Traders and workers in the commercial city of Onitsha have lamented the locking up of the Niger Bridgehead by Anambra State governor, Willie Obiano to stop the influx of people into the state.
Obiano had last weekend constructed a gate at the Niger Bridgehead, which is the gateway into the South East from the western part of the country, and some parts of the north.
Traders in the city who spoke to BOOMNAIJA MEDIA MEN that the locking up of the Niger Bridgehead will affect their businesses, the same way it will also affect workers in the city who come to work from Asaba, the Delta State capital.
Our correspondent gathered that most of the traders and workers in the commercial city of Onitsha live in Asaba while carrying out their businesses in the town.
A trader, Mr. Ugochukwu Eke, who spoke to BOOMNAIJA MEDIA during a visit to the city on Monday said,
“I live in Asaba, and my business is in Onitsha.
“With the locking up of the Niger Bridgehead, how will I be able to come to Onitsha every morning to carry out my business. Many of the people you see who have businesses in various markets in Onitsha actually live in Asaba.
“We thought it was just for the curfew, but you can see it’s day time now and the gate is still locked. The ideal thing to do is to open the gate at the stipulated time and let people come in and do their businesses and before 8pm when the curfew starts they can lock it again.”
Asked if he realized that crossing the bridge from Asaba into Onitsha violates the ban on interstate travel, Eke said Asaba and Onitsha have become almost synonymous, and can not be differentiated as different states, even though they are.
BOOMNAIJA MEDIA, however, discovered that despite the gate on the main road of the bridge coming into Anambra, the pedestrian section was also locked, blocking off pedestrians who trek into the state daily from doing so.
A security operative, who did not want his name in print said they receive instructions as to what time of the day to open the gate. He, however, refused to state if the timing is the same on a daily basis.
Attempts to speak to the Commissioner for Transport in Anambra State, Dr. Christian Madubuko on the time allocated for the opening of the highway was not successful as he did not respond to calls to his mobile phone.