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Abu Lolo’s roads: A non-indigene’s view

Many observers have wondered whether there is an ideological backing to the activities of Governor Abu Lolo’s administration of Niger State, and have without due…

Many observers have wondered whether there is an ideological backing to the activities of Governor Abu Lolo’s administration of Niger State, and have without due evaluation dismissed the administration as lacking in any concrete precept. Others on the other hand have consistently submitted that the current administration in Niger State posses an ideology that is reflected in the several developmental strides of the government.

It is however, the strong opinion of this writer (a non-indigene living in Minna) that the government of Abubakar Sani Bello has a unique philosophy behind its leadership strides, though subtle, it is reflected in the impactful projects and programmes being executed by the government across different spheres of development in the state.

Prior to the emergence of the current administration, objective observers may, if willing, attest to the unfortunate state of the roads in Minna. The previous administration left behind a legacy of abandoned projects, including unfinished roads. Part of the core drive of the Sani Bello’s administration is the completion of abandoned, but very crucial infrastructural initiatives.

One can easily recollect the prompt completion of the Kure Ultra Modern market road, the very important Sabon Gari road, and Kuta road respectively, within months of the administration.

And as the administration gradually found its feet and took off properly, there emerged the initiation and complete reconstruction of strategic roads in the state capital and other places as well.

It is significant to submit that the reconstruction of these roads was influenced by the continuous demand to expand the road network in Minna, to accommodate the ever increasing human and vehicular traffic being witnessed in the capital, and to create an enabling environment for economic and social activities to thrive, for the betterment of the people.

It also suffices to posit that, there cannot be a better ideology than one that is people-centered and propelled by the passion to make positive impacts in people’s lives.

Consequently, the administration also reconstructed the following roads in Minna: Dutsen-kura to Kpakungu, UK Bello to Sabon Garri, Brighter and Himma roads, etc. to say nothing of numerous roads in other towns such as Bida and Kagara.

The centrality of these roads to the economic life of the capital cannot be overemphasized. The flagship of these strategic roads is the Dutsen Kura to Kpakungu road. There used to collect an impassable traffic gridlock at the Kpakungu roundabout on many days of the week before Lolo came. But that has disappeared now because of the alternative Lolo provided. Even Okada riders didn’t want to carry passengers through Kpeganu before, but now everyone frolics on it as if the problem never existed.

This means that development does not occur as a result of some miraculous happenstances but as a result of deliberate and practical efforts commiserate with the available resources. The execution of realistic projects such as roads (re)construction therefore is fundamental to the pursuit of infrastructural development drive, as this does not only beautify the city but also improves the living conditions of the inhabitants directly. Decongestion, road accidents reduction, provision of alternative routes and free traffic flow are some of the obvious and immediate derivable benefits of these road projects.

Thus, one cannot help but applaud the administration for these salient strides, especially considering the limited media coverage it enjoys. This government unlike previous ones seems not to be too enthusiastic about media coverage and projection of its affairs; (but an unheard government is equivalent to a dead government) preferring instead, that the good people whose lives have been directly touched buy these projects shall serve as testimonies to its impacts in their lives.

However, more than just depending on the goodwill of the people, the government must develop concrete channels through which the media must play a key role of drawing the public’s attention to the progressive undertakings being carried out across the state, otherwise, the public space would continue to assume that nothing is happening.

In conclusion, the government must intensify its commitment to more people-centered projects as well as endeavour to spread its projects across the state such that its impact can be felt in all the geopolitical zones. Even though in partnership with the World Bank through RAMP, the state has built 400 kilometers of rural roads.

Terkimbi Williams, Bosso Estate, Minna.

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