Rivers' Paralytic Polio - By Odimegwu Onwumere
Please, commend Governor Chibuike Amaechi of Rivers State and the Nigerian Governors' Forum, NGF, which Amaechi is the chairman, for showing concern for the polio victims all over the country and bringing up the issue of polio in what were tagged
the one day section national campaign against polio.
NGF through Amaechi said that it has buckled up to send the polio scourge in the country on errand. But it would be better the governors are reminded to start the elimination of the many 'paralytic polio' scourge in their different states before coming forward to the entire country. Much 'paralytic polio' abound in all facets of governments in the 36 states of the federation.
A case study of the much 'paralytic polio' that abound is Rivers State. Amaechi should start to eliminate very fast the acute and devastating disease of 'promise and fail' which has caused a virus of disappointment among many Rivers masses.
Polio, known as the abbreviation for poliomyelitis, man is the only natural host for the virus. And this is true talk! Amaechi should start to eliminate very fast this virus of 'promise and fail' among the majority indigenous contractors which virus has entered our livelihood, environment, sensibility and multiplying in everywhere of our lifestyle.
Their greedy virus for self-aggrandizement has entered their blood and has gone damaging our state more intensely and extensively. Our brain and our spinal cord have been invaded by the abandonment of contracts by contractors in Rivers State and our voices seem could not be heard any longer.
There is inflammation of the central Rivers State nervous system, and the government is loaning money in quantum to tame the its 'paralytic polio' in its long queue of projects, which it has vowed recently that new contracts would not be awarded again, and that electorates should exercise patient or patience. Just polio upon polio, everywhere!
Polio can be a minor illness, as it is in 80-90% of clinical infections, chiefly in young children, but the type of 'polio' we are suffering in Rivers State is a major illness where we climb on the trees to get to our destinations because contractors abandoned projects heaping excuses on the rain.
This is what we have heard year in year out since 2007 of this administration. While the recovery of polio (if not paralytic) occurs in 24-72 hours, the type of polio we are suffering in Rivers State is taking us four years, yet no one is sure when cure could come.
Today, we are suffering symptoms of 'paralytic polio' in contracts as fever, severe headache, stiff neck and back, deep muscle pain, and sometimes areas of hyperesthesia (increased sensation) and paresthesia (altered sensation) are on the increase.
Like the U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945) suffered polio and worked with the National Foundation/March of Dimes to raise money to combat this once-fearsome scourge, the scourge of bad roads in Rivers State is causing us (myelitis) infantile paralysis in our business and movement.
However, Amaechi may mean well in delivering quality job as his administration's major goal, but the dangerous 'paralytic polio' which its virus has infected the contractors may not want him to achieve this. For example, they caused him to 'spit' at some of the projects while on inspection tour recently due to poor materials used. Their 'paralytic polio' infected-mind would not allow them to take the governor's directives that 'the topping of asphalt should be thickened and the width of the road expanded to reduce flooding.'
It is very sad that while the projects cost the state fortunes, many of the contractors may be smiling to the bank without a bath of eyelid on their debased integrity by abandoning duty. Like the government said that it has commenced the process of restructuring the board of Internal Revenue for more efficient performance, it should as well do on the policies it has with the contractors.
Everybody in Rivers State should take all the projects in the state serious, especially the roads construction which is supposed to be inevitable because of the endless traffic that has been frustrating all of us.
We are all inconvenienced by the paralytic roads construction. We should not forget that Houses have been brought down by the government as to widen the roads to improve traffic flow, poliotic contractors should help us.
It is of no use if Rivers State is undergoing major infrastructure changes to accommodate growing populations, yet it is being frustrated like a child suffering polio in the hands of contractors.
Amaechi telling contractors handling different government projects to demonstrate high level of conscientiousness in delivering quality jobs may not pierce the ears of anyone except a magistrate court sends one to the gulag, only then would mediocrity look for its way out of the state.