Umu Aro from all walks of life who converged on the kingdom’s Historic Cultural Center on Aro Day the 26th of December 2016, could not believe their ears as an illustrious son of the kingdom and the Abia State All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) gubernatorial candidate in the 2015 general, Dr. Alex Otti (OFR) announced to a cheering crowd his decision to take over and complete the civic centre and hand over to Nzuko Aro before the end of this year.
A thunderous ovation greeted his announcement as many recalled the journey of the civic centre which construction stated in 1976. Tales of how money was raised in the past, which did not make any appreciable impact on the project, has been a common sing song in Aro. The project has been described as a white elephant project by many. Several fund raising events had been organized in the past with the sole aim of raising funds to ensure the completion of the project. In one such events, a prominent Nwa Aro now had announced to a cheering crowd that he will undertake the roofing of the project. When approached by a close friend after his announcement, he confided in him that he made that pledge because he feared that the civic centre might not be roofed in his life time.
Arc. Chima Chijioke of Landmarks Associates designed and produced the master piece architectural design of the project free of charge during the tenure of late Mazi Emmanuel Okoroafor (Avonta) as President General of Nzuko Aro, while the foundation laying ceremony was performed in 1991 by a former deputy governor of Imo State. The trio of Engr. Goddy Ijeomah, Arc Emmanuel Okoroafor and Engr. Chinedu Oti later modified the design.
Successive administrations of Nzuko Aro had at one time or the other made efforts towards ensuring that the project is taken to the next level. The administration of Mazi Sam Ohuabunwa (OFR) constructed the foundation of the centre and other works while Mazi Emma Kanu Ivi through the direct engagement of Mazi Julius Imuoh, roofed the civic centre. The administration of Mazi Nnamdi Udoh also did some work at the centre.
With the latest development, Aro can look forward to a befitting cultural centre courtesy of Dr. Alex Chioma Otti (OFR, Ugwu Aro) before the end of year 2017.