Residents and motorists in Ijagemo community in Ojo Council of Lagos State have lamented the deplorable state of roads in the area and its attendant hardship on the people.
When The Guardian visited the area recently, from Ijegun Bus Stop down to Ijagemo community, the roads were dotted with wide and deep potholes.
The state of the roads has become a serious challenge for motorists, motorcyclists and residents. Anytime it rains, the road is usually flooded, making them difficult for cars, buses and motorcycles to ply.
Residents complained bitterly that the bad roads were affecting their businesses and livelihood in different ways. A resident of Oyedokun Street, Barakat Ajao, said the lack of proper drainage has caused a lot of chaos and affecting the health and wellbeing of the people.
She said a journey of less than 20 minutes now takes up to an hour or more without alternative routes.
Bunmi Olaniyan said that the road has been in a very bad state since she moved to the community, adding: “From the first day I came here, this road has not been motor- friendly. I came here in 2012 and the road has been like this, very disheartening.
“During both raining and dry seasons, the road is not motorable, but can still be a little bit manageable during the dry season. If motorists are not careful, it can damage their vehicles, but during raining seasons, things get worst, because flood enters houses and spoil people’s properties.”
She also lamented a recent hike in the transport fares due to the bad roads, saying: “If you don’t want to be late for work, you just have to board okada, despite the high fares, because you would not find buses due to fear of getting stuck in the water.”
A motorist operator, Ajagbe Enitan, said “this road has always been a challenge for drivers. As a resident who own a car, at times I don’t go to work with my car. Instead, I take bike. I don’t know exactly what the monarchs in this community are doing about the state of this road. The role of a leader is to ensure the well being of its citizens, but the reverse is the case for them, as they do not care about the welfare of the people.”
A motorist, who craved anonymity, complained that he couldn’t work during raining season due to how back the road becomes at that time. He said: “I don’t work during raining season because it might damage my vehicle, only motorcycles are fortunate enough to work during that time and they increase transport prices.
“Even on a normal day, at times I do repair my vehicle like twice a day because of how bad the road is. I carry passengers from Ijegun to Oju-odo because the road that led inside the main Ijagemo community is worst than this.”
A cloth merchant, Joy Nnamdi, said due to the bad roads, her revenue has dropped, as no one is willing to come to an area that is overrun with potholes.
“My business is running down, why come here to buy when you can buy from other stores with better roads?”
“I have four children to feed, my rent is due and bad road has chased my costumers away,” she said.
Some of the residents of Oju-odo cannot walk on normal ground, but use planks to construct a small bridge down to their doorsteps before they can access their homes.
They appealed to government to fix the roads and make life better for them.