By Emmanuel Tortiv
The administration of Hon. Musa Dikko, Chairman of Bwari Area Council has commenced the grading and rehabilitation of some key yet-to-be asphalted township roads with laterite at the area Council’s headquarters in Bwari last week.
The roads linking the entrance to the Council Secretariat and Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board with Action Layout and the major road in the center of the town linking Bwari Market through some banks and JAMB were among the rehabilitated roads.
Graders, trucks and other earth moving equipment were seen busy offloading tones of laterite on the badly damaged roads filled with potholes that often cause damage to vehicles.
Speaking with Abuja Digest Weekly in Bwari, the Chief Press Secretary to the Chairman, Mr. Daniel Isa said the exercise was a decision by the Council to give the roads a facelift since the construction firm Arab Contractors was yet to do anything since the contract was awarded several years ago.
Mr. Isa said “contract is never awarded on top of a contract”, when he was asked why the Council kept spending tax payers monies year-in year-out on the roads that almost degenerated into total state of disrepair before the present administration in the Council was elected into power.
“What is important now is how to maintain these roads till the time that the main contractors will come and carry out the asphalt work”, stated the Chief Press Secretary.
He said the Hon. Musa Dikko administration was putting laterite and grading with the intent of compacting the roads to ensure potholes no longer existed so that people will enjoy easy driving to and from work in the area council.
However, a Youth Activist and Public Commentator resident in the area Mr. Charles Awode has faulted the timing of the project close to the general elections as a political calculation by the leadership of the Area Council to win the hearts of voters, an accusation the Chief Press Secretary has debunked.
“The fact is that whenever you want to work, whether they like it or not, you must do your job. At this time it is necessary we do it now that we are in dry season, so that when it is well compacted and the rains come it will help to maintain the roads properly. It is not because of election because election will come and go but we are doing our best to see that people have good roads to pass through”, said Mr. Isah.
Abuja Digest Weekly in Bwari reports that though the idea of rehabilitating the roads is well received by most residents of the area, the dust created by moving vehicles on the roads has become a nightmare for those whose houses and shops are situated along the roads.
At Bwari Market for instance, traders and market women who display their goods by the road side have to contract water vendors to wet the roads everyday in the portions they stay, thus adding to the cost of the wares they dish out to the public.
During the rainy season on the other hand, these hitherto dusty roads become so muddy and stuffy such that movement becomes as difficult as the damaged roads
FCTA to employ 500 health workers
By Wisdom Acka
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has said that it would employ not less than 500 health professionals to improve service delivery to residents and visitors of the Territory.
Secretary, Health and Human Service Secretariat, Adamu Abubakar Bappah dropped this hint in Kubwa General Hospital, last week during an inspection of FCTA hospitals and other health facilities.
The Secretary revealed this while responding to requests for employment of more staffs for the hospitals, a request that was also made by all the General Hospitals visited by the Secretary and his team.
Bappah who disclosed that the FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello had already given the Secretariat the go ahead to employ, however appealed for patience from the job seekers, explaining that not all of them from the FCTA’s 14 hospitals would be absorbed because their number was quite high, adding that other Nigerians too would be considered.
Commenting on an abandoned Accidents and Emergency Unit in Bwari General Hospital, Bappah relied on a suggestion from Head of Works, Hospital Management Board, Effiong Ita, to revoke and re-award the project due to abandonment and death of the contractor.
In all the hospitals that requested expansion and acquisition of modern facilities to shore up service delivery, the Secretary pointed out that most of the hospitals lacked space for expansion, promising that the Administration would consult with appropriate authorities with a view to expanding the structures.
Bappah also paid homage to respective traditional leaders of Bwari: Sarkin Bwari, Awwal Musa Ijakoro II, and Esu of Bwari, Ibrahim D. Yaro (JP), and solicited their cooperation and support for government hospitals within their domain, which they all obliged and promised to sensitize their subjects on the need to visit only hospitals for treatment and births.
The team never had it tough until it got to the palace of the Agaba of Jiwa, Alhaji Idris Musa. The fearless and flamboyant royal father, who did not mince words, almost scolded the team and the FCT Administration, accusing them of abandoning his ancient chiefdom in the provision of basic amenities, especially health facility.
Urging the FCTA to provide his area at least, a secondary hospital; the royal father queried: “It is a shame that as a polio ambassador, I do not have any hospital within my domain. My people are dying, our women and children are dying, and the government is not doing anything. Look at the access road, in case of emergency, how can anyone survive in trying to access Kubwa or Gwarinpa General Hospitals.
“And this is where you have the international timber and building materials market and others. Railway is just 5km away from here”
Speaking on plans by the FCTA to relocate him, the royal father warned: “Then you want us to move to where? It will be anarchy because there will be problems between us and the people already living where you want to take us to. We are not going anywhere. We want integration”.
According to the traditional leader, lack of government health facility within his area has been responsible for proliferation of quack health personnel such as pharmacists, medicine stores and even medical doctors, whom apart from worsening his people’s health conditions; carry out abortions, which sometimes lead to death.
The traditional ruler also regretted that Jiwa chiefdom which dates back to 1450 has a clinic which was established in 1944, but has not been improved upon and has become grossly inadequate due to population increase.
The royal father therefore tasked the Secretary to quickly apprehend and punish, particularly the two identified quack medical practitioners in Jiwa, one of whom the Agaba revealed was suspected to be the same one who disappeared from Kwali and ran to Jiwa to continue his quack practice when authorities clamped down on such illegal practice in Kwali, following an earlier tip off from the Etsu of Kwali, Dr. Shaban Audu Nizazo III.
The Secretary therefore directed the relevant authority to investigate, fish out and punish the offenders accordingly.
While responding, Bappah pledged: “Your requests will be looked into with all seriousness”, adding that he would table same, and those of other traditional rulers and medical directors to the FCT Minister for further action.
Bappah also commissioned a newly constructed pharmacy unit at Gwarinpa General Hospital and charged the staff to continue to support the Medical Directors in the delivery of health care service to the people.
Indigent residents in Abaji to get scholarship
By Chris Anioji
The physically challenged and indigent residents of Abaji are to be captured in the third phase of the Abaji Area Council’s Scholarship Programme. This disclosure was made recently by the outgoing HOD, Education, Abaji Area Council, Hajia Hadiza Abdulahi Umar at an interview with Abuja Digest Weekly in Abaji.
According to Hajia Abdulahi, a total of 1625 residents of the Area Council had earlier been captured in the scheme which she said commenced in 2017 with a budget of N12M.
Undergraduates of Colleges of Education, Polytechnics and Universities were said to have benefited from the first and second phases of the programme which she said was non-political.
Speaking on the conditions for enrolment, the educationist stated that aspiring students were required to provide admission letters, ID cards, and evidences of having been born in Abaji.
She described education as the bedrock of national development and strong weapon for fighting illiteracy .
In her words, there has always been the need for the Government to pay adequate attention to citizens’ education especially at the grassroots which in her view was needed to address traces of youth restiveness.
Abaji, she remarked, had been peaceful. A situation she traced to the Council’s priority for education.
In her message to residents of Abaji, Hajia Abdullahi appealed for residents’ prayers to enable the Area Council have funds to execute the third phase of the programme which she said would take care of the physically challenged.
Abaji wears new look as council partners FCTA on road rehabilitation
A visit to Abaji without catching a glimpse of township roads reconstructed by the Government in the Area is incomplete.
Abuja Digest Weekly’s reporter who was at the council’s headquarters on routine duty was amazed at the magnitude of road rehabilitation that had taken place in the township area of the Council .
It was a beautiful scenery to behold.
Traversing the length and breadth of Abaji township, the asphalted roads had drainage deeply constructed to avert flooding during the rainy season.
Speaking on behalf of the Council Chairman, Alhaji Abdulrahman Ajia, the HOD, Works Department of the Area Council, Engineer Obiefuna Hil, at an interview with Digest Weekly, said the multi-million naira road rehabilitation was part of the projects executed by the government in the Area Council to fulfill its campaign promises, stressing that the new road network would encourage free flow of traffic in the area.
Residents of the Area Council who spoke to Abuja Digest Weekly concerning the project, commended the council chairman’s approach to development in Abaji, describing it as holistic. To Mr Shehu Usman, an architect and resident of the the area, the project was awesome. He said it would encourage people to settle in the area.In his remark, Nathan Sunday, a resident and retired public officer said the project was the first of its kind in the history of Abaji. He appealed to Abaji people to demonstrate their support by voting the council chairman into office in the forthcoming 2019 Area Council elec