For more than 20 years, the road linking Ossomaala, Obeagwa, Ogwuanaocha and Akili-ogidi, in Anambra State, has been abandoned, but this is set to change, after community-based monitors (CBMs) drew public attention to the plight of the poor state of the road.
The CBMs of the affected communities (Ossomaala, Obeagwa, Ogwuanaocha, Akili-Ogidi) raised attention through social media, used community demand charter– an advocacy tool – and led advocacies to the traditional rulers of all the communities and the ministry of works.
They wrote a letter to the state governor, copying in the Commissioner for Works requesting that the road be repaired. After receiving the letter, the governor called for a contractor to be sent to the site with the mandate to complete at least 5km of the road before the next rainy season.
Engineer Omebu, one of the CBMs from AkiliOgidi and Community Empowerment Network (COMEN), Ogbaru Local Government Area (LGA), said: ‘We are happy to witness the commencement of work on the road after various engagements through V2P. The road is cleared and the bulldozers have arrived to start the sand filling of the road.’
The repair of the road would ease transportation of people and food, which is being produced in large quantities in the area. Ifeanyi Mercy, a CBM from Ossomala, said: ‘The knowledge and skills I gained through the V2P project from Justice Development and Peace Commission (JDPC) Onitsha, has taught me to ask questions, monitor and report happenings in my community and local government with regards to community projects and development. As work has commenced on this road we shall continue to ask questions, monitor the work being done and report to the community leaders and other stakeholders as we continue to pray that the road will be completed.’