Obiano Moves to Clean-up Anambra, Pulls down roadside stalls in Onitsha

By James Eze

The Willie Obiano administration has stepped up its effort to clean up Anambra State of with its recent removal of illegal Motor parts, road side shops, and miscreants from Onitsha and environs.

The recent move is part of the on-going crackdown on criminals and miscreants and other individuals who contribute to the social pollution of the state.

Speaking to Journalists at the Upper Iweka road Onitsha, leader of the Joint Task Force, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Agyole Abeh said that the operation started from the Bridge Head and would be extended to all parts of the state.

Deputy Commissioner Abeh explained that the exercise was in furtherance of the directive of the Governor to sanitize the entire state as part of a comprehensive plan to rid the state of hoodlums and unwholesome practices and promote the conduct of socio-economic activities in a conducive environment.

According to him, 'there is a tendency for people to operate as if there is no law and order by carrying-on their businesses at every available space without regard to decency. How can you explain the fact that some traders wilfully block the thoroughfare and obstruct the flow of traffic with their wares? Commercial vehicles are expected to operate from central motor parks provided by the government while traders ought to be in their stalls in the markets but instead they have spilled out to the roads thereby creating the grid-lock you see every day at the Onitsha -Owerri road axis of Upper Iweka.'

He further explained that the exercise would be followed up by a public enlightenment campaign to make sure that traders understand the implication of erecting illegal structures and obstacles. 'We will initiate the use of Mobile Courts to ensure that those caught will get quick trial and if found guilty would pay a commensurate fine.'

On how the team intends to sustain the success recorded in clearing the area, Deputy Commissioner Abeh said, 'We will not stop this operation until people stop building illegal structures, street trading and setting up of motor parks in residential buildings and from there to the roads. We will continue until the set goal is achieved and will carry the exercise round to restore sanity in other parts of the state.'

The Chairman of Ogbaru Local Government Area, Chief Victor Agolue commended the team for carrying out the government directive in a peaceful manner without complains of molestation from pedestrians. On the role of his LGA in the area, Chief Agolue said 'on our part we are cleaning-up the litter and blocked drains to ensure free-flow of water. This operation requires a collective effort and we are contributing man-power to ensure that a clean environment is maintained in the area.'

Reacting to the development, some commuters and transport operators applauded the Governor for a good job. Mr Stephen Ifejika, a commuter said,' I am pleasantly surprised to see that this area can have free movement of traffic. This operation must be maintained, and we thank our new Governor for bringing order to parts of Upper Iweka. In fact they should also come to Nnewi and do the same thing.' On her part, Mrs Virginia Umeh described the exercise as long overdue; she praised the team for their effort and urged them to sustain it.