By EricJames Ochigbo, NEWS AGENCY OF NIGERIA

Residents of Sabon Lugbe, Lugbe District, Abuja have called for urgent intervention by the government on the deteriorating condition of the only access road to the community.

The residents from Aso and Taproot Estates made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday, in Abuja.

The district comprises different estates and other settlements, which includes Sallybest Estate, Daysprig Estate, Vergas Estate, KYC Estate among other settlements in the area.

They said that the road was the only access connecting the community to the Airport Road from which they could then connect to other parts of the city.

The Chairman, Aso Estate Residents Association, Mr Folorunsho Okeji, said that the estate had been in existence for the past 20 years, constructed by Aso Savings and Loans.

Okeji said that the central culvert which served as major drainage from other area, crossing under the road was at the verge of collapsing.

The chairman explained that should the culvert collapsed, it would not only affect residents of the community but others surrounding settlements as well as where the water comes from.

He said that some parts of the road had greatly eroded, noting that residents had placed expired tyres in dangerous areas to caution unsuspecting road users of falling into the pit.

“It is the only road serving us in and out of this community but in the last seven years, more developments have taken place inside the area which has caused increase in the demand of the road.

“It attracted heavy duty vehicles like truck carrying cements and so on; the road is heavily degraded now.

“We have been managing it as estates and with a few individuals in this area over the last five years, but it is getting worse and more expensive to do anything.

“Right now, as it is, I am not sure it can survive another rainy season; if nothing is done now, it will cut off and we will be in real trouble as a community.

“We are appealing to government, the Minister of FCT, Satellite Towns Development Department, as a matter of urgency, to help us fix this road,” he said.

Also speaking, the Chairman, Taproot Estate Residents Association, Mr Mathias Ebiega, appealed to relevant authorities to come to the aid of the community.

He said that the road had progressively degraded in the last three years and all community self-help had failed to stand the erosion.

“This is an appeal for assistance regarding the road that is failing, if you look behind me, this culvert leads to several estimates behind me.

“It is already going bad; this community houses about 20 estates and all of us use this same bridge to access our estates.

“It has been degrading for the past three years, initially we made efforts to control the erosion with bags of sands but whenever it rains, it keeps eroding the sand and this is where we are today.

“We want those in authority to help us fix the road, fix the bridge, the roadside drainages and equally from the express way down into the community; this is our plea and what we are calling for,” he said.

Another resident, Dr Babatunde Abegunde, who had lived in the area for over 18 years said that there had been a steady increase in population, houses and businesses without commensurable infrastructural development.

According to him, they have not felt any government presence and the road has progressively worsened.

“Here we are with this singular bridge linking the road to the main expressway virtually gone, sooner than later, this will give way.

“It is a time bomb, sooner than later, the bridge will breakdown and  we will be cut off from the express.

“Something has to be done, we are appealing to everyone, especially AMAC, they are collecting tenement rates and we do not feel their presence,” he said.

Also, a former Chairman of Taproot Estate Residents Association, Mr Matthew Babatunde, said that residents who were willing to pay tenement fees should also have something to benefit.

“We are supposed to have something to enjoy as citizens of Nigeria and the FCT for us to pay; we know it is our obligation to pay but there should be something for us to enjoy.

“I want to appeal to the government, those who are responsible for this in the FCT, AMAC, Federal Government, Federal Housing Authority, Ministry of Works and Housing to have mercy on us and attend to this issues before it gets out of hand completely.

“This road cannot survive another rainy season, by the next rainy season, this place will completely wash away and it will cut off the entire community from the FCT,” he said.

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