How do we sustain the recent development strides in Arochukwu?

Samuel Iheanyichukwu Ohuabunwa, OFR

It is great to live in these times in Aro. To travel to Aro in two hours or less from Umuahia from either of three directions is exciting. With the work going on by the Federal Government on the Ohafia-Arochukwu highway, travelling to Aro on this main thoroughfare has become less strenuous and given the speed and quality of work on that road, one is thankful to God that what seemed impossible for several years is looking easily realizable.

For many years, this road was the topmost priority in all the development needs of Arochukwu and many have complained ceaselessly while some had fasted and prayed for days on ending. Now that work is fully on going on that road, I encourage UmuAro to show gratitude to God and thank those of our political leaders, especially Senator Mao Ohuabunwa that God has used to attract this most desired development project for us. I believe that our God will be happy with us when we acknowledge what he has done.

In addition to this main artery, you can now travel from Umuahia to Aro through Umuahia- Bende- Itumbauzo – Nkana to Arochukwu or through the Umuahia- Bende- Ozuabam – Ndiokereke – Arochukwu road (especially in good weather) in under two hours. Or you could do Umuahia- Ikwuano-Ikot Ekpene- Nkana – Arochukwu also within two hours (though a bit longer). And today you can even easily connect Aba to Aro using some new roads done by both Abia and Akwa Ibom States. From Port Harcourt you can now easily access Aro through the East-West Road via Ikot Abasi- Abak to Ikot Ekpene and then through Nkana to Aro. All these new access roads have tremendously reduced the stress of travelling to Arochukwu. Aro people must show genuine gratitude to God and express appreciation to the Federal, Akwa Ibom and Abia state governments for the great works they have done. We must be particularly very grateful to the governor of Akwa Ibom State for the solid and beautiful new Nkana Bridge. We also need to appeal to the Abia State Governor to complete the asphalting of the Ndiokereke- Arochukwu road so that we can fully enjoy the great work he did in building the Ndiokereke bridge.

And now when you enter Arochukwu you can get a feel of being in an urban centre. In our own very eyes, we have seen many of the township roads in Arochukwu asphalted. It gives me such a great joy to drive around Arochukwu with great ease these days. We need to show extraordinary thanks to God who has remembered us, answering our prayers of several years. We must also thank our political representatives and leaders through whom God has brought these blessings to Arochukwu. Once again, we must express our gratitude to Sen. Mao for working with his colleagues in the National Assembly to get the roads appropriated in the NDDC Budget.  The efforts of Sen. Mao and Dr. Alex Otti in getting the NDDC to mobilize contractors to go ahead and execute the projects is praise worthy and clearly shows how much Aro can benefit if we have many more Aro people who can exercise political influence for the good of Aro. I counsel that we must be unceasing in our prayers and take all the necessary actions to encourage as many Aro sons and daughters to enter the political space. It is not in our interest to work against the political success of Nwa Aro or to make it look like it is either this or none. In every way possible we must support our political sons and daughters to achieve or retain their political dreams. The more, the better, since no one is sure which will succeed or fail. This attitude must be fully sold to our people by tshe political actors themselves and Nzuko Aro should also promote this attitude. It is in our overall interest. 

To sustain this developmental strides in Aro, it is also advisable that Arochukwu as a community must never present itself as being anti- any government in power. It is alright to support Umu Aro in whatever political party they belong but it does not portray wisdom if Aro as a community is seen to be against any party or person in power at the state or federal level. It is not in our interest for any Aro politician to lure the entire Arochukwu community to present itself as totally opposed to any government in power. Our votes will show our preferences but we must never give the impression that the community is against any one or any party in power. We must always bear in mind, that Aro votes alone will never give us any significant political position. We will always need other people’s votes to even win the local government chairmanship position.

Therefore we must learn to cooperate with other communities.We must therefore not preach hate against any politician, whether of Aro stock or of other ancestry. Because we will never be sure of whom God will use to bless Aro. We must always remember that political decisions are taken at different levels and we never know in whose hands, our matter will land. Additionally we must respect political leaders from other communities or zones, so that when it becomes our turn to lead, we will expect to be respected also. Again, politicians being what they are, they can make us enemies of one party or the other or enemies of one community or the other, and tomorrow they change party without considering or consulting us. Senator Akpabio’s case in Akwa Ibom shows the worst in the politician. 

The other critical factor that will help sustain the recent development strides is for peace to reign in Aro. First is that there must be peace in our villages and among our traditional rulers. Every one who loves Aro development must support the ongoing effort to bring reconciliation to traditional institutions in Arochukwu. Second is that there must be peace in Nzuko Aro and all the village unions. We need to all pull in one direction to attain the lofty heights God plans to take us to. We can see street lights in several places in Aro, water is flowing from several points in Aro today for the common man. Soon our college of education (technical) will become a federal institution that will bring added development to Arochukwu.

Finally, if this development strides will be sustained, then we must continue in prayers, seeking the face of God. All forms of unrighteousness including – idolatry, ancestral worship, adultery, hatred, malice and all fraudulent activities must cease in Aro land. This is why we need to congratulate the Arochukwu Christian Brethren Association (ACBA) for the recent gospel invasion which was used as an opportunity to rededicate Arochukwu to the Hands of The Almighty God. I thank our traditional leaders for humbling themselves, attending the programme and pleading for God’s forgiveness over Arochukwu. I am excited in my spirit that God has remembered Arochukwu and will do much more abundantly for us as long as we eschew evil and worship Him in spirit and in truth. That to my mind is the only way we can sustain the recent development strides that are bringing  light, prosperity and joy to Arochukwu. May we see many more days of good for Arochukwu!

And may God bless all of us this Easter!!

About author

Sam Ohuabunwa

Chairman, Business Development & Investment Promotion Committee, ADF.
Secretary-General, Nzuko Aro (1992-1997).
President-General, Nzuko Aro (1998-2003)

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