By Chimezie Anaso
Oba (Anambra) – The Ohanaeze Ndi-Igbo on Monday urged the Federal and State governments to invest in the existing cultural and tourism facilities to create job opportunities and curb crime among the youth.
Chief Damian Okeke, the Chairman of Ohanaeze in Anambra, made the call when he led the leadership of the organisation to inspect the cultural heritage and sports facilities at Rojenny Tourists and Sports centre, Oba, Idemili South Local Government Area.
Okeke decried the dilapidation of the zoo, games and sports facilities in the centre built over 30 years ago.
He discouraged the acquisition of new lands and investments in similar facilities while the existing ones were collapsing.
According to him, investment in tourism and sports rather than purchasing and spending on arms and armoured vehicles would curb crime and youth restiveness in the country.
“It is good that this facility was set up here when people were not settled around this area over 30 years ago but it is painful that it is not just being under utilised but allowed to decay.
“This place is not in line with the vision of Ezeonwuka, if it was positioned around Onitsha, Nnewi, Oba and Obosi, it could be used as a rediscovery ground for the jobless youths.
“We are calling on the Federal and state governments to as a matter of necessity come and see how they can upgrade this place and revamp the dilapidated facilities for effective utilisation.
“There is no need to try to build new amusement, wild life, sports facilities while the ones we have are collapsing,” he said.
Okeke said Ohanaeze would take the matter to Anambra government for effective action.
In his remark, Chief Rommy Ezeonwuka, the owner of the tourist/games facility lauded the leadership of Ohanaeze for being in the vanguard for equity and justice for all.
He said that Nigeria should take a cue from Jamaica where the talent and strength of the youth were channeled to sports.