By Richards Nzemeke
Port Harcourt – A cross section of traders in Oyigbo, headquarters of Oyigbo Local Government Area of Rivers, have commended the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari and urged him to come to their aid.
Specifically, they want the President to use the opportunity of his victory at the Saturday presidential poll to fix the dilapidated Eleme – Oyigbo axis of Port Harcourt – Aba road.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the portion of the road had been in bad shape since 2009.
Residents said some of the road users had died and goods worth millions of naira destroyed in the last 10 years.
Mrs Comfort Chike, a trader in fabrics in Mile 1 market, said the dilapidated road often waste a lot of useful time, energy and money, which could have been expended on more productive ventures.
According to her, the Federal Government cannot be talking about growing the economy either through manufacturing, agriculture or industry, without first fixing bad roads.
Chike also stressed the urgent need to fix the roads in a bid to enhancing transportation of goods and services in the area.
Mr Paul Nwachukwu, a vehicles tyres dealer, said the implications of the bad road is that commercial vehicles plying it are now reduced as some take Oyigbo-Igbo-etche road to oil mill, a kind of “Israelite journey.”
He noted that the journey from Oyigbo to Oil mill bus-stop that would have taken less than 15 minutes, now take some hours, especially on Wednesdays due to the Oil Mill market day.
“In short, some commuters, who are not lucky enough on Wednesdays, sleep on that portion of the road due to the gridlock that characterise the day,” Nwachukwu said.
He added that the road is only better during the dry seasons.
“That’s why many described the flooded portion of the dilapidated road as lake Tangayika in Tanzania,” he said.
NAN reports that the transport fare from Oyigbo – Oil Mill has consequently, increased from N100.00-N150.00.