Former Governor of Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu, has said African Development Bank, AfDB, has given final approval for a $115 million loan for road construction, erosion control and solid waste management in the State.
The former governor, who spoke through Onyebuchi Ememanka, his Chief Press Secretary, on Saturday, said the loans were initiated and achieved by his government for use by the successive administration.
The fund, according to him, is to be used for the construction of 190.43km of road in Aba and 58.03 km of road in Umuahia, the State capital.
Erosion control projects and solid waste management are also to be executed with the funds captured in the loan.
He expressed gratitude to God that the loan has, according to him, scaled the final approval hurdle, adding that the total funding cost of the projects is $263.80 million, while the Abia State Government would provide $23.80 million counterpart funds to be used in compensating people affected by the project and for implementation of settlement action plans.
Ikpeazu, who accused politicians of allegedly writing the National Assembly to stop the loan, berated their unpatriotic efforts but said he was happy that the loan became a reality.
He thanked some officials of his administration who played vital roles in making the loan a project.
“While we worked on this facility, I understood clearly that the final approval would come after I had left office.
“I wasn’t bothered about that because since governance is a continuum, whoever will take over from me will implement it for the good of the people of Abia State,” he said.
“Ironically, some of these people are the ones in government today and who will superintendent over the management of the projects they desperately sought to frustrate.”
The former Governor said the former administration under his watch started works on Port Harcourt road in Aba even when the loan had not been received.
The Obingwa-born politician said securing the loan was one of his most cherished objectives as Governor.
He said he had no regrets that the loan was not approved while he was still in power and advised the present administration in the State to work with the funds.
“That the final approval came one month after I left office immaterial. The ball is now in the court of the present administration in the State”, he said.
However, the state government is yet to confirm the approval of the AfDB loan as claimed by Ikpeazu.