Oba (Anambra) – Property estimated at not less than N50 million have been destroyed at the Rojenny Sports Complex and Games Village, Oba, Idemili South Council Area, Anambra, by flood following days of torrential rainfall in the state.
Rojenny is an all in one Sports Complex and Tourist Centre built by a private individual in 1987 for the development of youths through sports and upliftment of the tourism sector.
A Correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) who visited the facility on Sunday reports that its Christian Chapel, Amusement Park, Zoological Garden and Badminton Court were all affected.
A long stretch of the perimeter fence, the embankment on the expressway and some buildings, including the convenience facilities were also pulled down and washed away.
The Proprietor of the complex, Chief Rommy Ezeonwuka, described the development as disaster of immense proportion.
Ezeonwuka told NAN that it was a heart-wrenching experience that an investment of such magnitude was being eroded.
He appealed to the Nigerian public to urgently intervene and salvage the sports complex which is estimated at about N25 billion.
He said it was unfortunate that the various levels of government had allowed the stadium to lie fallow, while millions of youths were on the streets looking for how to bring their talents to limelight.
The investor said that he believed that God used him to provide the facility for Nigeria and Anambra but added that it was painful that it had not been put to best use.
“What happened is a great disaster because the volume of money invested in establishing Rojenny is so enormous that this type of destruction can dampen the spirit of any investor or make him breakdown.
“Rojenny is story of a parish waiting for the priest for over 30 years, and I have been doing all that I can to maintain it; Rojenny is an already made resource waiting to be harnessed, however I am not regretting because the spirit of God is upon me.
“It is common knowledge that this place is not yielding because the government of Anambra and mangers of sports in this country have not discovered the secret and possible contribution that Rojenny can make in the country’s sports development.
“The spirit of God that gave me the inspiration to build this facility has also given me the grace to bear all these challenges and this latest disaster is enough to weigh me down.
“If it is being fully utilized, Nigeria cannot be talking about not winning medals at the Olympics or coming back empty handed from the World Cup because it has training facility for all Olympic events and they are of international standard,’’ he told NAN.
Ezeonwuka said that not less than N50 million was needed to return the facility to normal state, adding that he could not afford such amount of money at the moment.
He called on the federal and state governments to urgently intervene and render the needed assistance.
“To fix the damage that has been done by this erosion requires an estimated N50 million, and if not immediately handled, an investment of about N25 billion is at the risk of being lost to erosion and flood.
“No government, no individual will be willing to spend such money in this present day Nigeria to set up a place like Rojenny; so, we need to save this investment for the future of our youths and our Nigerian sports.
“I am crying to the Federal Government, Anambra Government and kindhearted wealthy men to come and help salvage this monument for posterity,’’ he told NAN.
Ezeonwuka blamed the flooding on the topography of the complex and diversion of flood due to construction work on nearby roads.
He also blamed the Ose road on the side if the station which had aided the pulling down of the stadium wall.
“Rojenny is on a topography which is a route to Idemili River, but all that have been controlled.
“The problem now is that the volume of flood had increased on this Aku-Ukwu, Oba, Umuoji road which was awarded and the contractor diverted the flood that was to go to Ekwulu River to Rojenny axis.
“Again, there is Ose road before the stadium where the perimeter fence has collapsed, it leads to a community of over 10,000 but these people have been cut out by gully erosion.
“This area is a disaster area and we need urgent help to check the impending environmental crisis,’’ he said.