Editor’s note: In every political dispensation, the electorate, especially people at the grassroots would like to enjoy dividends of democracy to the fullest. But in most cases, their expectation is far from being met by their representatives due to many reasons that could only be explained by the politicians.
In this article sent to NAIJ.com, a Lagos-based journalist and social commentator, Alade Tasma, writes about the plight of a community in Lagos state which according to him has not experienced government presence in the last few years.
Gloryland, a community of over 10,000 populations located at Isheri-Olofin of Egbe-Idimu Local Council Development Authority LCDA, Lagos state South-west, Nigeria could be said to be a state within Lagos state going by the fact that residents of this community have neither experience government presence or benefited from its social responsibilities despite several appeals to successive administrations in the state.
Every visible infrastructures project in the community was put in place via communal efforts and individual commitments. The residents expressed displeasure on what they described as deliberate neglect of the community by the Lagos state government.
Speaking to journalists recently at the venue of the Community Development Association CDA election, the outgoing chairman of the Gloryland CDA, Mr. Olumide Adewale lamented the Lagos state government neglect of the community.
According to him, "We have made several appeals to governments at the two levels in the State but they never bother about the community but they comes into the community for all leviable taxes and rates which of course, we pay.
“Both State and local government come here to collect taxes and rates from residents, yet, we never felt their presence in any area of social responsibilities even after several appeals through correspondences and visits."
"Go round the community, all the drainages, motorable roads, electric transformers, water supplies were provided by residents of the community without any government input, yet, we fulfilled our obligatory responsibilities in terms of payment of taxes and rates to governments both at State and local government levels."
"Erosion has become a major challenge to us in this area, our roads have been washed away several times by erosion, these are the roads we graded and made motorable for our use and were been washed away.
"If not for the community efforts which put up palliative measure to put the erosion in check, maybe we would have recorded a major disaster in the community when we would have been washed away by erosion and then generate global attention, I'm sure by then the Lagos State government will come and do something to save those that will remain, " Adewale lamented.
Gloryland community which comprises 270 streets according to an elderly resident has a major road that linked the community to other parts of the state:
"We have been calling on the State government to help fix this major road which is called "Community road" this is the only road that connects all the 270 Streets in the community and links them to other parts of the state.
Unfortunately, the State government has refused to come to our aid and has left us to continue to suffer as if we are not part of the State or not even human beings. You need to see what residents go through on this roads, especially when it rains yet, the importance of this road even for commercial activities cannot be undermine.
"Do you know this particular road will safe people of Baruwa, Jakande, Gowon Estate and environs the stress of going to Egbeda before connecting Lasu-Iba road to Badagry and other areas in that axis.
"This road, if attended to and make functional, it will decongest traffic along Egbeda-Idimu road and if truly open up links roads remain the priority of Ambode's administration, then, this community road should no longer be ignored.
"Do you know with the population of well over 10,000 the community and the entire Isheri-Olofin can boast of only one public primary school thereby subjecting the little children to avoidable hardship on daily basis? The community has just committed another N5m in January this year to prepare for the rains because of the bad roads within the community," the elderly resident stated.
Speaking after the election and his victory, the newly elected chairman of the CDA, Barrister Okwy Ejezie promised to continue to appeal and pressurize both the State and local governments to come to the aid of the community in the areas of it's need, especially that of erosion that is threatening the entire community.
"We have been fulfilling our obligatory to the governments at all levels, they should in turn reciprocate by coming to our aids in area of needs, and we shall continue to demand for this, not by confrontations or condemnations but by persuasions and appeals.
“The residents have been trying their best doing what ordinarily what the government should have been doing for them but we are and shall remain progressive partners to government at all levels," Ejezie stated while assuring residents of the community that with the coming on board of the new executive under his leadership a new dawn has just began in the community.
The newly elected executive members include, the Vice chairman, Andrew Osaghe, Secretary, Humph Olanrewaju, Treasurer, Wale Abioye, Social Secretary, Collins Obasi, Financial Secretary, Samson Ogundare and the PRO, Olusola Fashina.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the editorial policy of NAIJ.com.
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