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Scores of travelers and traders have been stranded on the Lagos- Abeokuta Expressway after it was locked down by members of the Nigerian Labour Congress in Ogun state and residents of the area.
The deplorable road became messier on Wednesday following the protest staged by the NLC and residents of the areas over the poor condition of the road .
The road was shut down due to the expiration of the 21- day ultimatum given to the Ogun State and the Federal government to fix the deplorable road.
PLATFORM TIMES had reported that the NLC had on October 6 stormed the Sango portion of the Lagos-Abeokuta highway, with a threat to shut down the State if nothing was done within 21 days.
But, having waited fruitlessly for the reconstruction of the road after the expiration of the ultimatum , the workers and residents gathered at Sango again for the protest, carrying placards with various inscriptions such as “Enough of bad governance”, “Dapo Abiodun, let us enjoy the dividends of democracy in Ogun”, “Dapo, this suffering is too much”, “Hear our cries, Ogun people are suffering”, “Dapo repair our roads, it is our right,” and others.
The development made the travelers plying the road to be stranded .
Some travellers who were seen trekking due to the fact that the traffic was standstill .
Having observed the situation , the Chairman of the NLC ,Emmanuel Bankole who led the protest said the planned shut down has been suspended .
Bankole explained further that the initial plan was to shut down the entire State, but for the efforts of the Governor Dapo Abiodun government.
He said “Ordinarily, the decision was to shut down this place entirely, but the efforts that we have seen by the State Government, the place will not be shut down.
“We are sensitive, we are not here to inflict pains on the citizens of the State.
” The citizens are already in pain. We are not here to add to it but to make a statement loud and clear that we won’t allow them to make a mess of us, just like Raji Fashola coming here to tell us that work would start immediately and nothing was done for more than two months. This is unacceptable to us and we are ready to take actions.
“Our people are on ground here to monitor the state of progress. We have our networks all over the state. We would not allow them to come and do window-dressing and leave this place. We want to be monitoring day to day progress on the road, I can assure our people about that.”
Condemning the federal.government on the deplorable condition of the road , the NLC chairman described the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, as a liar and an enemy of the State.
He said Fashola had visited Ogun some months ago, promising to commence reconstruction works on the collapsed portions of the Sango road.
He said: “21 days ago, we were here. We gave ultimatum to government that we are not pleased with the state of the roads; particularly the Minister of Works coming here to promise that palliative works will commence immediately and several weeks after nothing was done. That was why the 21 days ultimatum was given.
“Interestingly, few days ago, they started some works. We can see some loads of granites by the State Government. But this is not yet what we asked for. The Minister was here and he promised to commence immediate palliative, that is yet to happen.
“As such, Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola, for coming to lie to the citizens of Ogun State, he is being declared ‘persona non grata’ in Ogun State. We are declaring him an enemy of Ogun State. We don’t want to see him in Ogun State for coming to fool and deceive us that palliative works will commence and nothing was done.
“We saw what is in ground which is the effort of the State Government. The Federal Government cannot be collecting all the money and be inflicting pains on us. That’s why we are here to make the statement loud and clear that Babatunde Raji Fashola, the Ministry of Works and also the FERMA in Ogun State are being declared persona non grata.
“When we leave this place, we are going to the FERMA’s office in Abeokuta and also Ministry of Works to send message to their headquarter in Abuja that we are not pleased with what they are doing.”