Whenever it rains in Lagos , residents are thrown into deep despair, sorrow , anguish and sadness, as already bad roads become almost impassable .
From the island to the mainland , the expressways to the inner streets, it is tale of neglect and abandonment , promises delayed or even out rightly forgotten, as Lagosians labour under the burden of dilapidated roads .
There is hardly any stretch of road that is totally free of potholes , including the recently repaired stretch between Cele and Iyana -Isolo on the Oshodi -Apapa expressway, which is already coming apart with a massive pothole at Sadiku , directly under the pedestrian bridge , at mechanic bus stop, Iyana – Isolo and 5 -Star. The whole service lane on both sides of the express , from Charity to Oshodi has been condemned totally .
Agege Motor Road , especially the Mushin – Idi -Oro axis , is in a terrible state and even trailers are reluctant to pass through , as the potholes have gotten so big , causing vehicles to break down, thereby worsening the gridlock . Motorists sometimes get robbed by traffic robbers while slowing down at the bad spots.
A journey of minutes now takes hours as a result of bad roads across the state . It is now a common sight to see overturned trailers , tankers and containers and broken down vehicles on a daily basis , especially when it rains .
Speaking with The Guardian , Umar Uduma said : “Our road here , especially Agip Estate area towards Mobile Estate in Satellite Town is very bad. It spoils our motorcycle and destroys our engine .
“While riding, we have to be very careful so that the mud doesn ’t splash on our passengers . “Government is not doing anything concerning the roads here , despite the fact that we have cried out several times ”.
Brown Okparachi added : “The road from Orile to the Island and Badagry is nothing to write home about . A journey of 30 minutes has turned to four hours .
“Road safety and LASTMA officials are not helping matters; they do not do their work as it should be done , but rather look for motorists to extort and cause even more traffic .
“The rain makes things worse for us , as the road becomes filled with water and you won’ t know where the potholes are.
“Government has been working on a project along Abule – Ado for some time now and it isn ’t completed . Government should hasten the project, as this is another major cause of traffic .”
Timi Simeon, a resident of Badore , was very bitter when speaking with The Guardian. He fumed: “Government at the local level is practically useless , as it doesn ’t do anything . Everyday, I have to park my car on the main road and walk home, because there is no road for the car to pass. If you try driving on the road , be prepared to spend all your money on mechanics .
“Government should please do something about this ; we can ’ t keep living like this .” Fatuya Joshua , a student , said “you can hardly find a road without potholes now and this has contributed immensely to the high rate of accidents and deaths in Nigeria . Despite huge allocations for infrastructure yearly , the roads are getting worse everyday .
“Aside the bad roads issue , most roads lack proper road signs. Containers are not strapped or hooked properly to the trailer and many drive with bad tyres and no brakes . The road safety officials would not see them , but will always see private motorists .
“In conclusion , most contractors embezzle the money given to them for the job and end up constructing the roads with inferior materials , which at the end of the day increases the number of bad roads around .
“Government needs to wake up , something has to be done , as people are dying as a result of these roads .” The road leading to Gown Estate in Egbeda is terrible and plying it means regular visit to the mechanics .
Chief Gabriel Egbule said it has never been this bad, lamenting that it has been abandoned for too long , leading to its current state .
He appealed to government to come to the aid of the residents , motorists and those undertaking commercial activities in the area by fixing the road .
In like manner , Emeka Nmadichie , a can driver, told The Guardian that the dilapidated state of the road is a result of blocked underground drainage built in the middle of the road ; hence when its rains , the entire road get flooded and gets worse over time.
“There is only one underground drainage and it is blocked , but that type of drainage is not what this road needs , because it is wide .
“The estate road needs a two -sided regular drainage that can easily be cleared when it is blocked ,” he said .
Nmadichie added that the estate road is impassable when its rains because its get flooded to the brim such that pedestrians cannot even use the road .
Also speaking , a fashion designer in the estate ( name withheld ) said the road has been in total disrepair for the past four years and government has refused to do anything about it.
“Once it rains heavily and I am at home, I don ’t bother coming to my shop , and if I am in the shop , I try to lockup as quickly as possible , so I don’ t get trapped .
“So , a heavy rainy day for residents and business owners is shambles ” she said . A resident of Ijegun in Alimosho Council , Peter Anene , said the road linking Ikotun with Igando , which was rehabilitated by the Bola Tinubu administration , are now full of potholes .
“Hooligans on motorcycles take advantage of the deplorable condition of the roads to attack passengers at night, especially in traffic .
“I have been observing the deep potholes by Papa -Major bus/ stop, they seem to be getting wider by the day and with the heavy rainfalls being experienced , the road might collapse any day from now .”
Joan Osemeke claimed that the water gathering in potholes is causing sickness for residents in her area .
“We have been treating ourselves of various kinds of sicknesses . The smell of the water is what irritates me the most , no fresh air because of the environment . Government should do something quickly about the roads ,” he added .
Nana Oritsegbubemi said : “This issue of bad roads should be a thing of the past. Every time a new government comes in, they promise us that they will repair and make changes to the roads , but they end up doing nothing . ”
He explained how devastating the traffic along Oshodi – Abeokuta expressway is: “They say they are constructing BRT lanes and this is causing very heavy traffic . People going to their places of business are stuck for hours on end , getting to their places of work very late.
“Government should have expanded the roads first before the BRT lane construction started . ”
According to Ernest Ojelum : “All the roads in Isolo are complete disaster. Most of these potholes started small , but now they can swallow a small vehicle whole when it rains .
“Maintenance has always been our problem in Nigeria . It costs less to repair than to rebuild , but I guess it is a means of embezzling money for politicians . “Government should help us by at least covering up the potholes temporarily .”
Aliyu Effiong said : “Government should come to our aid . It is frustrating and exhausting, especially when traffic keeps one on the road for hours .
“I rarely drive to walk , because it is tiring, driving for hours. So , I board public busses , which is very stressful .”
According to Promise Daudu: “I don’t really think the government is taking the issue of these bad roads serious . I honestly think the government should start working on it as soon as possible . “Maintenance also goes a long way in preserving the lifespan of the roads .”
Thank God Ukachi berated the government, saying : “Governments are not doing what they are meant to do. The roads are bad; too many potholes and we end up visiting the mechanics often, spending money unnecessarily .
“I don’t know if the government has special arrangement with Lagos mechanics , because this is too much . Government should interlock the roads , especially Community road in Abule -Ado”.
Motorists plying the Odogunyan – Ogijo road in Ikorodu area are bitter and wondering why the state government has seemingly abandoned them to their fate.
Quadri Akomolafe told The Guardian : “Look at this road yourself and tell me if this is meant for humans or animals . How can a major road like this be this bad for years and despite all our cries and pleas , this place is still like this ?
“This same road spoiled my car , so I took my wife’ s car and it is already making strange noises . I don ’t know what to do again , as we are now at the mercy of commercial motorcycles .
“Anytime rain falls early in the morning , I ’m not going to work that day and if the rain falls before the close of work , I usually stay with my friend in Bariga .
“The other day when rain fell , danfo buses were charging Odogunyan N 300 and 0 gijo N 400 . I couldn ’t believe my ears, something that used to cost N 50 and N 100 , respectively .
“This government doesn ’t have our interests at heart at all . If this was the road to the houses of government officials or top politicians , will it remain like this till date ?
“In fact, there is a type of rain that would fall that even okada riders will refuse to ply the roads , afraid of falling into the gutters , and you will see people trekking en -masse . We are fed up with this situation.”
Meanwhile, phone calls and text messages sent to the mobile phone lines of the state ’s Commissioner for Information and Strategy , Steve Ayorinde , over this issue were unreturned and unanswered as at the time of going to press .
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