Residents of Sango Ota, Ogun State, have decried the neglect of the sprawling metropolis by successive administrations in the state.
Many communities in the area are reeling from the effects of floods and erosion. The worst hit areas are Iyanru, Ali Isiba, Igbala, Temidire, Osi Quarters, Ilo Awela, Oju Ore and Alasia Araromi.
Others are Arije, Ijako Owode, Igi Agbede, Owotutu, Orija, Gas Line and Arigbabu.
They said each time the clouds gather, they would pray that it does not rain because of the disaster that it would cause in the areas.
They contended that the environmental problems being experienced in their communities would not have been so severe if there were drainages along the major roads.
A landlord, Chief Kayode Odunsi, said the major cause of floods and erosion in the metropolis was absence of drainage channels and failed roads.
Odunsi said, “There are no functional drains in Sango Ota. The available drainage channels in pockets of places are incapable of holding floodwaters.
“Our major road to Lagos, Ilo Awela, has been destroyed for more than five years. The road has a small drainage channel which has been taken over by weeds and all sorts of dirt. The implication is that floods that flow from Ifo discharge into our area and wreak havoc there.”
He said when Governor Ibikunle Amosun visited the area about two months ago, he told them that the contract for Ilo Awela Road had been awarded, but they had yet to see any contractor on the road.
A resident, Sikiru Sanusi, said floods had been dealing a devastating blow to them each time rain fell.
“We are being treated as if we do not have government in this state. This is where the government derives a lot of money from. Yet, nobody cares if we exist or not. Our communities are suffering from serious neglect from the authorities,” Sanusi said.
Another resident, Yusuf Olaleye, said the situation in their area was like the tale of the goose that laid the golden eggs.
He explained that the government was only interested in the eggs and not the goose.
When PUNCH Metro visited some of the affected areas, it was observed that many roads in the metropolis were dilapidated and lacked drains.
Some buildings had been blown off while those of some of the houses had caved in.
The home of Senator Akin Odunsi, the senator representing the district on Amodu Giwa Street had also been affected by floods.
Worried by the situation, Odunsi appealed to Amosun to come to the aid of his people.
He urged the government to urgently reconstruct the Ilo Awela Road, saying until the road is rehabilitated, the environmental problems in the area would not abate.
Odunsi said, “Sometimes in the past when the rains washed away some of the houses and caused untold hardship for the people because the drainage channels and canals were blocked and therefore incapable of evacuating the kind of storm water they were experiencing.
“The immediate past state government expanded some roads and attempted to build drainages through the interventionist Ogun State Maintenance Agency but the project was never completed.
“Soon after the government won a second term, the men disappeared with the materials. Since then, nothing has been done. Our people protested but were ignored.”
He urged the government to dredge canals and make the roads passable and periodically evacuate the debris blocking the canals.