LAGOS: Residents Fault Illegal Closure Of Streets
RESIDENTS of Mushin, Okota and Oshodi areas of Lagos State have expressed displeasure over the illegal shutdown of streets by persons engaging in funerals, birthdays, naming ceremonies and political rallies, among others.
They complained that the trend, which is on the increase, hinders them from gaining access to their homes.
One resident, Abiodun Ajayi, lamented: “On that fateful day, I came back from work but could not gain access to my house. I was very disappointed. I confronted the offenders. They said they had a right to hold the event because, according to them, they equally had houses on the street. I will advise people to rent halls rather than constitute themselves into a nuisance. Also, persons in authority should curtail these excesses and free the roads. Roads belong to everybody, and none should deprive others of their use.”
Damola Ogunmuyiwa, who lives in Okota: “The situation has become a tradition here. I have personally taken the matter to court, believing that we cannot continue to wait for government’s intervention. We have to fight for our rights, so that others will not trample on them.”
Reacting, the Principal Information Officer, Oshodi/Isolo Local Government Area, Mrs. Yusuf Adetutu, said the bylaw of the local government does not allow residents to block streets for the purpose of holding events.
“We have been encouraging people to go to school compounds whenever they want to hold programmes. Such events should not be used as excuse to rob people of their freedom of movement.
“We have a group of boys who work for the council. They go round residential areas, to see that no one blocks the roads. When we discover a violation, however, we do not break up the event. Our boys storm the house of the offender, the following day, and impose a fine.
“We have a customary court where the offenders are judged. We have been doing our best to ensure that roads are free for people to go about their businesses. We have arrested many people who violated the law and made them face the consequences. We have also been advising people to be law abiding, and good citizens.”