The Isuikwuato-Uturu road constructed during the era of Ike Nwachukwu, the former military governor of Abia State has turned to a deadly route for travellers.
It has also become a source of concern for some business owners along the road as vehicular movements have dwindled, owing to incidents of robbery and banditry.
The road which connects the famous Abia State University, Uturu, passes through many villages in Isuikwuato L.G.A. and terminates at Akoli Imeanyi junction, popularly known as Akara junction in same council area.
But in recent weeks, alleged activities of gunmen suspected to be herdsmen have triggered fear in the minds of those who make use of the road.
Some of the attacks on the roads were unknown to general public, but a villager, Mr. Isaac Nkemakolam said it has become dangerous to travel through the road at night.
Nkemakolam who is a farmer, blamed the ugly situation on the lonely nature of the road, coupled with the dilapidated parts of the Uturu-Isukwuato road, as according to him, vehicles usually slow down when they approach the dilapidated spots, thereby giving the bandits the chance to strike.
He however noted that it was hard to establish the difference between robbery incidents and other forms of attacks on the road, saying it was the duty of security agents to do so.
Nkemakolam called on the Isukwuato Police Division to increase regular patrol along the road to ensure safety of passengers and indigenes.
He stated that it was not only road users that were at danger on the road, but also farmers whose sources of livelihood were being destroyed by rampaging cows belonging to herdsmen.
In the first week of January, 2020, a female traveller, Mrs. Ngozi Jane Olerudah shared her ugly experience in the hands of suspected herdsmen who according to her, attacked the car having her and family members onboard.
According to the victim, the incident took place along Isuikwuato-Uzuakoli road when she was on a journey with her family members.
Mrs. Olerudah showed evidence of her bullet-riddled car, adding that she could not believe that such attack would happen in broad daylight.
She recalled that as the first attacker was shooting at her car, three other men also shot at her from behind but to God’s mercies, the bullets could not hit any occupant even as the car’s body was riddled with bullets.
When the Abia State Commissioner for Homeland Security, Prince Dan Okoli was approached for comment, he was not on desk, but an official of the ministry said such incidents were not yet reported to their office.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) of Abia State Police Command, Mr. Geoffrey Ogbonna did not take calls placed on his telephone line and was yet to reply a message sent to his line as at the time of filing this report.