People in the South and East are complaining about security officers’ actions and obstructions

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The fact that the governors of Anambra and Enugu states have done nothing to alleviate the traffic congestion that security personnel are generating on our roads continues to baffle me. The route from Awka to Enugu has so many checkpoints; how is that possible?

The fact that these individuals aren’t taking any action about security is the most concerning factor. Simply said, they obstruct traffic and make things worse for everyone. If you refuse to pay the boys working for them money, that’s the only time they remember to search you. Sitting in the shade, they watch as the local lads flag down drivers and park anyone who declines to pay.

Regarding those boys, I am really unhappy. Their job is to conduct errands for military guys, therefore if they see that you aren’t following their orders, they’ll simply park you. Quite risqué folks.

One of the transportation businesses’ drivers, Mr. Kelechi Okoro, has lodged the aforementioned grievance.

The congestion caused by the large number of police and military personnel was his main gripe with the zone.

This reporter recently endured the hardships of road travelers on a round trip over the Enugu-Onitsha Expressway, traveling from Awka to Enugu and back.

The route began at Aroma junction in Awka and ended at Anambra after passing via Nnamdi Azikiwe University in Awka and Amansea.

It was surprising that this reporter encountered a number of checkpoints on a short stretch of road—less than four kilometers—before entering Enugu State, which did not have less. These checkpoints included a Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), a Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), a navy checkpoint, a mobile police checkpoint, and more.

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From Awka to Enugu, along the expressway that runs for around 50 kilometers, at least 20 checkpoints set up by different security services were found to be operational. Because of this, drivers are essentially glued to the brake pedal.

The issue is made more troubling by the attitude of the security men, even though the high number of checks may be explained by the insecurity in the South-East.

As an example, while returning at the Oji River axis, the reporter encountered heavy traffic at a checkpoint that was manned by mobile police operatives. The heavy traffic persisted even after being cleared, and it was later determined that this was due to traffic from an army checkpoint up ahead, which transferred to another police checkpoint.

Commuters who spoke with GODZGENERALBLOG expressed their daily frustrations with the road.

Mr. Okoro, a public transportation driver whose complaint was shown above, claims that the thing that frustrates him the most is the assurance with which security personnel block highways and then go back to their offices, leaving errand boys to deal with drivers.

As a passenger on Okoro’s bus, Mr. Celestine Ugwunnwa is more worried about the fact that the driver can’t hurry up to make them feel better because he needs to constantly brake between checkpoints, no matter how hot it is.

Sure, there’s fear, but is this really the most effective method of keeping the zone safe? Is it necessary to punish us so severely before we can be brought under control? Take note of how they have obstructing the road. As long as the money from their errand guys keeps coming in, they aren’t going to check them.

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When those lads tell them a driver refused to take money or when they hear a siren, which means a large man is on his way, that’s when they emerge. He bemoaned the situation.

In an interview with GODZGENERALBLOG, an employee from Nnamdi Azikiwe University in Awka said: “You guys who are journalists, you need to report about the hardship we undergo to come to the workplace every day”.

When you travel from Awka to Unizik in Agu Awka, you’ll encounter the Civil Defense, Road Safety, police, and navy officials. It would be prudent for you to inquire about the Navy’s role in our roadways. Those men in the navy who are stationed at Stanel Filling Station were supposed to be security guards, but instead they stand in the middle of the road and demand tolls from passing cars. Is that the best way to ensure safety?

Anambra State Deputy Governor, Dr. Onyekachi Ibezim, was involved in a violent altercation with military forces in December 2022 at a checkpoint in the Anambra town of Amansea, which is adjacent to the Enugu State border.

There was a backlog of cars at the checkpoint, which Ibezim witnessed. The vehicles were filled with vacationers making their way back from all over the world to celebrate Christmas with their families. Without delay, he gave the order to remove the obstructions and clear the road so that traffic could flow freely.

A holiday incident reduced traffic flow, but the roadblock reappeared not long after, and the operatives’ level of brazenness increased.

As the holiday season approaches, there is a widespread belief that the influx of Igbo people returning home for Christmas would lead to an increase in the number of security personnel stationed at checkpoints around the Southeast.

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A number of people, including passenger Celestine Ugwunnwa, are wondering whether the security measures taken so far have been effective in reducing the level of violence in the South East. They also think that there ought to be an alternative to the use of roadblocks, which some view as a form of “policing to punish.”

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