so it is obvious the current government is not genuine in its schemes and project. When the then government in 1975 wanted to pull down and rebuild the Main market they moved the traders to a relief market which is the present day New market. Enugu is already bursting with population explosion, and traffic congestion and urgently needs decongestion, which means that new projects should move to new areas or satellite towns. Like experts counselled, Enugu state government should have known that the focus of modern theory and practice of development is on the development of new satellite towns as a means of much needed urban decongestion, optimization of public utilities and ecological maximization. It is inconceivable for anybody to leverage on an over one hundred year old colonial city Enugu to implement a prototype of Dubai transportation blueprint. Enugu had the best master plan in Nigeria, but successive PDP governors have not re-evaluated the master plan but have continuously and consistently bastardized the master plan.

14. I have been an advocate of thoroughbreds with strong intellectual and moral standing elected into the office of the Governor of Enugu State. The people should not be elected on the basis of wealth acquisition especially when such acquisitions are questionable. Nowhere in the world do you carry out such projects without implementing the principles of (T.O.D) otherwise called Transit oriented development which is aimed at bringing all commercial activities, buildings, public space together and connecting them to a near excellent transit service to every part of the city. If the principles of T.O.D had been implemented the government would not even think of building the biggest transportation hub opposite the biggest market in the city. This will lead to congestion and a calamitous traffic bottleneck. The intellectual emptiness of the Peter Mbah led government is reflected in this ill-conceived project that seek to apishly imitate other landmark projects by other government and in this instant, the Lagos state government. The Lagos state government transport hubs are well thought out projects that conform to all the principles of Transit Oriented Development (T.O.D). How can you destroy entire markets at Ogige in Nsukka, Gariki and Abakpa markets without first providing relief markets? It is akin to sentencing the citizens to sudden death. How can siting a motor park and destruction of livelihood of the tens of thousands of your citizens be for the greater good? When has the business of parks become the business of government, in this modern time governments are running away from running transport companies, this government is planning to set up a transportation hub, is it his business? Transport hubs have been organized by private people since the end of civil war and they have been doing better than the ones government set up. The people of Enugu state must condemn these nefarious act and use constituted means to stop the perennial grabbing of peoples land by the present government.

15. We call on the House of Reps to invoke its powers to set up an administrative panel of inquiry to stop this land grabbing scheme and make sure commiserate compensation is paid to not only land owners of destroyed properties but also those whose businesses were destroyed. It is important that a national public inquiry be set by the House of reps to stop the impunity going on in Enugu and make sure that the governor is held responsible for desecrating the constitutional rights of the citizens to own property and carry on their lawful businesses. We also call on those whose businesses were destroyed to seek redress and make sure they get commensurate compensation for their destroyed businesses and we pledge to fully support them. Enugu citizens should not tolerate this show of unbridled dictatorship, impunity and wickedness.

16. The demolition of Holy Ghost/Railway/Okpara avenue axis, Gariki Market, Abakpa Market and Ogige Market in Nsukka had led to untold financial and psychological hardship on affected families, economic decline due to loss of revenue and jobs, deteriorating living conditions characterised by increased poverty, social unrest, increased crime and loss of goods and services.

17. Gov. Mbah must not demolish other planned areas, parks and market marked for demolition. Government must carry out cost benefit analysis before embarking on a destructive project, if indeed, it’s for the people.

18. We know that the state government will unleash its (social) media Rottweilers after every critical voice in the state but that will not deter us from speaking from time to time. Enugu state is bigger than any one individual.

Signed

The Hon Barr Ugochukwu H. Agballah
Chairman, APC Enugu State.

Re: Enugu State: APC Condemns Gov Mbah Demolition Drive In Enugu State by christejames(m): 3:11pm On Jun 06
Even though Peter Mba get some skosko for him head, what gives this irritating party the moral justification to open their putrid facial cavity to criticise another person? undecided

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Re: Enugu State: APC Condemns Gov Mbah Demolition Drive In Enugu State by overdrive(m): 3:50pm On Jun 06
Nna eh Peter Mba no try at all.the wanton destruction of people's properties is unprecedented.

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