The residents of Ajao Estate in the Isolo Local Council Development Area of Lagos State have cried out to the Lagos state government over the hardship they experience daily due to the appalling state of roads in the community.
The residents complained that the state of the roads riddled with potholes causes gridlock that lasts several hours on end with government intervention non-existent despite repeated appeals to the authorities.
It was garnered by our source who visited the area that link roads within the community such as Stella Sholanke, Okada Park, Adekunle Akala and Cobham amongst others are in a moribund state with some of the residents collaborating towards fixing them to a barely-motorable state.
Cyril Ejikeme who has been a resident in Isolo for over 20 years said the government needs to complement the efforts of the residents by effecting wide-scale repair of all the roads in the community.
He said, “I feel it is high time we the residents addressed the issues affecting us to the appropriate authorities.
“The state of roads in Ajao Estate is horrible; we don’t have proper drainage channels and most of our roads are very bad, and the cost of maintaining a car in this environment is alarming.
“I must confess that for quite a long time, we have not felt the presence of the government in this estate.
“In fact, it appears like the government has ignored us, some residents and business owners have used their hard earned money to fix some of the roads so that they can be manageable.
“But, there is a limit to what they can do, which is why the government is needed.”
A tricycle operator in the area, Thankgod Ojijieme, also complained about the correlation between the bad state of the roads in Isolo and the slow pace of business especially during peak hours which are occasioned by heavy gridlock.
He continued, “The roads in Ajao Estate are an eyesore and for years, we have been going through hell.
“The government is behaving as if it is not aware that the bad state of the roads is responsible for the gridlock we experience daily while plying the estate’s roads.
“The gridlock starts from 6.30am and ends around noon, but later resurfaces around 5 pm.
“These periods are supposed to be our peak periods, but the gridlock is seriously affecting our income.
“More so, motorcycles have been banned in Ajao Estate, so the tricycle is the major mode of transportation and I must confess that the tricycle operators and commuters are not finding it easy.
“Once it is evening, commuters will be in long queues from the park to the main road, because the tricycles that have taken people into the estate will be hooked in the gridlock caused by the bad roads.
“We want the authorities to come to our rescue.”
Ruben Babatunde who also lives in Isolo said the residents won’t be deceived by empty promises during the runup to the 2019 elections due to the nonchalance of the Ambode’s administration to their plight.
He said, “Series of letters had been written to the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure, Alausa, in respect of these roads, but nothing has been done.
“Initially, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode had promised to fix the bad roads in Lagos State in batches, but Ajao Estate did not benefit from the roads he fixed during the first two years of his administration and the estate was not among those enlisted during the second phase of the road construction project executed by the government.
“I can assure you that gone is the era whereby a politician will come to cajole us in the name of providing certain infrastructure.
“The level of awareness and voter exposure is high now and residents have made up their minds on who to vote for.
“So, it goes beyond any politician coming to us with empty promises, because we know their way and we have known those making promises that are not fulfilled.
“So, no politician can take advantage of the current challenges to brainwash us. It will not work.”
In a reaction to the report by our source, the Deputy Director, Public Affairs, Ministry of Works and Infrastructure, Lagos State, Sina Thorpe, said the state government is aware of the state of the roads and it will ensure to keep its electoral promises adding that five roads had already been repaired within the community.
Thorpe said, “I am aware that the state government has carried out rehabilitation of about five roads in Ajao Estate in the life of this administration.
“So, it is far from the truth that the Lagos State Government has not done anything in that area.
“We have done some roads there and the state government will do more in the future. But we cannot build the entire roads in one area at the expense of the other areas.”
He also added that a lack of funds also contributes to why the government has not been able to rehabilitate all the roads in the state concurrently which means it picks specific roads to be rehabilitated in various local governments within a particular time frame.