By Ifeoma Ezenyilimba
Contrary to the recent uproar in the media that the renaming of Abakaliki Street in Awka, Anambra State, was to belittle the people of Ebonyi State, the Chairman of Awka South L.G.A, Anambra State, Mr. Leo Nwuba, has said that the Government of Anambra State has the interest of the people of Ebonyi State at heart, and has named one of the best streets in Awka, after Abakaliki.
The new Abakaliki Street, Awka, which runs from Club Road, across Queen Suites Hotel, through St Joseph the Worker's Catholic Chaplaincy to Enugu-Onitsha Expressway at the Parktonia Hotel end of the road, has clear signs that identified it as Abakaliki Street on both ends.
Speaking when he led the management team of the Awka South LG Council to the official naming of the new Abakaliki Street, on June 22, 2018, the LG boss, Mr. Leo Nwuba, condemned insinuations that the renaming of the old Abakaliki Street was ill-intended.
He maintained that the directive from the Anambra State Government to rename the said Old Abakaliki Street which had been notorious for night clubbing, prostitution and other bad activities in Awka, to Club Road, was to give the people of Abakaliki in particular and the Ebonyi people in general, a good name.
According to Nwuba, the people of Abakaliki had been very supportive of Gov Willie Obiano, and so, the governor insisted that the notorious road be named after nobody, hence its new name, Club Road, which he said was nobody's name, while an alternative street, and a better one, was given the name, Abakaliki Street.
This was even as he assured that in line with the unique security mechanism of Gov Willie Obiano, the eagle eyes of the security operatives were always on Club Road to checkmate vices.
The chairman described as unacceptable, the bad meaning given to the renaming of the said street, saying that the Awka South LG in particular and the Anambra State Government in general had a long standing good relationship with the people of Abakaliki.
Nwuba urged the people of Abakaliki to accept the new street in good faith, and encourage the long standing good relationship that had existed between them and Awka South LG and the Anambra State Government.
On whether the new Abakaliki Street was formerly named after anyone, the LG boss said from their records, the street was not encumbered in anyway. He observed that the street was just identified as Iyiagu Exit, and did not belong to anybody before the naming.