By Ewa Innocent, The Sight News
Abakaliki: Ebonyi state government is fully committed to the construction of International airport on the approved site,not minding the activities of detractors.
The Commissioner for Information and State Orientation, Barr.Uchenna Orji, made the clarification during a press briefing in his office,while reacting to the pocket of suspected sponsored protests,that have trailed the construction of Ebonyi airport, located at Umuogharu, Ezza North local government area and Amuzzu,Ezza south local government area.
The protest, which took place at Aguogboriga,Umuogharu in Ezza North local govt area,had few persons suspected to be natives of the community, who were seen protesting against the siting of Ebonyi International airport in their community.
This is coming barely one week,after governor Umahi had met with the stakeholders,traditional rulers,opinion leaders from Ezza North and Ezza South local govt areas that host the land for the establishment of the airport,which he assured them of adequate compensation.
Briefing newsmen on the issue, Barr. Orji, made it clear that due process was followed by government before the choice of the site,especially for its proximity, centrality and wondered why few people would allow themselves to be used to distract government on its lofty dream put in action.
“What we saw yesterday about handful of people is not something we should give attention to. This is because,the governor has severally met with stakeholders on the issue of the land, and the issue of compensation was also resolved.
“It was agreed that enumeration be made where the issue of buildings and economic trees exist, so that adequate compensation be made,and I know the governor has shown a lot of responsibility and compassion to the people of Ezza North and Ezza south communities.
“I don’t want to bore you on the importance of the airport,but, if you take a look at what is happening in Ethiopia, which is the major source of revenue. We Also know that if you are counting on any state that has airport, Ebonyi never had and it has constituted a lot of impediments to our economic development.
“We have been patronizing Enugu airport, and as it stands now,we are patronizing Owerri airport on flight to any part of the world. That is not acceptable to a responsible administration,” he said.
Barr. Orji described the move by the protesters as an effort in futility as work has commenced on the site in earnest. He reminded them on the land use Act which empowers the governor to acquire any piece of land for the purpose of public use.
He thanked President Muhammadu Buhari,for approving the construction of International airport in Ebonyi state.