For many years the narrative on bad roads at Aba centered around “ukwu mango” Ariaria along Faulks road Aba. Those wishing to take shots at ABSG flaunt pictures of that portion of Faulks road as evidence that Aba is “finished”.
Obviously, Ariaria is key to Aba and Governor Ikpeazu admitted as much:
“We also did economic impact analysis. Why are we doing Faulks road? We are doing faulks road because it leads to Ariaria.
“Why are we doing samek? Because samek evacuates people from Ariaria. With over 100,000 shops in Ariaria, you can’t ignore the economy of that cluster.
“Instead of doing a road that leads to my political friend’s house, I’d rather concentrate on Ariaria.
“I’d rather do Port Harcourt road because I know that is the hub for those who fabricate things with metals.” Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu was quoted as saying.
Administrations before Governor Ikpeazu worked on Faulks road, including the ukwu mango area. Yet once the rains come whatever work that was done collapses and our people return back to square one.
I recall one social media activist suggesting that to solve the flooding challenge along Faulks road and Ariaria the state government should demolish one uncompleted multi-storey building opposite the area known as “ama ikonne”.
He believed something was buried under the building that was responsible for the perennial flooding challenge along Faulks road axis.
And then Dr Okezie Ikpeazu was elected Governor of Abia State.
He immediately awarded the contract for reconstruction of Faulks, old express-MCC and Umule roads.
But during one of his inspection visits, with seasoned engineers and town planners in tow, it was discovered that the problem of ukwu mango and Faulks road is located somewhere around a water body known as Ifeobara basin.
Promptly, Governor Ikpeazu canceled the contract for Faulks road reconstruction, as he believed that the them contractor lacked the capacity to get the road fixed in a sustainable manner and invited a grade A construction company, Setraco, to come and handle the road and deliver a long lasting solution to the challenge along that key road.
After exhaustive scientific and engineering reviews, a solution was found:
1. Install a 6.8km drainage pipe to take water from Ifeobara basin straight to waterside Aba.
2. Install water pumps to push water from Ifeobara basin to waterside.
3. Excavate the soil along Faulks road and replace totally.
4. Dualize the road to make for free flow of traffic from Brass Street to PH Express through Faulks (Ariaria) road without demolishing too many houses.
The tough part was actually the engineering involved in literally moving Ifeobara basin to waterside Aba.
Today, the tough part is done and dusted, as recently confirmed by the hard working Commissioner for Works, Rt Hon Eziuche Ubani.
The pumps are in place and water is seamlessly draining to Waterside from Ifeobara basin.
Ukwu Mango can now take multiple assault from the heaviest of rains and still stand firm.
Pictures attached show stages of the well thought out engineering innovation that has solved a seemingly intractable problem at Aba.
Permit me to inform you that when excavations started around the ukwu mango area the contractors met asphalted layers of road buried deep under the surface.
The asphalt confirmed that water and sand literally covered previous road reconstruction efforts at that portion.
That’s one down….Aba-Owerri road and Faulks road to go soon.
Aba road, Umuahia, has also been conquered and undergoing finishing touches, as we say in Aba.
When some of us said “Nwa Aba will fix Aba” we knew what we were talking about.
One by one we will get there….
See some photos of the works done:
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