Angry residents blocked the Ibeju-Epe road in Lagos State to protest against deplorable state of the roads leading to the ancient town yesterday. The protest, which was organised by members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), in conjunction with Epe youths, began in the early hours, which crippled both vehicular and human movement and causing gridlocks on the Lekki-Epe Expressway corridor.
The protest also paralysed commercial activities in the area as the youths barricaded the road, chanting solidarity songs. According to them, the exit roads from Epe through Ibeju, Ijebu-Ode and Ikorodu had become deplorable, while the present states of the roads had shot up transport fares in the area. For instance, a trip from Epe to Lagos now costs N1,000, the said.
The activities of the protesters attracted the intervention of the lawmaker representing Epe Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Wale Raji, who called on the residents to be calm.
Raji said he had been in communication with the state government on the states of the roads and was informed that the contract for the rehabilitation of some of the roads had been awarded to Hitech Construction Company, which were expected to commence work soon.
“Following the distress calls and the reports I received on the protest and road blockage today, I again put a call through to the Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, who gave assurances that all logistics and documentations impeding the commencement of the project had been sorted out as of yesterday (Tuesday) and that the contractor will commence work on the road tomorrow (Thursday).”
While appreciating the perseverance of the people, he pleaded with them to remain calm and avoid breakdown of law and order. He also urged them to be conscious of the prevalence of the COVID-19 and observe the guidelines on self-protection so as to remain safe.