The Ebonyi State House of Assembly has passed into law a bill to establish the Ebonyi State Rural Roads Authority.
The object and purpose of the law was to establish the Ebonyi Rural Access Road Authority for the overall management, designing, development, rehabilitation, reconstruction and maintenance of rural roads across the State.
The bill was passed during Wednesday plenary following a motion moved by the Leader of the House, Kingsley Ikoro, representing Afikpo North West State Constituency, and seconded by the Deputy Chief Whip, Hon. Lucas Arinze Chukwu.
The motion, which was hotly debated by the members, was later put to vote by the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Moses Odunwa, and unanimously adopted.
Addressing members after the passage of the law, the Speaker explained that the Authority, when fully constituted, would see to the full development of rural roads in the state for easy access, adding that it would also enhance movement of agricultural produce from the rural areas to urban markets.
He emphasised that the development would enhance economic well being of both the urban and rural dwellers.
While appreciating members for giving the bill accelerated passage, Speaker Odunwa equally thanked the State Governor, Francis Nwifuru, for his all-inclusive government and for prioritising the welfare of Ebonyi State people in his administration.
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The law, which is deemed to have come into force on August 8, 2023, will be cited as the Ebonyi State Rural Access Road Authority law and other Matters connected therewith 2023.
Arguing in favour of the bill earlier, Ikoro maintained that the law has become necessary considering the ugly state of rural roads across the 13 local government areas of the State.
He noted that the establishment of State Rural Access Roads Authority was highly needed as the development of any State is determined by the level of easy access to rural communities within the state.
Others who spoke in favour of the bill included Aloysius Nwodo, representing Ebonyi North West; Friday Ogbuewu, representing Ezza South; Celestine Ogba, representing Onicha East; and Chinyere Nwogbaga, representing Ebonyi North East.
The members in their separate submissions emphasised that the bill, if passed into law, would not only address the high rate of Rural-Urban Migration, but also abate high cost of living and strengthen economic prosperity of Ebonyi people.
Nwogbaga added that rural roads when put in good conditions will equally attract investors into the State.