Iyana-Isolo under bridge, off Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, still abandoned for more than a year now. PHOTO: FEMI IBIROGBA
Road users around Iyana-Isolo area of Lagos State have called on the state and local governments to repair a bad spot that has been left to deteriorate for more than two years before more lives will be lost to the dreaded spot.
The damaged portion of the road started as a small pothole after the NIPOST office, beside the end of the bridge that connects Mushin with Isolo, but after months of neglect, it has turned to wider and deeper crater and has claimed some lives.
In December 2018, a passenger on a motorcycle was not so lucky at the ditch when a truck went into the gully, got stuck and while trying to force its way out, rolled back and hit an okada rider coming behind. Though the rider was severely injured, the passenger died on the spot.
That particular spot, a road user, Poopola Ayobami, had, shortly after the incident, told The Guardian: “This road has been abandoned for more than a year. Immediately after the death of the okada rider, the road was cordoned off and motorists were diverted to use the other lane. But after experiencing terrible congestion, especially during peak periods, motorists found a way to maneuver around the ditch. That, too, is another disaster waiting to happen.”
Almost two years after, nothing has changed on the road. In fact, on August 15, 2020, the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) rallied to clear a 40ft container at the spot using its forklift, nicknamed Goliath, after the container fell off the truck. Thankfully, it landed without any fatality.
A tricycle operator, who simply identified himself as Saheed, said the dilapidated road has been a major concern for commercial drivers plying Iyana-Isolo, Isolo/NNPC-Gate route as they risk accident while passing through the portion of the road, adding that the dilapidated road has made their tricycles to suffer mechanical damage.
He said: “We appeal to the government to help us repair this road before it gets worse than this. We spend so much repairing our tricycles weekly. When rain falls, this place becomes impassable because it is hard to wade through the gully without getting drown. We hope something can be done as a matter of urgency after two years. During peak periods, this portion causes heavy congestion as well.”
Another road user, Seun Lawal, wants the state government to permanently fix the road, saying, “In the past, attempts have been made to offer some palliatives by pouring stone and sand to fill up the pothole, but it doesn’t last a few weeks before the rains wash them away.
“I pity motorists who are not regular users of the road; they tend to underestimate the depth of the pothole and on entering it, it causes serious damage to their vehicle chassis. The government should wait for more lives to be lost before something is done to fix the road.”