Lunatics take over Enugu bus-stop shelters – By Gloria Uchenna (Part One)

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One of the bus-stop shelters on Chime Avenue, New Heaven Enugu, occupied by a destitute

Almost all the bus-stop shelters in Enugu, the Enugu state capital, have been taken over by lunatics and destitutes, Summit News investigation has shown.

Even those bus-stop shelters across Enugu metropolis that are not occupied by mad people have been overrun by weeds, and some of them literally upturned, and their seats vandalized. 

Many residents of the city who spoke with Summit News in an interview expressed disappointment over the take-over of the bus-stop shelters by mad and homeless people in the society.

Mrs. Juliana Eke, who resides in Mainland Emene, a suburb of Enugu, complained that pedestrians no longer find a place to take shelter when it rains or during hot weather either due to the squalid state or the bus-stop shelters, or their confiscation by people she described as “undesirable elements.”

Another female resident in the area who spoke on condition of anonymity said that the bus-stop shelters across the Enugu metropolis had become and “eyesore,” adding that the horrible state of the ones close to Akanu Ibiam International Airport has the tendency of tainting the image of the airport.

She advised the Enugu state Government not to allow the multi-million naira spent on erecting the bus-stop shelters by the previous administration to go into drains, adding that the  rehabilitation of the bus-stop shelters would help give the city a face-lift, as well as provide shelter for the people.      

Summit News recalls that in 2018, the Enugu state government approved the rehabilitation of 233 bus-stop shelters and hand rails in the Enugu metropolis.

According to the then Commissioner of Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA) Chidi Aroh, “the exercise, aimed at renewing and upgrading urban structures, would start from the dual carriageway along 82 Division, Nigerian Army, to Akwata Pedestrian Bridge by Ogbete Main Market.

He said the government also approved the construction of new bus-stop shelters in all the newly-built roads, and the relocation of five “critical” bus-stops which obstruct traffic, such as the one at the popular Agric Bank junction, Independence Layout, Enugu.

Aroh added that the “decisions were reached after the council considered the recommendations of the team of technical experts constituted to review the state of the infrastructure, and how they can be enhanced and beautified to improve the status of Enugu as the historical capital of the Southeast.”

Not a few residents of the city said that the promise to renew and upgrade urban structures was never kept by the state government.

The commissioner said the council directed that the relocation be done within five days, while the rehabilitation should be completed in six weeks “in line with the government’s determination to always deliver on its promises as quickly as possible.”

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