By Collins Yakubu-Hammer
Residents of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on Sunday came out in large number to have fun at the various recreation parks in Abuja to celebrate the Easter.
At the Monaliza Amusement Park located at Garki, Area 11, hundreds of fun seekers took over the park.
Mr Ifeanyi Chukuma, a businessman, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that he was in the park with his family to celebrate the Easter.
“Staying at home during celebration is not fun, that is why I came here with my wife and two kids to have a nice time.
“I know it is not easy, but since God has blessed me to see this Easter, I will celebrate with my family, family is everything,” Chukwuma said.
Similarly, Hajiya Bilkisu Abubakar, a house wife, said she came to the park with her four children.
She told NAN that even though she is a Muslim as a Nigerian she would celebrate with Christians.
“Celebration is celebration; I am here in the spirit of Easter Sunday to celebrate with my Christian brothers and sisters.
“You can see how everybody is happy and enjoying themselves in the park. I am also here with my children to have fun,” Abubakar said.
The manager of the park, Mr Ibrahim Abubakar, said that patronage was encouraging.
“We thank God for the people coming to the park. Patronage was higher in 2016’s Easter celebration than this year.
“However, we thank God, people are patronising; our equipment are in good shape; as the celebration continues, I beleieve patronage will improve,”Abubakar said.
It was not different experience at the Millennium Park in Maitama as fun seekers, in their thousands, visited the park to celebrate Easter.
Mr Silas Kigbu, a civil servant, who was in the company of his wife, Asheze and three children said, “this is an opportunity to be with my family and have quality time together.
“I am not the only one, you can see so many people having nice time here; it is wonderful, God be the glory.”
Mrs Elizabeth Akolo, a food vendor said that Easter is the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
She explained that it was necessary to celebrate, but that the reason for the season should not be forgotten.
“Jesus Christ died for us to be saved; we also need to help and sacrifice for each other, especially those who are suffering.
“We should always look around our communities and help the less privilege because, Christ have paid for our sins and we should extend that kindness to others.
“I know it is not a good time for most Nigerians, but we can give even out of the little we have to those that don’t have at all.
”Let us extend the love of Christ by being our brothers’ and sisters’ keeper; Easter is all about love and sacrifice,” Akolo stressed.
Mrs Funmilayo Adebayo who sell snacks at the gate of the park said patronage was high.
Adebayo said she had made large sells and was grateful to fun seekers who bought from her.
“Market today is good, I have sold a lot today that is Easter Sunday; a lot of people came to the parks; my snacks finished, I had to order for more.
“I wish it will continue like this; I thank God for everything,” she said.
Similarly, Malam Zubiru Sanusi who sells roast meat popularly known as ‘Suya’ said patronage was high.
He said a lot of people visited the park unlike the previous Easter celebrations.
“Many people are happy for the Easter and are buying from me; I thank Almighty Allah for the sale today.”
Mr Felix Adetayo the Chief Executive Officer of ‘Youth on Fire for Christ’, a talent hunt organisation, said he was in the park to discover talents and help youths achieve their dreams.
Adetayo organised dancing and singing completion in the park where youths were seen dancing and singing.
He said, “This is youth on Fire for Christ, a place of transformation; it is an interdenominational youth organisation.
“Our basic mission is to create a platform where youths can showcase their gifts and talents.
“Most youths are talented but have no platform to up their game, that is why we are here to bridge the gap.
“We will also provide platform for them to excel in the God given talent,” Adetayo said.
Meanwhile, five people were arrested by the police in the park for allegedly being in possession of substance suspected to be Indian hemp.
NAN reports that the suspects were later taken to Maitama police station for interrogation (NAN)