Thursday, April 1, 2010

O Abuja My Abuja!

As I stood on a sandhill, underneath a scanty tree barely functional as a shade from the scorching sun, overlooking the roadblock, clutching desperately unto one pure water, wondering how I got into this mess!

The day started off as every other. I got off work and set off to the immigration office, with the intention to collect my long overdue passport. I, unfortunately, like most other Nigerians, had previously handed my details to an immigration officer (of course, with a bit more money than is needed), in order to make the entire process quicker and less stressful. On this particular day, I walked into the building, past the impatient patrons and the frustrated officials, assured that my time spent in the building will be no more than 20mins. Boy did I get that wrong!

This first roadblock – NEPA don take light (power cut, no electricity, no light)! The situation proved even more exasperating for the officials to handle, as the customers were getting more restless.

There was no immediate rumbling sound of a standby generator, nor was there any reassurance that power will be restored shortly. However, everything was at a standstill.

An hour later, the lights came back on, order was restored and after another 15mins, the servers were back up (I didn’t realise it took that long for a computer to boot).

As I collected my new ECOWAS logoed passport, I shamefully resorted to thoughts of never revisiting the aforementioned office.

The second roadblock – this WAS a literal roadblock. A truck has collided with another, causing a complete blockage of both lanes going to and from Nnamdi Azikwe. After opting to try a different route through a neighbouring village, I ended up with a dust filled windscreen, an overheated engine and back to where I started off from!

Two hours later, the emergency and fire engine patrol service managed to get the accidental truck unto the sidelines, allowing for gradual clearing of the obstructed road. Only then was I able to get down from my oneiric sandhill and drive safely into town.

My point in all this being, I am sick and tired with the constant power outage, disrupting the flow of work in major government agencies, in our everyday lives period! I am disappointed in the time handling and management of critical issues, such as an accidental blockage of a major road (I can’t imagine how many people missed their flights). And most of all I am sorry for any lives lost in this disaster.

It’s only right you all witness what happened.......

Some travellers rest as they find solace under my tree

All cars brought to a standstill

The crane finally arrives to tow the truck

The truck could only be dragged unto the road side

Passengers watched and waited

The watered down residue from the truck

Exhibit No. 1

Exhibit No.2

The crew clean up after a hard day's work

Make way for the crane!

Travellers struggling to breath because of the dust

A lady waits while her shoes are being fixed by a cobbler

Unfortunately not all of us could leave in one piece!

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