By Stanley Onyekwere with agency report
As the rainy season sets in, some residents of satellite towns in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have decried the deplorable state of some roads in the towns.
While some complained of lack of maintenance of the roads, others decried the slow pace of work in on-going road projects, thereby leading to loss of time and other human resources on the roads, especially in high population density such as Idu -Karimo, Karu, Nyanya, Gwagwalada, Dei-dei, Zuba and Bwari respectively.
They said the situation would make movement difficult for the residents.
It was envisaged after physical development commenced in 1980 following the production and certification of the Abuja Master Plan, which made provision for four Phases within the 250 square kilometers of the Federal Capital City, would be achieved in 25 years, but 38 years on, only about 25 percent has been developed, which comprises 11 Districts and two Sector-Centres.
Checks revealed that despite the efforts of the FCT administration through the Satellite Towns Development Agency (STDA) to open up the satellite towns and suburbs in the territory, there is little or nothing to show for the efforts in terms of basic amenities, to ease living conditions of the people.
Worse still, is its damaging impact on businesses and other working environment, because of obvious distortions on the routine flow of activities in these places, as people (actors and spectators alike) now get swallowed up in the ensuing confusion and chaotic hard reality of the much touted novel transport policy.
A resident of Kuje, Mr. Yusuf Yakub, FCT, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that many roads in the area were not motorable.
“If you drive round Kuje, you will observe that most of the roads are very bad and we don’t know what plans the government has for the roads in 2014.
“The construction of dual road on the Kuje-Gwagwalada route has been on for some time but they are yet to complete it.
“The Kuje Area Council appears not to be very functional and we expect the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) to intervene,’’ he said.
Another resident, Mr Harrison Chukwuma, who resides at Kubwa, complained that the inner streets in Kubwa were not maintained.
“Most of the roads in Kubwa have been tarred but the inner streets are not tarred. This makes them impassable, particularly during rainy seasons,’’ he said.
He therefore advised STDA to urgently address the situation.
Also, a resident of Jikwoyi, Mr Michael Udeora, also complained of bad roads in Jikwoyi, and advised the STDA to step into the situation.
“Most of the inner roads in Karu and Jikwoyi are in a bad state. The government should repair them as a matter of priority,” he said.
The Director of STDA, Mr. Tukur Bakori, said that the agency had been forced to prioritise its projects due to paucity of funds.
“We have decided to prioritise and complete existing projects as fast as possible. For now, we don’t have any new projects. That will make us to effectively manage our resources.
“Some of our priority projects include the Karshi-Apo road, which will check traffic logjam in the Nyanya-Mararaba axis, and the Kuje-Gwagwalada road,’’ he said.
Bakori said the benefits of such prioritisation would manifest before the end of 2014, when the urban renewal projects in the satellite towns would have been completed.