Frank Nweke Jr, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), in Enugu State for the upcoming general elections, has reaffirmed his commitment and promise to immediately improve the lives of people in urban slums as his administration will pay particular attention to urban renewal.
He said this on a tour of Bunker, an urban slum in Enugu City on Monday. Noting that he had visited the community a few times in the past, Nweke stated that the poor living conditions of thousands of residents who live there had far-reaching economic and social effects on the State and must be addressed with urgency.
“As you find your way over gutters and through the maze of tiny, poorly built homes, the poor sanitary conditions, poor access to good education, healthcare and other basic necessities of life stares you in the face.
“Consider the implications for public health, for general security, for their personal economy and their dignity. Look at the children. What do they have to look forward to or aspire to living in a place like this? Where will they direct their energy, curiosity and excitement? Crime is rife as a means of survival. Unplanned pregnancies are prevalent and lead to further health, economic and social challenges” he noted.
Charging the eager residents at different stops on the tour to vote for APGA, the governorship candidate reassured them of his commitment to the transformation of the community, starting with the provision of basic necessities as education, healthcare, functional waste disposal systems and an improved road network.
He went on to address the inadequate shelter available to the residents, sharing that his administration’s medium to long-term goal will involve the regeneration of the area and others like it in Enugu into liveable, safe, and sustainable communities
“Our government will work to provide social housing in key areas and our development plan includes working with bilateral organisations such as the UN Habitat which is responsible for promoting socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all.
“The opportunities are there and we will explore them and deploy every means necessary to guarantee the total human security and dignity of our people.
“Ultimately, we want to improve our residents’ sense of self-worth, their employment options, educational opportunities, and social interaction with mainstream society schemes and reduce the inequalities that currently exists” he said.
In closing, he assured the leaders of the community of a return visit when sworn in as the Governor of Enugu State, God-willing.