Residents living in the vicinity of Gwagwalada abattoir have decried poor access roads and water channels and called on government to build canal to control continuous flooding in the area. Some residents, who spoke to LEADERSHIP, said that even before the collapse of the only bridge in the area, Okada riders have stopped conveying people to the area, which according to them, makes movement in and out of the area very difficult.
An Okada rider in the area, Simon revealed that the abattoir road is at a very bad situation. “Let me inform you that once you plied that road, you must wash your bike, due to mud.” He added that the area is covered with dark mud, flowing from the abattoir and called on the government to repair the road. According to one of the residents, Goodness Ayorigo, “There are empty houses in this place because of fear of water and means of transportation. When it rains, water will submerge our houses, destroy our property and sometimes people will die. Because of that, most houses here are vacant,” she said.
Another source which pleaded anonymity said that the collapse bridge is a minor issue in the area compared to what comes to residents when it rains and this has been happening on a yearly base and called on government to build canal that will take care of the water which overflows from the river to the area.
Also, Ujunwa who lives in the area told our reporter that the entire neighborhood is not safe when it is rainy season, adding that residents sleep with one eye close for fear of unknown. Many families, according to her, have lost loved ones to the flood that comes due to poor water channels in the area.
She disclosed that residents have made efforts to create access road and drainages for the community but the money raised fund was entrusted into the hands of a greedy fellow who disappeared with it hence, the residents have to endure the pain. She revealed that the present chairman of Gwagwalada area council, Hon Adamu Mustapha has personally visited the community twice to ascertain the level of damage and seriousness of the flooding. She added that the area council has started the construction of the damaged bridge, but noted that work has stopped due to the flooding nature of the area.
LEADERSHIP observed that, houses within the area actually have been submerged in water up to lintel level in the past. Our reporter also observed that the collapsed bridge has been removed for construction of a new one
When contacted, the vice chairman Gwagwalada area council, Hon. Kasim Mohammed said even with the dwindling economic situation of the nation, the council was able to venture into construction of roads and provision of other infrastructures to it masses.
“One of such is the construction of one way road to the market. After that the plan of this government is to look into other road projects of which that of abattoir are of great priority,” he said.
In regard to the collapsed bridge, he said due process has to be followed but work will soon commence on the bridge to provide a lasting solution to it.
“Work has actually begun on the said bridge. The Gwagwalada area council chairman, Hon Adamu Mustapha said he is committed to improving the welfare and wellbeing of the residents of the council.”