Some major roads and streets in Abuja are usually dark or poorly lit at night, raising security and safety concerns for many residents, some of whom spoke with our reporters. The ever busy Airport Road is most times thrown in darkness creating fear in the minds of motorists who ply the road late at night.
A resident, who shared his experience with our reporters on condition of anonymity, said when he returned from Lagos last week and was driving to Wuse II from the Airport in the darkness by 11:00 pm, he was scared. “I remember, I hit a pothole just before Lugbe and I thought maybe it was a big stone, the type that robbers put on the road to stop vehicles and rob the owners. I said to my mind that whatever happened, I was not going to stop,” he said.
Our reporters also observed that lights on Herbert Macaulay Way too do not work most of the times. A phone seller in Wuse Market, Mr Idris Dogo, also expressed concern over his safety when he closes at the market at night and has to walk home in the darkness. “I use to close late here at times and the place use to be dark and that has forced me to stop closing late at night for fear of being attacked by hoodlum,” he said. “I have heard several people complain of their phone been snatched in some dark spots and it’s very bad. The authorities involve should do something about it urgently,” he added. City News also learnt that AYA-Nyanya Road, Kasim Ibrahim Way, Sani Abacha Way and so many other streets in Wuse and the city centre as well as Garki are dark at night.
A motorist, John Ebube, who plies the AYA-Nyanya Road, told our reporter that hoodlums lurk in the darkness and come out to snatch phones and handbags from passengers, especially when there is traffic jam on the road. “There is no security on this road because the street lights are not working and hoodlums take advantage to hide in the darkness to oppress residents who are held up in the traffic jam on the road,” he said.
When contacted, the Director, FCT Facility Maintenance and Management, Olaniyi Olaloye, an engineer, who said the problem was from the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) source, adding that ever since the Transmission Company of Nigeria station in Apo caught fire, light has been a major issue in the FCT. “The light in most areas is being rationed, some areas will have light while some will not so that is the issue we are facing now. You can imagine we have been on generator set since morning in office and it’s not been easy,” he told our reporter on phone.
He assured that the FCT administration was working hard to resolve the problem adding that they have been speaking with the Abuja distribution company to see what could be done to tackle the issue.