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Published On: Tue, Oct 7th, 2014

Sallah: Transporters link low patronage to insecurity

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Transporters and commuters and have blamed low patronage of motor parks during the Sallah celebration in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), on current security challenges facing the nation’s capital and the country at large.

 Some of the transporters told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the parks had witnessed the lowest traffic for the first time during similar celebration.

One Mr. Raazak Alfa, who returned from Ibadan, said he was compelled to travel.

“Despite the fact that there is no increase in the fare, the state of the nation as per security is something to be scared of.

“This Sallah is a difficult one although I had relief when I got to Ibadan; living in Abuja is now scaring,’’ he said.

Another commuter, Mrs. Joke Adeniyi, said she was forced to travel to Ilorin to attend her mother’s 70th birthday celebration.

“It is not easy to travel in this scaring situation. But I had to go because of my mother’s birthday.

“Anything could have happened at the park or on the road; the fear of insecurity is high, truly, I did not enjoy my trip,’’ Adeniyi said.

The Chairman, Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN), FCT chapter, Mr. Olorunju Alabi, however, said the management had taken steps to provide security at the parks.

According to him; “We now conduct search on vehicles and passengers; we have also stopped indiscriminate parking around the parks.”

Alabi said that although transportation fares had not increased, the parks still witnessed poor patronage during the celebration.

A passenger, Mr. Nathan Atume, urged government to equip parks across the country with modern security gadgets.

 “Iron detectors should be made available to the parks to check vehicles and passengers for safety,’’ Atume said.

The Deputy General Manager, Corporate Communications Department (FAAN) Mrs Henritta Yakubu, told NAN that the airport witnessed heavy traffic during the celebration.

“There has been serious rush leading to traffic gridlock, especially at the domestic wing of the airport.

“Flights are fully booked in both domestic and international wings; people are flying in and out of Abuja,” she said. (NAN)

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