Kayode Fasua in Abeokuta
Youths in Igbesa kingdom, a community in Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State, have applauded the ongoing construction of dilapidated Lusada-Igbesa road by Ogun-Guangdong Free Trade Zone in collaboration with Ogun State Government.
But the youths also called for more of government presence in the area, noting that Igbesa kingdom, which they described as the industrial hub of Ogun State, had been neglected by successive administrations in the state.
Speaking on behalf of the youths in a chat with THISDAY yesterday, the President of Igbesa Youth Assembly, Mr. Babajide Aina, said while the ongoing construction of the 11-kilometre Lusada-Igbesa Road was commendable, there’re also many other roads that connect the kingdom but impassable.
Aina commended the proactive gesture of Governor Dapo Abiodun, but tasked him to monitor the pace of work on the project as well as on other development projects being contemplated for the zone.
Recalling the hardship the locals had had to pass through owing to bad roads, Aina said: “It is unfortunate that where the bulk of the revenue of Ogun State is coming from has no passable roads leading to it, thus frustrating the operations of the companies.
“Firms like Hexing Industries, Brury Industries, Flour Mills Limited, and Viju Milk Industries are all sited in Igbesa under the Guangdong Free Trade Zone. These firms would have thrived more than they are currently doing, but heavy-duty vehicles serving them are often trapped on the bad roads.”
Aina also called for a quick dispensation of justice to facilitate an early installation of a traditional ruler in Igbesa Kingdom, noting that the community has missed many opportunities to attract development, for the fact that it has no traditional ruler.
There has been a lingering tussle over who becomes the monarch of Igbesa in the last two years.
The Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government has issued Prince Abdulazeez Akinde a certificate of selection as the Oloja-Ekun (traditional ruler) of Igbesa Kingdom in March 2017, following his emergence through a communal voting exercise, but his major opponent soon headed to court, obtaining an injunction restraining the state government from installing him.
Complementing Aina’s position, members of Igbesa Community Association in the United Kingdom and Ireland have also called for the prompt resolution of the chieftaincy tussle in the community, noting that it has hindered Igbesa from getting its dues at critical places in government circles.
Speaking with THISDAY on behalf of the group, its leader, Sheik (Dr.) Olushola Dauda, urged Abiodun to through the Ministry of Justice, accelerate the determination of the chieftaincy tussle, so as not to hinder the community’s development any further.
Dauda also lamented that apart from the bad roads, Igbesa has no functioning hospital and that the only community primary school in the kingdom has dilapidated structures.
He thus pleaded with the authorities to declare a state of emergency in Igbesa in terms of provision of good roads and other social amenities.