– Road Repairs: Questions Arising from Calabar South –
Are road repairs done to please people’s eyes or done to guarantee people’s safety? The answer to that question may arise from recent developments in Calabar, capital of Cross River State, Nigeria.
Less than two weeks ago, a report credited to News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) disclosed that the Cross River State Road Maintenance Agency has commenced the rehabilitation of bad portions of road along the 12 kilometer carnival routes and other areas within the Calabar Metropolis.
According to the report, Oqua Edet-Oqua, Director General of the Agency, stated that his Agency is embarking on the repairs because of the importance of the routes to the Calabar carnival.
He reportedly said: “I am giving you my assurance that the roads along the carnival routes will be ready for use in due course and the carnival participants will have a better road to dance on”.
Apparently, this explains why bad portions of roads such as IBB Way, Marian Road, Mary Slessor Road and MCC Road are being fixed. They all serve as “roads along the carnival routes”.
Before this rehabilitation, the online edition of Vanguard newspaper (Wednesday, 17 October 2017) reported that: “From the beginning of Calabar Municipality to the bordering Calabar South, the two local governments that make up the metropolis, NDV counted more than 800 potholes both on major roads, by passes and streets….
Inundated by gaping craters are Atimbo Road to Jonathan By-pass, Airport By-pass, Chamley Street by White House Street, White House by Hart Street, Bedwell Street, Calabar Road, Howell by Mayne Avenue, Howell by Yellow Duke and New Airport by Ikot Ekpene Udo Street”.
Although Atamunu Street in Calabar South is not mentioned in that report, the street is strewn with potholes. A deep one exists there, close to the junction between Mount Zion street and Yellow Duke street.
Also, Ekpo Abasi Street in Calabar South, is omitted in that report. Curiously, a portion of that street near the junction that leads to Cross River University of Technology (CRUTECH) wore different looks between Wednesday, November 22, 2017 and Friday, November 24, 2017. That hitherto bad patch of the street was hastily repaired on the eve of CRUTECH’s convocation ceremony held two days ago.
See pictures of the difference below:
That ceremony was graced by dignitaries including the Governor of Cross River State and Bayelsa State respectively, the National Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), prominent traditional rulers and several others.
Is it possible that the repair of that portion of the street was done to impress those dignitaries?
Equally, why is New Airport road dotted with several bad spots? That road leads to Anantigha, headquarters of Calabar South Local Government Council.
Are these roads waiting to receive dignitaries before they receive priority attention?
Should the comfort of dancers on roads take precedence over the safety of drivers and passengers of vehicles?
Answers to those questions may be “blowing in the wind”.
- Cornelius Ellah
Facebook: Cornelius Ellah
Picture Credit: Elton Essesien, year 2 student, Department of Mass Communication, CRUTECH