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Ebonyi communities bemoan non-completion of Ivo Dam project

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Communities in Ivo Council of Ebonyi State have raised concern over the non-completion of the Ivo Dam project over six years after the Federal Government awarded it to the contractors.

They lamented the failure of the contractor, Anbeez Services Nigeria Limited, to complete the project allegedly awarded in 2014, adding that it was now a major threat to their lives, farmlands and outputs.

But the contractor said the project was not abandoned, stressing that Anheez Services Nigeria Limited was waiting for Federal Government’s approval to enable it continue with the project.

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The company’s Managing Director, Anayo Onwuegbu, said: “I have nothing to worry about negative comments or reports on Anbeez Services, especially with regards to the Ivo Dam projects. I am yet to recover all my debts in the projects and I will soon get Federal Executive Council’s (FEC) approval of over N1b for the project.”

The dam project, which was attracted by former Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, to Ivo and some communities in Enugu State, was aimed at improving agricultural production, especially rice.

Residents, however, said the project was now a shadow of its former self and a death trap for the Amokwe, Ngwongwo, Okwe and Ameke communities in Ivo council, adding that no fewer than four persons had drowned since it was abandoned.

A resident of one of the communities, Innocent Igwe said during the visit of representative of Ohaozara/Onicha/Ivo Federal Constituency, Livinus Makwe, to the project site, the parlous state of the job had brought several deaths to the communities due to flooding.

He lamented that the project that was supposed to bring succour to the people and help them increase their agricultural yield, was now killing people, stressing that urgent steps should be taken to remedy the situation.

Igwe pointed out that the flooding caused by the dam had devastated the surrounding farmlands and listed Rolland Aja Orji, Ivoke Aja, Mrs. Udu Ajali and Cletus Ajah as victims who had drowned in the project.

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He said that the community had earlier appealed to the Federal and Ebonyi State governments to come to the rescue of the four communities, but to no avail.

Igwe alleged that relief materials brought from National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to cushion the effects of flooding in the area were diverted to communities in Enugu State that did not experience any damages.

Makwe, who visited the dam site and the damaged farmlands, expressed regrets at the destruction and loss of lives caused by non-completion of the dam.

He promised to meet with the contractor, relevant ministries and agencies to find out why the project had remained uncompleted and work with other lawmakers from the area to ensure the project was completed.

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