Akin Olukiran, a Nigerian based in the United Kingdom in the last three decades could not have captured it better. If you want to gauge the trepidation with which Nigerian travellers now embark on their journeys, make a trip to the train station in Abuja and listen to conversations as travellers spends hours ‘warring’ to buy tickets to board train to go to Kaduna from Abuja or vice versa.
As a man who had stayed all his youthful life in the Diapora, used to the efficient train system in the UK, Olukiran could not have been more agast when last week he bumped on hundreds of passengers who had come to see the train as the only option for them.
“Forget about the roads!” Many of them said. “That is like walking yourself into death,” they went ahead.
But why? Olukiran was tempted to ask. The Abuja/Kaduna road has become an obvious death zone with more than 80% of danger while commuting on it.
On Monday, those who have made that route hellish proved they are good at what they do when they held hundreds of travellers hostage. At the end of the day, not only were scores unaccounted for, the Chairman of the State Universal Basic Education Board boss in Kaduna state and his daughter and their driver had become victims. While the boss and his daughter were kidnapped, they wasted the life of the driver in a desperate attempt to force them to a stop.