Yesterday, I attended the naming ceremony of a beautiful baby girl delivered by a new young couple that recently began to worship at our church. They live at Ajagba, Wakajaye area and nothing prepared me for what I saw along the way.
I was told that the area could be easily accessed by motorcycles and from Iyana Church, I was told I would pay the cyclist N70.
So I called a taxi and we began our journey. Few minutes into the trip you wouldn’t suspect anything could go wrong until we got to the end of the section of the road that got the attention of the state government. The good portion of the road shouldn’t be more than one kilometer. After which we began to navigate what is undoubtedly the worst road that I’ve seen in my entire life.
There are several pools of stagnant water right in the middle of the road and lots of sharp bends and corners that a stranger in the area may not easily navigate. We spent more than 20 minutes on the road and believe me when I say it was an annoying experience.
Even though the cyclist really tried, we had to literally paddle through muddy water and I got my feet wet.
So I asked the cyclist for how long the road had been in such a bad shape and he said it has been like that for quite a long time.
At first I thought the neglect is as a result of the poor status of the people that stay in the area, but on close observation I realised that there are several nice buildings and posh cars. Furthermore I was told there are prominent and highly influential people in the society that reside in the area.
Why will they be dealing with this paddling experience daily when they could just call the attention of the government to the poor state of the road so that something could be done?
Asking residents of the area about their thoughts on the poor state revealed they have accepted their fate and they are living their lives without any belief that the government could do something for them.
“If we have people in this area that can ‘single-handedly’ fund the road repair project and they choose not to do something, why should we be waiting on the government to help us out?” the Okada rider told me.
He said accidents are prominent on the road.
“When we get knocked down, we don’t have a choice apart from rising up, treating our wounds and getting back on the bikes again,” he said.
Even though the road is in bad shape, children in the area are in top spirit. They run around happily and sometimes butt naked and their parents are always on the lookout to ensure they don’t fall in any of the ditches nor get knocked down by motorcyclists.
For a first time visitor like me, it would always be a risky ride, but for the residents, it is just another day in an area where the residents are already used to government’s abandonment, unperturbed rich neighbors and potholes they spell danger to everyone.
PS: The area is under Egbeda Local Government and I saw APC bus along the way.