June 17, 2009

Nosamu residents up in arms with LG over night market

By Evelyn Usman

Nosamu Street, in the densely populated Ajegunle area of Lagos, is one of the strategically located commercial streets around the area, as it directly faces the popular Alayabiagba market and other business districts in the area.  However, in spite this commercial edge over other streets, residents of the area are currently gripped with trepidation owing to criminal tendencies associated with such busy area.

Nosamu street in the densely populated Ajegunle of Lagos.

Nosamu street in the densely populated Ajegunle of Lagos.

About two years ago, the residents came under the siege of robbers and also suffered the inconveniences associated with the street-turned garage, no thanks to the commercial vehicles which were parked  along the narrow street and thus served as a haven for criminal activities. It, however, took the vehement refusal and resultant protest against the use of the street as garage by residents  before the commercial vehicles were evacuated .

Today, residents of the area are again faced with one of the biggest challenges of the moment, following the decision of the Ajeromi Ifelodun Local Government to create a night market in street, a decision they resent with an undescribable passion .

Moves by the local government seem to be in top gear as a sign board with the inscription: “Ajeromi Ifelodun Local Government Nosamu Night Market” has already been mounted at the edge of the street.

Aggrieved by this decision, the residents who described such move as not only an unjust imposition  but one which  counters  the state government’s avowed decision to make Lagos State a mega city,  petitioned  Governor Babatunde Fashola and appealed to him  to come to their aid.

A copy of the petition which was made available to Vanguard Metro reads thus: “We the entire residents of Nosamu Street in Ajegunle, are not happy with the way and manner the Ajeromi local government is treating us.

Some few years ago, the local government came up with the issue of turning Nosamu into a garage, saying it was for a temporary moment. But that lasted for more than seven years and even caused some of the residents their lives and properties as criminals hijacked  the opportunity.

“Today, the local government has again, come up with the decision to commence a night market  in the street, in order to accommodate those traders who were evacuated from the road.

“ To put the record straight, the street which is narrow and already congested is opposite the popular Boundary Market.  There is enough space to accommodate the displaced traders inside the market. Most shops inside Boundary Market  are empty and as such can be rented out to the traders where customers can go and patronise them.

“Our understanding about the creation of a  night market is based on the fact that there is no market around such area . But in this case there are about five markets around this area, namely: Cemetery market, Alayabiagba market, New Road Market , Tolu Market and Iyalode Small Market.

Most of these markets mentioned have been abandoned. Why not relocate the traders there and not to a street, which road is very narrow. Roads are made for  easy access to and fro and should not be used as market. The consequence of creating a night market will not only cause an environmental hazard but will also heighten tension associated with insecurity.

“Residents of Nosamu community have suffered untold punishment from the local government both in the past and present . When the road was in a poor condition, it was abandoned for several years without response from the local government. It look the effort of the immediate past governor, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to put it in good condition.

“Nosamu  is the only alternative route to Baale Street and if the  road is blocked, everyone using Nosamu as the only exit to connect other major parts in Lagos will be stranded and this will  contribute to the worsening  traffic jam around the area. It is for  this and other reasons, that the community outrightly condemns and rejects activities of the local government to impose a night market on us”.

When Vanguard Metro visited the Ajeromi Ifelodun Local Government last Wednesday to get the chairman, Mr Kamal  Bayewu ’s reaction, he was not in the office. Coincidentally the residents were also billed to meet with the chairman on same day . But unfortunately the meeting did not hold, leaving the dejected residents with no other option than to retire to their respective homes.


CDAs charged to monitor Lagos council’s projects

For local governments in Nigeria to render qualitative services to the people at the grassroots, community Development Associations must endeavour to monitor various projects embarked upon by the councils. This was the position of Mr. Kehinde Bamigbetan, the Chairman of Ejigbo Local Council Development Area  during an interactive forum between him and the Fourty-five  CDA’S in the council area at the weekend.

The interactive forum which was called at the behest of Mr. Bamigbetan, gave him the opportunity to stress the importance of payment of tenement rates owed the council by residents, saying the CDAs, being an integral part of the community, are expected to sensitise the people to pay their tenement rates.

Mr. Bamigbetan, who was the Chief Press Secretary to the immediate past Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, informed members of the CDAs, who attended the forum that, as representatives of the grassroots people, they have the power to monitor and supervise various projects embarked upon by local governments, with a view to ensuring that the projects are executed in accordance with required standard. The council boss said this has become necessary in view of the fact that the local governments are executing the projects with tax payers’ money, and as such, they have every right to monitor how the money is spent.

In the same vain, Mr. Bamigbetan informed the CDAs that the fund his government receives from both state and federal governments is not enough to transform Ejigbo, and as a result, it is important that residents of the council pay all their rates, most importantly, tenement rates as at when due, to enable his administration fulfill all its electoral promises.

Amuwo odofin begins roads construction, completes link bridge
THE Executive Chairman of Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area, Comrade Ayodele Adewale has unfolded plans by his council to pursue the Millennium Development Goals for the benefit of people in the area. Addressing stakeholders in the local government he expressed the readiness of his administration to reconstruct the badly damaged roads in Amuwo Odofin.

At the forum, the council boss stated that the multi-million naira project has been approved by the state government.According to a release signed by Comrade Kola Folorunso, the Chief Press Secretary to the council boss, the Local Government has concluded arrangements on massive construction of roads in the area.

“Any moment from now, the engineers on site will commence work in the area. Some of the areas earmarked for construction are Circular Road in Mile 2, Durban Road in Mile 2, 3rd Avenue, 21 Road, 4th Avenue, 2nd Avenue and 7th Avenue in Festac Town,” he informed.

Similarly, the local government is said to have completed the construction of 402/ 6th Avenue canal link bridge in Festac Town which, according to reports, claimed a life early last year as a result of the attack on the bridge by some hoodlums.