Nigeria: Harnessing the tourism potentials of Azumini Blue River in Abia State


The trip to Azumini Blue River has been done and dusted. It was a media/amusement tour organized by the Abia State Mass Mobilization Agency, ASMMA, ably led by the Director General, Chief Paddy Anyatonwu.

The organizing officer and ASMMA Media Chief, Mr Nwadike Chidiebere displayed managerial competence in organizing this highly successful outing. At least 40 Abians, 99% of whom are youths took part in the trip. I enjoyed the trip.

Beyond the present enjoyment however, I saw with my entrepreneurial eyes, the treasures hidden in this river that could give Abia State a lift if harnessed.

One of the activities enjoyed today were boat rides in the river. I didn’t participate in it but as the boats were rowing into the water and back to base, I wondered what it would look like if Abia State organized a BOAT REGATTA in this river in December this year and afterwards. This is an entertainment and money making sport currently enjoyed in Rivers and Baylesa States. Abia State can enjoy same.

Along the bank of the river stretching from its source in Okpu Umuobo through Ogbor Hill to Azumini, I saw stretches of industrial and tourist ventures that can yield billions of dollars each year and create unimaginable numbers of employment opportunities for all. I saw in my spirit, an ABIA STATE ZOO attracting tourists from everywhere and yielding money to us.

I saw an ABIA STATE LIVESTOCK RANCH, rearing all sorts of livestock including cattle, goats, rabbits, and others in addition to fisheries and poultry factories. I saw them producing meat, milk, hides and skin, manures, both for local consumption and export.

I saw an ABIA ORCHARD, producing various fruits and vegetables for our health and nourishment.

I saw stretches of amusement parks with beaches, providing relaxation opportunities for both Abia people and strangers. In addition, I saw busy hotels and guest houses built for the purpose of helping to cater for tourists at the Blue River.

I saw cinemas and theatres showing movies and stage dramas, musical performances and comedies to enable people relax.

I saw very busy motor parks at the Azumini junction where tourists land before entering the Blue River Area. I saw tourists from Abia, Akwaibom Rivers States and beyond, trooping to the Blue River to see, and relax.
Local transporters using buses, Keke, taxis and motorcycles were seen, very busy.

I saw traders from Aba relocating to Azumini in order to cater for the needs of tourists and employees at the Blue River. And for this reason, a big market was built for them.

I saw the local people selling more of their farm products especially their fresh Palm wine, coconuts and raffia products.

I saw schools getting established in Azumini to cater for the educational needs of new settlers, especially those employed in the various business ventures in the Blue River.

And I saw myself taking an active part in making these things happen.

Then I told myself that all these are possible. They are possible when our leaders decide to invest in these potentials or facilitate private investment in them.
And I believe that that time is near, as the new dispensation sets in in May 2019, with the governor, senators, Reps and others in charge.

Abia State is extremely blessed with sustainable wealth!

By Nnaemeka Nwokocha

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