Residents, Users react to Akoka-Bariga Road Construction
By Nwaneri Godspower, Bankole Demiladeogo, Adiefe Jude Olisaemeka, Atitebi Tobi, Aiyepola Olaoluwakiitan and Muhammadulfatiu Adepeju
recent decision of the Lagos state government to reconstruct and widen the
famous Akoka-Bariga road has brought mixed reactions among residents of Akoka
and the road users alike. Especially for those who may have to part with some
feet of their real estate, the news is a hard gulp to swallow.
Speaking to UNILAG Sun, a regular user of the road, Sam Ejiwumi, said that he believes that the project, if completed in time, would have a positive impact on the community. He, however, remarked that road constructions in Lagos are known to exceed their due time of completion.“The fact that there is no median, no demarcation, vehicles tend to just face oncoming traffic causing roadblocks”, he said.
He also stated that “because of the on-going construction, the road is not smooth which is really causing A lot of damage to the car” and as a result, led to more expense on repairs.
|Pictures from the ongoing construction|
Meanwhile, Ejiwunmi commented that
whoever has built an illegal structure on government reserved lands must be
ready to lose it at any time. If they can, however, prove that the government approved
their acquisition and permanent use of the areas now marked to be recaptured,
Ejiwunmi believed that the wisest thing would be to sue the government for
breach of contract.
A regular transport service provider on the route, Mr Peter Ofili lamented the consistent traffic situation posed by the construction. He said, “the rate of movement since the construction began, has not been so smooth. It’s affecting us because we constantly witness serious traffic”. He was however of the opinion that the widening of the road would benefit him as well as other transportation service providers.
For David, a student of the University of Lagos who is also a regular user of the road, the reconstruction brings a different pain. He expressed dissatisfaction over the increased traffic gridlock on the road since the project started and the ‘uncomfortable hike’ in the cost of commuting. However, Michael Udeuba, another student who frequents the road, expressed a contradicting opinion. Michael praised the intent behind the project which, to him, has brought significant improvement to the traffic on the road.