Commuters groan as traders take over Oba Adesida road
By Fatima Muraina & Michael Ofulue
Commuters plying the popular Oba Adesida Road in Akure, the Ondo State capital are now groaning in pain over the activities of traders who have taken over the road causing discomfort especially during the weekends.
Investigations conducted by The Hope showed that the road which could be regarded as the nerve center of the Ondo state capital city is being taken over by traders who display their wares on the road, creating vehicular and human traffic.
Our reporter who yesterday monitored activities in the area revealed that from Toyin bookshop to the Oja Erekesan market, a distance of less than 15 poles could tàke over 30 minutes to drive .
Pedestrians were not left out. Most of the pedestrians who spoke with The Hope lamented pitiable experiences over the way in which the traders arrogantly defied traffic laws by displaying their wares on the road and scrambling for customers to patronize their wares.
Speaking with The Hope, Mr Kehinde Agbede, a commercial driver attributed the situation to the unwholesome attitude of the traders who display their wares on service lane meant for the taxi cabs.
He said the act had made their work difficult on Sundays as drivers were forced to take passengers on the road, thereby causing traffic hold up on the major road.
Açcording to Agbede, the intervention of officials of National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW has helped at preventing the traders from displaying their wares on the road on weekdays and thus assisted in free flow of vehicles.
He said a crisis between the Ibo traders and Isolo youths who insisted that nothing should be displayed on the road was recently prevented following the intervention of prominent people in the area. He claimed that the Ibo traders vowed that nothing would stop them from displaying their wares on the road.
A commuter, Mrs Eunice Boboye expressed outright displeasure on the chaotic situation especially on Sundays, saying it is very difficult to just come to the market for shopping and leave on time as a result of unwholesome attitude of the traders.
According to her, the situation is bad even on week days from 4pm, but that Sunday’s experiences is worst and unimaginable.
On the way out of the terribly situation, Boboye pleaded with the state government to act fast particularly on Sundays.
Another commuter, Mrs Florence Olaoye who described the situation as bad however applauded motorists for driving sensibly to avoid unnecessary accident or knocking down the people
He enjoined government to make some people scape goats to serve as deterrent to make people obey the traffic laws as she commended the state government traffic agents in stabilising the road during the working days.
Mr Owa David however said the traffic was as a result of population explosion in Akure, saying all developing capital cities must prepare for such explosion and traffic congestion.
“This is an urban area which is developing, but traffic agency can still control the traffic. Government should make sure that security personnel are around to control the situation. Such is going on Lagos State too.
Many of the traders declined comment as our reporter’s efforts at speaking with them were abortive. They were very hostile and not ready to comment on the issue.
Speaking with the Special Adviser to Governor on Transport, Mr. Tobi Ogunleye, said “We have banned road hawking and trading, especially along Oja-Oba area, and also banned pedestrians from crossing the road at the bridge point in Oba Adesida Road.
“We are trying to enforce that every pedestrian uses the over-head bridge, so as to reduce obstruction and create free flow of traffic.”
He however promised that the ministry would continue to adhere strictly to its mandate in discouraging unauthorised and indiscriminate parking of vehicles in the state.
He maintained that the Akeredolu-led administration is committed to making life better for people of the state.