Gloria Ikegbule

Henceforth, residents of Amaba-Ukwu Community in Bende Local Government Area of Abia State will no longer depend on water fetched from the stream for their daily domestic needs.

Recently, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, led by the Latter-Day Saints Charities (LDS), the humanitarian arm of the church, unveiled a freshly-constructed borehole in the community.

The people of Amaba-Ukwu, led by their traditional ruler, Eze Johnson, Nsukka, were quite upbeat when they came for the commissioning. The people told journalists that they had waited several years for government’s intervention, which never came.

While pouring encomium on their donor, they called on corporate organisations and well meaning Nigerians to also help in the provision of essential social services to indigent persons as part of their corporate social responsibility. Leaders of the community charged government to support non-governmental organisations like LDS that are committed to rural development.

Addressing journalists during the commissioning, Eze Nsukka said the gesture of LDS is the greatest thing that has happened in his reign.

His words: “This is the greatest thing that has happened in the last 19 years that I have been traditional ruler of this place. Today God has answered our prayers through the kind donation of members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.”

He called on government to partner with the body so that more selfless services could be rendered to people living in the rural areas.

According to members of the community, Amaba-Ukwu had for years had no access to potable water. The people depended solely on stream water for survival, he noted.

While narrating the ordeal faced by the people in sourcing for water, a resident, Ogbo Onyeike lamented that the road to the stream was quite pathetic.

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“When the young girls are coming to fetch the water at the stream, they will fall down and break their legs. People go to the bush and defecate. When the rain comes, the excreta flows into the river and this causes lots of sickness,” Onyeike noted.

George Ukegbu, another resident, expressed thanks to God that with the poor state of the streams, the residents never experienced an epidemic.

“The water situation in the community has been really terrible. We get our water from two main streams in the community. People wash and bathe in those streams and we still drink the water. God has been so good to us all these years we have never had an epidemic in this community.

“This is the first of its kind in the nine villages of Item. To have this type of water source, our heart is full of joy,” he stated.

Elder Okechukwu Imo, a leader in the church, said the Latter-Day Saints believe in providing care and love to mankind wherever they are.

“This defines what we can do in every community in the world, be it a community of Christians, Muslims and those that do not believe in God, This is a way of saying that we are all children of God.”

According to Mr. Chidi Ibeakwuzie, the Area Welfare Specialist, LDS, many communities are in need of clean water and lack access to the basic need. He pointed out that the community borehole was constructed by the church to help the people, noting that water is essential to life.

“There is no water in this community and water is essential to life. We are happy to have contributed to making life meaningful for them. Over the years, we have given this kind of humanitarian service to communities in Osun, Ogun, and Enugu states, to mention a few.

“It is our social responsibility to take care of all these communities that do not have access to clean water. We hope that other well meaning individuals will emulate this gesture to bring comfort to other people living in the rural areas,” he said.