Ugwuoba  community  alleges marginalization, appeals  for  recognition, fairness, justice


People of Ugwuoba community of Oji- River Local Government Area of Enugu state have lamented long years of neglect of the area, appealing to the state Governor, Dr. Peter Mbah, all political office holders in the local government and Enugu West senatorial zone to come to the aid of the community, use their good offices and make a difference by providing basic amenities  to them, giving their sons and daughters appointments and including them in the scheme of things in the state

National  President-General of Ugwuoba Development Union,  High Chief Osita A.N.Omah, made the appeal in his address presented at the maiden edition of Ugwuoba town hall  meeting  held Saturday , June 15  in Ugwuoba, with the Theme,” Uncommon Conversation”. 


Pix: Participants at the town hall meeting

He said since 1999, Ugwuoba community had been supporting the Peoples Democratic Party   (PDP)  and were sidelined when giving appointments and they did not understand why they should be marginalised, hence, they convened the town hall meeting to hear from their representatives ( the senator, House of Representative member , House of Assembly member and others) ,and to know why Ugwuoba was not being recognized.

He hanked God for the victory He granted to the State Governor, Dr. Peter Mbah, , at the Court after the last general elections as well as the celebration  of his One year in office anniversary. 

Pix- National President-General, ,Omah

He said Ugwuoba Community voted massively for the PDP but has not been considered for an appointments and other political dividends to that regard. 

He mentioned the following roads as roads that needed attention, Akpugoeze Road,Agolo-Efulu-Aguabosi Road Afor Market-Ogbudu-Efulu Road, Agungwu-Umualu-Ozu-Akpugoeze Road, Nkpagu-Ezi Achi-Ugwuoba Girls-Okposi Road ,Agungwu Ogboo-Umuonwu-Express Road, and Okwe-Aniocha Road.

The National President -General appealed for  provision of portable water,  exploration/exploitation of Oil & Gas in the area .

Pix- Participants

He described Ugwuoba as  a land of peace, rich in mineral and human resources. Omah commended the State Governor, Dr. Peter Mbah, the Senator representing Enugu West senatorial zone, Osita Ngwu,
, member representing Aninri/Awgu/Oji , Hon Engr. Anayo Onwuegbu, , House of Assembly member, Oji-River state Constituency, Hon. Osita Ezeh, and others for their good works in the state.

He however, on behalf of the Community, passionately appealed that Ugwuoba should be recognized and the sons and daughters be part of stakeholders in the local government area and at state levels

Pix-Traditional rulers

He highlighted some of the problems they have in Ugwuoba, saying:, “We are farmers, we don’t access fertilizers, modem farming implements, tractors, soil treating chemicals as well as good roads to convey the produce to market”.

The National President- General, appealed for renovation and upgrade of  schools,  healthcare facilities in the community .

“Our sons and daughters have been variously engaged/employed in the state civil service but have not been able to rise to Permanent Secretaries, Judges, Magistrates, Directors positions” he lamented..

Pix- Participants at the y meeting

In an opening remarks , Chairman, U.D.U. Town Hall Planning Committee, Seth Peter Chigozie Nwokolo, thanked the leadership of the Ugwuoba Development Union for giving his committee the opportunity to serve.

He said, ” Ugwuoba has been relegated to the background and has not been given its fair share in the comity of communities in Oji -River Local Government Area with respect to the principles of equity, fairness and good conscience and the question in the lips and hearts of every Ugwuoba man and woman is when will this injustice end?

He went on to say, “Oji- River Local Government Area is designed into 3 zones of A, B and C and that was in the spirit of ‘nwanneship’, to imbibe the federal character principle as enshrined in Section 318 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria , which reflects the principles of equity, fairness and justice . Unfortunately, in the distribution of political dividends , Ugwuoba is left out, hence, the reason for the town hall meeting.

He asked why the leaders and elites in Oji-River Local Government Area should not respect the Agreements of 20th August, 2009 and 10th September, 2011 , noting that” if these agreements were being respected, there is no reason the next Chairman of Oji -River Local Government Council, be it appointive or elective ,should not come from Ugwuoba”.

“Therefore, we urge that the principle of equity, fairness, justice and zoning arrangement be respected now and always in Oji -River Local Government Area in respect of what each Zone Community gets,” he said .

Pix- Chairman, Planning Committee,Seth Nwokolo

Nwokolo added that the essence of the Town Hall meeting was to bring to the knowledge, the issues and challenges they were facing as a community “and to plead that the stakeholders help them individually and collectively, to ensure that these wrongs become a thing of the past,” he said.

In an interview, National president, Ugwuoba youth association , Comrade Afamefuna Nwokeocha Gbuye said, “Ugwuoba community for a very long time had been relegated to the background of development in Enugu state and Oji- River Local Government”. He lamented that Ugwuoba had supported the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) since 1999 and.gave PDP   highest votes and when appointments came,   they went to other places. “Nobody is recognized  by way of appointments, development”. he said. 

On his part, former chairman , Oji- River Local Government Area and former majority leader , Enugu state House of Assembly, Rt .Hon. Jonny Obidimma, said the meeting was to let their representatives know they are supporting them , they are supporting the state government and every support has rewards.

“Here, we are saying we are being marginalised. We want government around us. We want political dividends. We want presence of government. We want to tell them that we are there for them and we are ready to partner with them. It’s all we want”, Obidinma said.

The maiden town hall meeting was well attended.

Author: Maureen Ikpeama

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