Nigeria vs Zambia: Host communities threaten to disrupt match

Less than two days to the anticipated between the Super Eagles of Nigeria and Chipolopolo of Zambia, the youth of the two communities of Obio Etoi and Obio Ofot hosting the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo, have reportedly threatened to disrupt the match.

Demands:

  • According to Guardian, Youth from the communities numbering about 200 with different placards alleged that despite the beautiful edifice, the communities were still unemployed, while the state government has not constructed roads into the communities as the parties agreed before the stadium was built.
  • With the inscription as, “the stadium is beautiful but the communities are suffering,” some of them, stressed that after five years of failed promises, they have decided to come out to alert the government of its earlier promises to the communities.
  • Speaking with journalists, the youth leader of Obio Etoi village, Sunday Peters, who led the protesters, said since 2011 when Julius Berger commenced work at the stadium the villagers have nothing to show for it.
  • The company blocked all diversion ways to the community with their heavy equipment and machines, at a point, we had to sell our land to maintain the road. That is why we are crying to the state government and we will continue to cry until something is done.”
  • All water from the stadium to the retention lake sometime overflows its bank, causing flooding and breeding mosquitoes to residents of the communities.”

Meanwhile, the village head of the Obio Etoi, Eteidung Ezekiel Inyang Ekott, said, “We want to let the state government know that the Memorandum of Understanding [MOU] entered between the host communities, Julius Berger and the state government has been breached.

The state Commissioner of Works, Ephraim Inyang, who came to protest venue with Information Commissioner, Charles Udo, said the road has been earmarked for construction, assuring the youth that a week from now work will commence on the road.

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