By Debo Adeoye, Ibadan
A paramount and first class traditional ruler in Oyo State, Oba Jimoh Oladunni Oyewumi, Ajagungbade III, the Soun of Ogbomoso has described the new expressway that link Ibadan to Ilorin as an obstacle to the State economic advancement and a deathtrap for motorists.
The monarch, who was represented by one of the palace’s chief, Prince Olawuyi Oyelayo, Mogaji Itabiti of Soun of Ogbomoso and secretary to his Majesty, Mr Toyin Ajamu, registered his displeasure with the way the construction work was being handled by all the parties involved.
He called on the state governor, Engr Seyi Makinde to intervene by way of petitioning the presidency to safe lives and economy of the people concerned.
He made the statement when he received in his palace, the Coalition of Grassroots Volunteers Against Covid-19 (COGVAC-19) team. COGVAC-19 team visited the palace to pay homage and receive royal blessings prior to the commencement of its sensitisation campaign on Covid-19 in Ogbomoso and its environs.
“Our major request from the government is the completion of the expressway linking Ibadan/Oyo/Ogbomoso/Ilorin to each other. The road has claimed many lives and caused great setback for economic development of the state and that of every individual having their businesses along that axis.
“We use this opportunity to appeal to Engr Seyi Makinde to take necessary action to ensure that those handling the construction show great committment towards completion of the expressway and ensure a quality job is done as against substandard job done on Ibadan to Oyo aspect of the road which didn’t last six months before cracking,” the monarch appealed.
“It is sad and very disgusting to say that 21 years had passed since the construction of work started on the expressway and till this very moment it’s still far from completion inspite of the number of lives already lost on this road. It will be a great achievement for Makinde’s administration if he could pressurise the federal government to get the road completed within the shortest possible time,” Oba Oyewumi lamented
In a similar development, Alhaji Amidu Lamidi, a resident of Ogbomoso who granted our correspondent an interview shortly after Soun’s speech, blamed all the federal legislators for their alleged indifference to the deplorable state of the road.
“What are the responsibility of our sons and daughters we gave our votes to, they went to Abuja for selfish interest, neglecting those they claimed to be representing. 21 years after, the major road that link us to the north is still under construction. Meanwhile, we learnt a lot of money had been wasted on it,” Alhaji Lamidi queried.
The Chairmen of all the local government councils and LCDAs in Ogbomoso praised the governor for his efforts towards restoring the lost glory of the pacesetter’s state and his committment to end the spread of Covid-19 in the state.
Speaking on behalf of other Chairmen, Hon.Aderemi Olayinka, the Chairman, Ogbomoso Central said, “We appreciate the good works of our father and leader, the people’s governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde for turning the fortune of the state around for good, working tirelessly to restore the lost glory of the pacesetter’s state and for his committment to halt the spread of Covid-19 without total lockdown of the state,”
“We have also commenced the sensitisation programme in our various local government councils and responses from our people has been very encouraging. But we must not fail to appreciate this special programme brought to us by the Association of Local Government Information Officers (ALGIO). Your programme on Covid-19 is unique, well structured and detailed,” Hon. Olayinka commended.
Other chairmen that joined the campaign train were Hon. Isaiah Adegbite, Chairman, Surulere Local Govt (Iresaadu), Hon. Oluwaseun Ojo, Chairman, Ogo Oluwa, Ladanu village, Hon. M .Gbadamosi Chairman, Surulere South LCDA.