-Say construction ‘terribly’ slow, appeal to govt. for speedy work
Youths in Igbogbo have made a passionate appeal to the Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo – Olu, to pay residents of Igbogbo whose houses were demolished about three years ago.
The leadership of the Igbogbo Youths Coalition (IYC) and Vanguard Group made this appeal during a chat with THE IMPACT in Igbogbo.
The youth groups also called for speedy work by the construction company handling the reconstruction of Ipakodo – Igbogbo – Igbe – Gintin road.
Mr Gbenga Oduniyi, President, IYC and Mr Faniyi Olaiga Tolulope, President, Vanguard Group, during the chat asked the government to compensate affected residents who sacrificed their houses for the road construction.
The youth leaders, while acknowledging that some of the demolition victims were paid by the immediate past administration led by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, said that a large percentage of those affected are yet to receive compensation and resettle.
Oduniyi, IYC President, said that the entire residents supported the reconstruction of the road initiated by Governor Ambode’s administration to facilitate development by opening up the community.
He said that residents also supported the idea of changing the narrative that Igbogbo people don’t welcome developments and are not welcoming people.
”When the project came, all and sundry in the community, including youths, welcomed it because of development. In actual fact, residents have been yearning for a good road to connect Igbogbo to other communities in the Division”, he said
“This, we believe, will make Igbogbo community more accessible and open up its economy and that of Igbogbo/Bayeku LCDA at large.
“Residents agreed to the demolition of their homes to change the wrong perception that Igbogbo don’t welcome development. We actually want to change that which accounted for the support we gave the government and allowing them to claim the right of way. We are always welcoming new ideas and we are accommodating too”, IYC President said.
He, however, expressed disappointment that three years after the demolition, there is yet to be any tangible work done on the road by the contractor handling the construction and that the victims of the demolition are also not allowed to resettle themselves because compensation is yet to be paid to them.
“Three years after the demolition, we are disappointed that there has been no compensation from the government which would have made those whose houses were demolished resettle themselves and feel that they have sacrificed for a worthy cause. Unfortunately, nothing has been done in this regard”, he said while expressing his disappointment.
“People allowed their ancestral homes to be demolished for development, but here we are three years after, nothing has been done in terms of road construction and payment of compensation to victims.
“Although, contractor is on site, but that is not enough. We want to see physical construction going; we want to see them working thoroughly and not all these patching jobs that they have been doing. We don’t want that”, he said while asking the government to ensure that HiTech speed up work on the reconstruction of the road.
“More importantly, the government should, as a matter of urgency, compensate those that have allowed their houses to be demolished so that they can properly resettle themselves. These people have forgone their heritage for development and they need to be compensated”, he pleaded.
“As a youth body, we are very serious about this. We want it to be a priority on the government’s list. Government should source for fund by all means and pay them. Going around the community, the song everybody is singing now is, ‘Pay us our compensation”, he added
“That is our position. We want the government to pay members of the community affected by the demolition and we want the contractor to be fully on ground and not partially.
Also reacting, Mr Faniyi, the President of the newly berthed political group, Vanguard Group, also described the work being done by HiTech as slow while adding that his group has decided to take up the task of ensuring that work progresses on the project and not abandoned.
“The rate of work that is being done by HiTech is very slow. As a matter of fact, that is part of the first task that we are taken up as a group”, he revealed to THE IMPACT.
“The rate at which the construction company is working is terribly very slow. The demolition was done about three years ago but up till now, no tangible construction has been done. It is very disheartening”.
He said that the situation does not make the youths in the community happy and appealed for the government’s intervention.
“Anytime we see this kind of situation, we, as youth and members of the community, are not always happy. So, we want the government to help look into that area to ensure that the construction work is speed up”, he appealed.
He also appealed to the government to pay compensation to families whose houses were demolished in Igbogbo in the wake of the construction.
“In terms of compensation, not everybody has been paid. As a matter of fact, most people have not been paid and we want the government to also look into this”, Faniyi appealed.
“The rush with which the government did the demolition of houses, it was like they will start work the next day but very surprising that till now, nothing tangible has been done in terms of construction
“Yes, the contractor has moved to site, but it is not about that.It is more about ensuring that the road is done in a speedy manner that we’ll make people to make use of it”, he said.