It is bad enough that the Awka Capital City has few major roads, but it is absolutely atrocious that the one major road in the heart of the Capital City cannot be accessed by commuters simply because the police do not want traffic to pass through their headquarters. The place in contention is the Zik Avenue by Nibo Junction where the headquarters of the Anambra State Police Command is situated.
For some time now, that axis has been blocked to traffic, often causing traffic gridlock as commuters are forced to divert to the back of the police headquarters. The traffic situation here during morning hours and late evenings is usually chaotic.
In the beginning, it was thought that the barricade was a temporary measure, but with time, it has become clear that the police have no plans of removing it and freeing up traffic. This is not the first time the police would try this. In the previous administration, the police had similarly barricaded the road but were forced to remove it following complaints to the state government by road users.
Now the barricade is back and it seems it is going to stay. We may not know the reason behind that barricade, but whatever it may be, the police have no right to cordon off a busy road which happens to be the only major one there.
Indeed, if all the security agencies in the state begin to barricade roads running through their head offices, then road users will have no place to go.
Before now, the practice by the police was to barricade the road at night. That could be condoned as, by that time, there is little or no traffic. But doing so in the day time when traffic is heavy, is certainly not the right thing to do.
The plight of road users should always be considered in such matters. The situation there often causes workers to report late in the office. And being that further down that stretch of road is where there exists the worst traffic situation in Awka (the Amawbia-expressway junction), the action by the police becomes highly unnecessary.
We therefore call on the Anambra State Government to prevail on the police to free up that road that passes through the police headquarters.
If the idea is to secure the place, we believe that the police are more than capable to do that without subjecting the populace to hardship.
We hope that this situation will not continue.