Ebonyi paddy rice traders decry bad roads in Ikwo council area
By Ruth Oginyi
As farmers harvest their produce in different communities in Ebonyi state, Paddy Rice traders have appealed to the state government to construct the roads leading to rural Paddy Rice Market, in Ikwo, local government area, in order to ameliorate their plights.
Nwangangbo Paddy Rice Market located at the boundary between Amagu and Okpuitumo Ikwo communities both in Ikwo council area, is one of the major markets with approximately 2000 bags of Paddy Rice sold each market day.
Orient Daily, in a visit to the market, observed that the road leading to the biggest Paddy Market in the council area, which is over twenty kilometers away from Ikwo local government headquarters, is not motorable, resulting to farmers not bringing their produce to the popular Abakaliki Rice Mill.
This is why the farmers are calling the attention of the state government to the place to build their road and also install functional milling industry in the area, noting that such would boost the economy of the state.
One of the farmers, who gave his name as Mr. Nwigboji Amagu, while interacting with our reporter, lamented that the road leading to the market has been abandoned by both council chairman and the state government, despite the said Umahi road network transformation currently ongoing in different parts of the state.
He questioned if Ikwo is no more part of Ebonyi state despite giving Umahi block vote during the last election.
The aged farmers while narrating how they protected their votes in the past electioneering period and ensuring they returned the incumbent governor to power, hoped to get the community functional road network for the interest of the rural dwellers.
Another farmer, Mr. Nweke Ucha, blamed state government of neglect, noting that they hear over the radio of how every part of the state has gotten dividends of good governance of the current administration, including building of flyovers, but they were abandoned despite government admonition to civil servants and youths to engage in farming.
He described the government as hypocrites, who say one thing and do another; stressing that federal and state governments have not proven that they are ready to promote agriculture in the country, as good road network is a major motivator to farming.
He challenged governor Umahi to start rural road network leading to the market as a way to bring investors to the area with it’s rich arable land.
Lending her voice, a trader, Mrs. Nnenna Obeji, urged state government to open rice milling industry in the area to boost the economy of the people.
She noted that with the opening of the milling industry in the community, urban migration among the youths would reduce, as the people are major rice and yam farmers, who have expanse land for agricultural business.