BY FRANCIS IGATA,ENUGU
Motorists and residents in Enugu State are beginning to heave a sigh of relief as the perennial traffic gridlock dotting major parts of Enugu metropolis and beyond are beginning to ease. This is occasioned by the massive reconstruction of roads as promised by the administration of Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi on assumption of office.
Ugwuanyi had, during his electioneering campaign tour of the state,vowed to frontally repair the dilapidated road networks that left socio-economic activities in the state at the tethers.
On assumption of office,the roads, especially Abakpa Junction-Nike Lake Road,Penoks-Nowas-Nike Lake Roads, Ikenga Hotels Junction and the Post Office Roundabout – Odenigbo Roundabout – Ogurugu Road – Ikenga Hotels Junction and the Enugu Road Nsukka Junction – Umezebi – Nru junction – University Gate, were dotted with yawning craters,major portions washed off even as some of then were at the verge of being cut off.
Rolling his sleeves, Ugwuanyi left naysayer’s tongues wagging when, last November,he flagged off the reconstruction of Obechara Road Junction – Umuakashi Mechanic Village – Ikenga Hotels Junction and the Post Office Roundabout – Odenigbo Roundabout – Ogurugu Road – Ikenga Hotels Junction and the Enugu Road Nsukka Junction – Umezebi – Nru Junction – University Gate, all within the university town of Nsukka, defying the crude oil price glut that bashed the allocation from the Federal Government.
Others roads undergoing construction include Ohom Orba Junction – Imilike Ani – Ezimo Uno – Ezimo Agu – Imilike Ogbodu Aba – Obollo Afor Roads , all designated as Udenu Ring roads as they are located within Udenu council area and are linked to one another.
Ugwanyi also,last week, affirmed his determination to construct Inyaba-Amagunze Bridge to alleviate the problems of the people in the area, cut off by the collapsing bridge
The Inyaba-Amagunze Belly Bridge,constructed with wood in the 70s, wobbles at the impact of weight even as it has shown pronounced signs of caving in.
Mr. Johnson Chukwu,a motorist,stated: “These roads are major economic corridors that will, no doubt,boost socio-economic activities especially at the rural areas. Already,the usual traffic gridlock that subjects us to excruciating hours of driving has thinned out even though the jobs are only 60 percent completed.
“As it is,the value of properties along these corridors have increased because developers now have access to properties. Once there is accessible road,other social amenities will follow suit.
“Farmer will now find it easy to evacuate their produce from the rural areas and earn commensurate money for their input rather than when they were forced to dispose their produce for fears of perishing.
“The rate at which we visit auto mechanics will drastically reduce now because the road is smooth,devoid of yawning craters that dismantle vehicle bolt joints,shock absorbers, tyriod ends anong others which inflict holes in our pockets. “Its all good. It ends well because it starts well. Governor Ugwuanyi has started well. When the time comes,we will reciprocate and remind him that he started well.”