A pregnant woman is said to have died after she fell off the notorious Itoko bridge along the abandoned Ikot Akpatek- Ikwe- Odio road in ONNA local council area of Akwa Ibom state.
The bridge, located in Governor Udom Emmanuel’s home LGA is said to be in a deplorable condition as a result of the bad road said to have also swallowed several children who tried to cross it recently.
Eye witnesses said that the pregnant woman slipped into the river when she fell off the motorcycle she was crossing the bridge with after the motorcycle missed the narrow plank placed on the bridge to enable people pass across.
It was gathered that the bridge was part of a road projects awarded by the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC to one of its contractors but had abandoned the project.
This has led to further deterioration of the road, making life difficult for the people of the area while several attempts to get the commission’s authorities to listen to their plight have fallen on deaf ears.
Recently, the lawmaker representing the area in the state House of Assembly and the Deputy Chief Whip, Mr Nse Essien, drew the attention of the House to the plight of the people of the area.
“This situation has led to the collapse of many segments of the road and turning into dead trap with the Itoko Bridge claiming dozens of lives and properties including cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles, building materials and foodstuffs worth hundreds of millions of naira over the years.
“The Federal and Akwa Ibom State governments, the NDDC, the contractor, Worldwide Technologies Limited and all other relevant government agencies have all these years failed to listen to the incessant save our soul (SOS) cries of the people of the area. “The situation is so bad that market women who sell their wares at Urua Ededebo literarily have to strip themselves to be able to wade through the high and fast water currents flowing through the roads, losing market items like food stuff, provisions and cloths.
“Many children in Odio and Ikwe cannot go to the only Nursery School at Abat due to the fast and high current particularly during the rainy season,” he disclosed.

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