Residents of Apapa/Iganmu Area of Lagos State have begged Governor Akinwunmi Ambode to release the compensation for their buildings and shops that were demolished for road construction projects in the area.
The residents made the request at the secretariat of Apapa/Iganmu LCDA during the Lagos State House of Assembly sponsored Constituency Stakeholders’ Meeting, which was held across the 40 constituencies in the state.
They also requested that the 57 Local Governments (LGs) and Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) across the state should consider re-absorbing some street sweepers that were sacked by the councils a few months ago.
One of the speakers at the event, Alhaja R.A Bello from Abese Area in Ward B, said that the government had not done anything for owners of houses that were demolished in places such as Daramola Street, Odofin and Ojora areas.
She however, threatened that the women in the area would not vote in the next election in the state if the street sweepers were not re-absorbed by the council.
Another resident of the area, Prince Kayode Obadiya, urged the state government to urgently do something about Badiya/Ireti Primary School, which has become dilapidated.
“There are toilets, but there is no water. The road to the school is bad. The two roads that were recently commissioned in Apapa/Iganmu have also gone bad so is the inter-locked road in Opeloyeru,” he said.
In his reaction, the lawmaker representing Apapa Constituency 2 in the assembly, Honourable Olumuyiwa Jimoh, said compensation for those whose houses were demolished for road construction projects by the state government was ready.
According to him, the initial issue was that those that came forward for compensation were more than the 381 houses that were demolished by government for road expansion in the area.
“Compensation has been prepared by the governor, but some tenants were coming forward to claim compensation as if they were landlords, while some people, whose houses were just about two or three rooms were claiming money that is to be given to owners of big buildings,” he said.
The lawmaker,who is the Deputy Majority Leader also educated the people about the categories of roads in the state, saying that some roads that belong to the local governments were being repaired or constructed by the state government.
On the sack of street sweepers by the local councils, he said that this was caused by the prevailing economic recession in the country, adding that this has affected the income of both states and local governments in Nigeria.
“We have to wait till the local councils are bouyant again. If they should absorb the sweepers now, they may not be able to pay their salaries,” he said.
The lawmaker promised that erring road contractors would no longer be given jobs by the state government and that the issue of state police, which some of the stakeholders canvassed for, was beyond the state government.
He added that the assembly passed the Neighbourhood Watch Law to serve as an alternative to state police, which, he said, required a tedious constitutional amendment.
According to him, the purpose of the meeting wa to carry residents along in the state’s budget preparation as he said that some of their requests would form part of the 2017 budget of the state.
He promised to submit the outcome of the meeting to the government on their behalf.