The people of Ikot Nkebre community in Calabar Municipality of Cross River State have expressed worry over the incessant attacks on contractors handling the erosion control project in the area.
They said that the attacks by hoodlums had halted work on the project, and with the rainy season, they are afraid that the situation might get worse, especially if the project is discontinued or abandoned as a result of the unwarranted attacks.
The Community Liaison Officer (CLO) of the company handling the project, Mr. Edem-Effiom, described the attacks as unnecessary, adding that the community youths and elders were disturbed by the unfortunate crisis.
“We plead that those behind the attacks on the contractors and workers at work should stop, for the sake of the community. The contractors have recorded some areas that were totally washed off by the gully”.“The contractors came on board and helped some people to recover their houses that were threatened”.
Another member of the community said the gully, which started in 2017, had left at least three persons dead with property worth millions of Naira destroyed.
“If they don’t anchor this erosion channel properly, what happened before will repeat itself. Whoever is behind the attacks should have sympathy for this community”, he said.
The Project Director of the company, Mr George Brown, said that work on the entire project had reached 95 percent completion with only the remediation work left.
According to him, “On the day the hoodlums struck, national officials from the Nigerian Erosion and Watershed Management Project came to our facility.
They beat up our workers and seized our trucks also”.