Killing On Expressway: Akire, Council Boss, Take Protest To FG

The Akire of Ikire, Oba Olatunde Falabi and the Caretaker Chairman, Irewole Local Government Council Area of Osun State, Prince Soji Ajayi, have protested the nonchalant attitude of the Federal Government to the incessant accident and loss of lives on the Ikire-Expressway. Oba Falabi and Ajayi, in company of traditional chiefs and eminent residents of…”
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August 10, 2011 4:49 pm
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The Akire of Ikire, Oba Olatunde Falabi and the Caretaker Chairman, Irewole Local Government Council Area of Osun State, Prince Soji Ajayi, have protested the nonchalant attitude of the Federal Government to the incessant accident and loss of lives on the Ikire-Expressway.
Oba Falabi and Ajayi, in company of traditional chiefs and eminent residents of Ikire stormed the Osun State Office of the Federal Ministry of Works, Housing and Urban Development on Thursday, in Osogbo, the state capital, demanding the approval of the Federal Government to construct speed-breakers on the Ife-Asejire dual carriageway, which passes through Ikire.
The traditional ruler and the council boss lamented the spate of accidents and avoidable loss lives on the expressway, saying that the community could no longer bear the I-don’t- care attitude of the ministry to their plight.
OSUN DEFENDER learnt that the communities do on weekly bases record accidents and loss of lives on the Alasepe-Naira and Kobo and Asejire area of the highway, due to the sloppy nature of the affected areas.
It was learnt that the council boss, Ajayi had approved the construction of speed-breakers on the Akire Grammar School-Alasepe Church in Ikire expressway in the affected areas, but needed the approval of the federal government before embarking on the project.
The medium learnt that the Federal Ministry of Works, Housing and Urban Development Office in the state had been frustrating the commencement of the bumps’ construction on the expressway, as it refused to approve the work, a development that led to the protest.
However, the state Federal Comptroller of Works, Housing and Urban Development, was forced to approve the construction of the speed-breakers after he was convinced by the Akire and Irewole council boss.
Speaking with OSUN DEFENDER, the council chairman said; “The primary responsibility of any government is the safety of lives and properties. Our records on accidents on the Ife-Asejire dual-carriage way showed that buses coming from Lagos en route Ikire are always on high speed. They would have lost the control of the buses before they got to Naira and Kobo junction in Ikire, due to the slope on the Asejire to Ikire road. This would then resort to accidents.
“Equally, drivers of those buses coming from the Eastern parts of  the country to Lagos and en route Ikire, would have dozed-off before getting to Alasepe area, a little fresh air will just tip them up and before they know it, it is either they hit the electric poles or human beings. This is unbearable. We would have constructed speed-breakers on the highway, but the Federal Ministry of Works; Housing and Urban Development had been frustrating us. Thank God it has reasoned with us now”.
The council chairman maintained that the construction of bumps on the Akire Grammar School-Alasepe Church, in Ikire expressway, would reduce accidents and boost the economy of the council area, as drivers would be forced to slow down, which will afford hawkers on the roadsides to sell their products.
Some of the drivers would also stopover at designated motor-parks in the area to obtain the local government hackney permit receipts, which would boost the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the council, he said.
Ajayi then promised to embark on the bumps construction without wasting time.
It was learnt that the sacked chairman of the council, Mr. Lere Oyewumi had been given approval by the ministry to construct the speed breakers, but failed to implement the project.
The approval letter was dated June 12, 2009 and signed by the state Federal Comptroller of works, Housing and Urban Development, M. O. Dunmoye.

2 Comments

Whilst I sympathise with the concerned party but putting a speed breakers on an expressway is not a very good idea, it can actually costs more accident than prevent it as anyone driving on a dual carriage way presumes it to be so, suddenly finding speed breakers without necessary warnings will cause accidents. If the speed breakers must be installed there must be adequate warnings within 2 miles of approach to slow down otherwise many vehicles will lose controls.
Perhaps we should start to use “by pass” roads to avoid the vilages/towns/cities and use “local routes” & “rest area” roads for vehicles wanting to stop for rest or shop. The use of speed breakers to slow down the traffic on the expressway and allow hawkers to sell their merchandise is suicidal.

On a political note, we need a continuity in this country, if the former chairman had already being given go ahead with the work, there is no reason to apply for it again unless an approval to a PDP chairman is different to an ACN chairman.

I hope the chairman thinks this through before embarking on this project.

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MUSA OLAIWON

It is good news that the dynamic Chairman of Irewole Local Government, the Akire of Ikireland and eminent people of Ikire carried their concerns to the appropriate quarters about the frequent accidents and loss of lives at the famous town. I can’t remember how many people have lost their lives on this section of the road since it was constructed both as a single carriage way and when it was dualised.
Whatever that can be done to alleviate the suffering, loss of lives and properties on this road should be done as soon as possible. Ikire people should forget about former vagabond in power who used to rule Irewole Local Government like Colossus. He came, he saw, he tried his best but his best wasn’t good enough.
In a civilised world, there is no need for speed breakers on the express way, but this is Nigeria where law and orders are disobeyed with impunity by the leaders and the led. Speed breakers will only serve it purpose where there are adequate warnings. Nigeria roads are dead traps and our leaders are not serious about modern road construction. According to available statistics, only 15% of Nigeria road are motorable in a real sense of it
There should be adequate rest places for drivers on long journey to rest and fuel their vehicles. At these rest areas, adequate security is provided and this will not be dens of robbers. Having travelled to France, Begium, Germany and Switzerland, Nigeria roads are the worst in oil producing nations. Nigeria needs four layers roads instead of the current two layers roads our Government is constructing for us. In Britain, I have seen roads which were about 30cm in thickness with layers and layers of concrete and asphalts taking into consideration the traffic volume on the road. Ibadan- Ife road is a very busy road and should be at least 30cm in thickness in order to take care of the volume of traffic on this road. I am not an Engineer, I am a nurse and a Graduate of law but I am always very inquisitive about road construction.
Whosoever constructed the dualisation of Ife-Ibadan road should be sued for incompetency and failure to observe duty of care to the road users. The contractors should be blacklisted no matter how highly placed the owners are.
In Nigeria, road signage is poor and in some cases non-existence, what a nation? Nigeria needs good road signage like other advance economy. For how long are we going to crawl as a nation where other nations are flying?

Musa Olaiwon is a native of Ikire.

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