By: Eldred Wlemongar Thomas/GNN Senior Reporter
Report from northern and southeastern Liberia speaks of extreme difficulties being encountered by travelers in that part of the Country due to the deplorable roads condition, a situation which report said have hampered the trade of goods and services.
Our reporter who just returned from Lofa County said dozens of travelers and their vehicles have been stuck in huge mud and finding it difficult to pull them out due to the lack of jack trucks and other equipments.
Our reporter quoting residents in the affected areas, especially the road from Zorzor to Gbarnga, Bong County said dozens of stranded travelers spent most nights in hard forests due to this situation, noting, “If nothing is done by the central government to help in coming to our rescue, I am afraid we will not vote any one in office come 2017. We have always been victims of such situation, this should serve as a warning to all politicians,” one of the stranded travelers in a chat with our reporter stressed.
Our reporter further said due to the deplorable condition of these roads in rural Liberia, prices are been hiked on transportation, gasoline, fuel and other basis communities, noting, “This situation has created a serious economic hardship on us”.
He said gasoline is now been sold for 475 Liberian dollars, the 25kg bag of rice is 2,100 LD, while 3,000LD is now charged on motorbike riders from Gbarnga to Vionjama.
Lofa County normally referred to as the bread basket of Liberia because of the huge quantity of agricultural produce, is not becoming disconnected.
Our reporter said commercial vehicles are hardly venturing leaving travellers to sue NGO vehicles.
Farm produce like groundnuts okra, butterball pepper and others edible food items are getting rotten by the road side where market people spend sleepless nights due to breakdown of the vehicles in the mud.
People mainly marketers are now spending more than four days from Gbarnga to Vionjama, the capital of Lofa, our reporter noted.
According to our reporter, groups from several communities have hired pickups and are mobilizing citizens to gather crush rocks to help the situation by filling roads.
Four wheel vehicles including that of government, commercial, NGO, banks and others are all getting stock in the mud.
When contacted via mobile phone, about the road condition, Lofa Superintendent George Dunor confirmed the situation and expressed fear that if nothing is done swiftly, the state of roads could become more deplorable as the rain continuous.
Superintendent Dunor said worrisome and as such the local county authorities have convened a well-attended meeting youth, women and Liberia Marketing Association, Lofa county branch on the way forward.
The Lofa Superintendent said although the Ministry of Public Works Resident Engineer was not present, they discussed ways to help address the worsening state of roads in the county.
Superintendent Dunor said while they await word for the Public Works resident engineer in the county, the citizens have agreed to buttress the self-help initiative already started by transporting crush rocks from the Ebola Treatment Unit to badly affected areas on the road.
“I must highly commend my citizens and others for the level of cooperation and support as we strategise to help address the road problem, Superintendent concluded“.