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Stop asking rent from road contractors, Ikpeazu warns communities, Abia youths

Abia State government on Thursday issued a stern warning to community youths who invade contracting companies working for government in the provision of infrastructures in any part of the state.

Addressing communities in the state on the progress made so far in the execution of the N21bn World Bank-assisted Rural Access and Mobility Project in the state, the Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, warned the communities not to demand “marching ground” from the contractors.

Popularly called ‘Marching Ground Money,’ investigations showed that the huge fund is usually demanded by community youths before allowing any project development in their area to commence.

The governor, represented by the Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Obinna Oriaku, made the remarks during in Umuahia at a one-day workshop for stakeholders organised by the state RAMP on “The prioritisation of intervention areas and rural road links in Abia’’.

Ikpeazu revealed that the World Bank approved the facility for the construction of rural link roads across the state as an intervention for the development of Abia, and further urged the benefiting communities to cooperate with the contractors to ensure quick completion of the projects.

He warned that any more case of disturbing any contractor for marching ground money will be viewed as fraud and culprits will be treated as economic and development saboteurs.

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