Anambra State Governor Willie Obiano has urged the World Bank to declare a state of emergency on gully erosion in the state.
He made the call when members of a World Bank-Food and Agricultural Organisation-Federal Government Supervision Mission paid him a courtesy visit at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia.
Obiano informed the visitors led by Dr. Amos Abu that the state had a land mass of 2,855sq km out of which almost a quarter is terribly affected by gully erosion.
He said there were about 950 active and rampaging sites, lamenting that it would be a disaster in the next five years in the state if nothing was urgently done to support the state in checking the menace.
He called for a special United Nations’ intervention that would effectively bail the state out of the present predicament, which he described as another emerging disaster.
But he commended the World Bank for its current level of intervention in the state through the Nigeria Erosion and Water Management Project (NEWMAP).
He further appealed to the Bank to consider Anambra State as a special case by increasing the number of sites in its intervention priority list.
Obiano promised that the state would continue to fulfil its counterpart funding obligations, despite the current economic situation.
The World Bank Task Team Leader for the NEWMAP project, Dr. Amos Abu had informed the governor that the team was in the state to evaluate the progress of work at the gully erosion sites in the State.
He expressed satisfaction with the progress observed in the Omagba, Abagana, Amachalla and St. Thomas Aquinas/Nero’s plaza erosion sites in the State.
He assured Obiano of the Bank’s readiness to partner with the state in a swift and resounding way as it concerned erosion menace in the state.