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A cemetery in paradise

11 July 2012, 12:10

One would hope that after getting to Abuja, the next fascinating place to visit would be Gwarinpa Estate being the largest estate vis-à-vis the largest living quarters within the Abuja metropolis.

Quite true to the fact is that every one, the 'well-to-do's' and the 'do not well's' all converge here seeking to establish a niche of their own within this vast area of habitation designed by our loveable government.

I have made a detour of this renowned estate and have come to the understanding that it was designed to suite the lifestyle of the residents within Abuja who choose to retire to a serene environment after a tiring day's work.

I never really took time to look at the Abuja master-plan which has influenced the design of the Gwarinpa Estate and its environments, until recently while taking a walk through 1st avenue to turn into 3rd avenue, right at the junction by the left side of 1st avenue, I discovered an ongoing development at the site where I had purported would be a Relaxation and Resort Centre.

At an instance, my spirit came alive. “Wow,” I exclaimed. This was the best thing Gwarinpa Estate could have, only a perfect master-plan could have foreseen a perfect location for a Relaxation and Resort Centre. Gwarinpa Park. My dream, our dream just materialized.

After walking few meters while observing the construction, the next thing I saw threw my sweet imagination into a tantrum.

Guess what I saw….?

An inscription which read …'Gwarinpa' was there quite alright, but the next word was like a curse. 'Cemetery'. Jesus Christ of Nigeria. What madness. What balderdash. What… ?

I couldn’t believe what I saw. So I had to call a passer-by and asked him: "Please help me look at the inscription on this gate?"

After all, I just knew that the masterplan builders must have been drinking 'Kunu' when they designated that plot for a cemetery.

Turning to the right-hand side of the road, I saw churches conjugated at their different spots just across the road. Are you thinking what I'm thinking?

Just imagine. So Church represents life. All those who seek life run to the church to get infused with the divine life of Christ. Cemeteries represent death. The irony of a beautifully designed and well-structured place for dead people with no hopes for anything. Dead future. Dead destinies buried in forever. And these two extremes have been made to face each other!

Besides, who knows? With dead bodies close to the roads and the spate of accidents at that junction, how many people would really enjoy walking through that avenue at night?

There’s a lot more I could deduce from this ill-fated structure, but at this juncture, I’d like to make a clarion call to those concerned. Please lets remove that burial ground from where it is currently located, it is unbefitting!

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