.Governor Adams Oshiomhole flanked by Mr Osarodion Ogie, Commissioner for Works (left) and Mr Victor Enobakhare, Chairman, Egor Local Government Area during the Governor’s inspection of the completed bridge at Uromehe on the 87-km Evboeghae-Ugo-Urhonigbe road in Orhiomwon Local Government Area on Tuesday. –
Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State says ongoing construction of the 87-kilometer road in Orhionmwon Local Government Area will be completed and ready for commissioning in April, 2016, saying the road will open up several communities in the local government for rapid development.
Speaking during the inspection of the Evboeghae-Ugo-Urhonigbe road with a bridge at Uromehe, linking about eighty communities in the Local Government Area, on Tuesday, Governor Oshiomhole said, “the important thing about this road is that before now, our people in Orhionmwon who had to pass through Delta State before accessing their communities now have direct road to their communities.
Due to the old conditions, we were beginning to lose some of our communities to Delta State. People coming from Benin City had to go through Delta to come to their communities in Edo State. One implication of that is that Delta people were beginning to claim some of our communities by reason of the fact that you had to go through Delta.
“So, now, this road is going to end up at Abraka Road to Agbor. Even people from Delta who also go home now from Benin will find it easier to go through this Urhonigbe Road all the way to Delta. It is a much better road, and it is much faster for them.
“This is the longest single road in one local government that we are doing, it is 87 kilometres altogether. It has been designed in a way that it connects several villages and communities and as you can see, it is a very standard road.”
According to Oshiomhole, “This is much better than a lot of our federal roads. The same width, it is not a rural road, you have all the features of a modern standard road and you can see for yourselves, the standard of the road. There are a lot of communities that would have been cut off, but the road has been designed to connect all those communities that are off the road and that is why, you see, you come one way, branch off another way, and all of that.
“I am quite happy with the progress because a lot of people in Benin City, in Edo State who are not living here and who have no business coming this way are not aware of what we are doing in communities like this and my principle is simple, every Nigerian is rural by birth.
“Even the big cities today, whether you call it Lagos, Kaduna, Enugu, Benin and so on, all started as small hamlets long ago. It is with time that people begin to locate there, and as they find more economic activities, more people come in, that is how hamlets became villages, villages became towns and towns became cities.
“I think for me, the real story here is that we are not just working in the capital, we are not just working in local government headquarters, we are working in ordinary communities because for me, they are the real forgotten majority.
“I have spoken to the contractor and he told me we have completed 89 per cent of the road and he told me that by the end of April, before the next rain, this road will be finished and I will be very proud to invite our President to come and see what we are doing in rural Edo.
“Beyond what we are doing in Benin City but in rural communities to connect them not because there is a politician from there but because we feel that Nigeria belongs to everyone and what we are doing is not inferior, it is not so-called rural road, it is just the normal Edo standard, the Oshiomhole standard.”
He continued, “I am told, this is the first time that they are having any major state government project. It is not just about the Central hospital in Benin City, it is not just about Airport road; now, it is about the real Edo people, the forgotten majority. This government recognizes them because when you extend development to hamlets, you don’t need to sermonize to people to stay at home. They will stay where development is if we carry development to meet them in their community”.
At the time of inspection, construction work was still in progress as men and machinery were engaged in construction activities.
The Governor later paid a visit to the palace of the Okaevbo of Urhonigbe, HRH Chief Igie Aimayo, where he assured the royal fathers and elders of his resolve to ensure completion of the road project before the rainy season.