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New Rivers: Developing Kalahari Communities – By Simeon Nwakaudu 


The relationship between Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike and  Kalabari land  is a political love  story that continues to grow on a daily basis. The friendship  has evolved over the years.

Governor Wike has a very strong  support base  in Kalabari land , with some of his most ardent  grassroots  supporters  coming from the area.

One of the highpoints of the administration of Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike is the even distribution  of projects  to improve the living condition of the people across the state . No section of the state has been denied quality projects.

The development of Kalabari land has featured prominently in the New Rivers Development Agenda. Two years down the line, Governor Wike has rolled out key projects in Kalabari land.

As a governor with a pan-Rivers mandate, Governor Wike has worked to give every section  a sense of belonging. 

Governor Wike said: “In terms of the tangibles, we have substantially delivered on our campaign promises to the State and our people. We have a pan-Rivers mandate. And so we are bound to spread development to all parts of the State. This is what we are doing to foster balanced development.”

Sand-filing/Reclamation of Land

For the Kalahari communities, the land reclamation embarked upon by Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike is an economic development package. This project will create land for schools, hospitals and homes in communities without  access to land because of the encroachment of the Atlantic ocean. 

The administration is reclaiming  lands in the three local government areas that make up Kalahari kingdom.

The land reclamation projects  in Abalama and Bakana towns span 38 hectares. The Wike administration will deliver the lands in five months .

The Governor said the dredging, standfiling and reclamation projects which run through the three Kalabari local government areas, will entrench  development in the area. 

He said:  “The last time I came here for campaign I promised that if you support me to win, I will carry out some projects. That is why I have come to fulfil my promise” Governor Wike asserted. 

“We in PDP, when we make promise, we fulfill it. Tell those who make promise and never fulfill them not to come and deceive you” h)

Governor Wike urged the people of the community to support the company undertaking the project to complete it on schedule . He also advised  the company to reciprocate by providing jobs for the youths of the town.

Zonal and General Hospitals

Degema Zonal Hospital: Five Hundred Million naira has been released by the administration of Governor Wike for the completion  of the Zonal Hospital  in Degema. This health  facility will give the Kalabari people in the area access to high level healthcare. 

The governor explained  that his administration  is completing the because it is relevant to  bring  health closer to the people.

General Hospitals  Abonnema and Buguma: 

As part of his programme to transform the lives of the people, Governor Wike embarked on the total rehabilitation  of the General Hospitals in Abonnema and Buguma towns.

The governor  said that the state government  resolved  to revive the secondary  healthcare facilities  because  they were  abandoned  for over two decades.

The governor spoke  at Abonnema in Akuku-Toru Local Government Area and Buguma in Asari-Toru Local Government Area  where he flagged-off the rehabilitation of the General Hospital , Abonnema and General Hospital , Buguma . 

The governor  said  that  his administration  is bringing  healthcare  back to the people, pointing out that  for decades people from Buguma  and Abonnema  have been  forced to travel all the way to Port Harcourt  to access  quality  healthcare . 

He said : “The condition  of  these hospitals will make anyone cry. What we are doing is to rehabilitate  the hospitals, upgrade the facilities  and ensure that people from Buguma and Abonnema  get  quality healthcare “.

The rehabilitation  of the hospitals have reached  an advanced stage. The governor has programmed the re-equipping of the hospitals to tackle healthcare challenges in the area.

Construction of Abonnema Ring Road 

The Construction of Abonnema Ring Road Phase is a work in progress. This is an alternative route out of the ancient  town of Abonnema. 

Abonnema-Obonnema Bridge 

As part of the celebration of his first one hundred days in office, Rivers State Governor,  Nyesom Ezenwo Wike commissioned the Abonnema – Obonnoma link road in Akuku-Toru Local Government Area amid celebration by indigenes and residents of the area.

The road which has a bridge was abandoned by the immediate past administration in the state. The governor  completed the project to link the areas.

Nyemoni Grammar School, Abonnema 

This  is one of the schools  selected  for the introduction of boarding  secondary education  in the state.  The school has been totally  rehabilitated with modern  facilities. 

The internal roads of the school have been constructed. The school now has new hostels, staff quarters, library and laboratories. 

The administration  has also concluded  plans for the construction of the Buguma Internal Roads, with the process for the construction of the Telma-Ifoko Road ongoing. 

More projects are in the works for different communities  in the area. The administration  has also worked with the security  agencies  to improve  security  in Kalabari land.

A man of his words, Governor Wike will continue to work with stakeholders in Kalabari land to move the  state forward.  The area will have legacy projects that will further  transform the communities  and consolidate on the  empowerment of the people.

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