Commuters Stranded in Ado Ekiti as FedPoly Staff, Students Protest Poor State of Road

Gbenga Sodeinde in Ado Ekiti

For several hours yesterday, road users on the ever-busy Ado-Ekiti federal highway linking the state with Ondo, Kogi, and Abuja among other destinations, were stranded as angry students and some staff of the Federal Polytechnic blocked the road in protest over poor state of the road network in Ekiti State.

The road also links important institutions such as the state Government College, Ado-Ekiti, the Federal Silos Centre, the state Cargo Airport under construction, and Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti and its Multi-System Hospital.

The protesters in their large number prevented both commuters and motorists from passing across the road, thereby causing heavy traffic congestion, which made all road activities to stand still for the greater part of the day.

The angry protesters, who were  armed with placards with various inscription such as: ‘Save our soul’, ‘Fix Abuad road now’, all Federal roads in Ekiti are now death trap’, barricaded the road, thus causing heavy traffic congestion which came to a stand still for several hours to press home their demands.

In a separate interview, the Chairman, Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Polytechnics, Mr. Sunday Akomolafe; Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), Mr. Adebayo Daramola, and Chairman, Non Academic Staff Union, Adebayo Abubakar, said the protest became necessary after the government turned deaf ear to their plea over the years regarding the road.

Another student, who pleaded anonymity, said they had been coping with the situation, expecting that the situation would change soon, until few days ago when scores of parents and newly matriculated students of the polytechnic had to trek the about 15-kilometre road back to the city, because of non-availability of vehicles to convey them back.

According to them, the road has become a death trap, alleging that more than five persons have died this year as a result of accidents occasioned by the poor state of the road.

They noted that they have on several occasions contributed personal income to repair the road but its condition was beyond patching but a total reconstruction.

They vowed to continue to barricade the road until the government takes necessary action.

Some of the motorists and commuters stranded in the traffic commended the polytechnic staff for the courage to call out the government.

The motorists affirmed that they spent all their earnings maintaining their vehicles as a result of the damages caused by the road.

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