By GBEMISOLA IBRAHIM
Have you ever been in a Keke (tricycle) that is continuously galloping back and forth in potholes and when you finally alight, you are plagued with pounding headaches and body aches? Or ever waited for like forever right under the scorching sun with so much dust around just to get a Keke to convey you to your class? You know how that feels, right? Day in day out, this is the experience of an average student in the College of Health Sciences, University of Ilorin.
The transportation condition in college has been a major issue of concern that is in dire need of attention. A number of accident cases have been reported due to the poor state of the road which constantly puts the lives of students in danger. The road network here has undergone several patching exercises that it must be tired and ageing at this point. Come rain, these roads are washed into a deplorable state with water everywhere. Various potholes are constantly transitioning into trenches and coupled with the poor drainage system and poor compaction during patching, it is only a matter of time before the road segregates and fails completely.
The havoc wrecked during the rainy season makes travelling on the college road a risky affair. Students commuting to and fro classes have to hold the Keke rails for dear lives not to mention the muddy water that eventually turns a corporately dressed student into someone who has toiled the rice farm the entire day.
In addition to the hindering problem of bad road is the worrisome scarcity of Keke, another issue of concern. The number of Keke available at any time is insufficient to cater to the entire student populace in this part of the school where there are four strategic areas to shuttle between; say, old college, new college, school park/gate (UITH) and the main campus (permanent site).
Sad to say that these shuttling is met with scarcity of Keke and this leaves students standing outside for long before they get a chance to commence their bumpy ride. In cases of emergencies, say, on exam/test days or when the clinic visit is necessary, students have the options of waiting, begging for rides which are often turned down or taking the alternative route (Sango-Challenge-Post-Office axis) which of course is time consuming and more expensive.
The scarcity of Keke owes to a number of reasons which includes the unwillingness of riders to ply the college road for fear of incurring damage to their tricycle.
It is imperative that these factors affecting the transportation service in the College of Health Sciences are attended to immediately in order to ensure that lives of students are not lost along these bumpy roads, transport for students is eased and emergencies are attended to, as these are important for student welfarism.