Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, Please Clear This Biological Weapon!

The challenge before President Buhari and Governor Ambode is to order the immediate demolition of the illegally built houses and structures that have been used to block the underground sewage channels in Festac Town. That is the only and final solution.

We are citizens of Nigeria and they owe us this responsibility-to clean our environment. The government should stop killing us with biological weapons!

Governor  Akinwunmi Ambode, Please Clear This Biological Weapon!

By Adeola Aderounmu (Sweden)

One of the most disgusting views in Lagos State is embedded in my local government area. On 4th Avenue, 402 Road in Festac Town is a deep river of sewage flowing like the River Nile.

The sewage accumulating and flowing on the streets is a source of death and therefore represents a biological warfare against the people of 402 Road in Festac Town. Is the Lagos state government or the federal government of Nigeria at war with the people?

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There are a number of theories on why faeces that are flushed from the toilets in this area of Festac now flows directly to the streets on which the people live.

No one can doubt that the plans for Festac Town were destroyed by the Federal Housing Authority when lands reserved for recreations and natural conservation were sold to some useless Nigerian millionaires by some useless government workers on behalf of the federal government of Nigeria.

The consequences and results of the deviation from the original, functional plans of Festac are what we are facing today. There are rivers of sewage scattered around in the estate. In addition, the estate is now over-congested and bastardly disorganised.

Once the pride of Africa, Festac town is now an area filled with shame and filth.

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The sad reality is that it is not only in Festac Town that the citizens of Nigeria sleep and wake up surrounded by sewage. But l’m staying with the Festac problem as that is my constituency.

 

The end of festac

[To watch the video, visit my Youtube channel-Adeola Aderounmu, or my facebook https://www.facebook.com/adeola ]

 

The most obvious danger ahead of the people of 402 Road is that an epidemic is imminent. That is if one is not already in progress because the people have been surrounded by this flowing sewage for several years.

I wish a student from a Department Medical Parasitology of the University of Lagos can understake a medical research project on 402 Road/4th Avenue area of Festac Town. The results will be useful in understanding the statuses of the health of the people in the area.

The probability that the inhabitants of this area are suffering from ill-health and infections like typhoid as a result of this crime committed by government, is high.

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One cannot rule out deaths related to this polluted and heavily stinking environment. Children and the elderly would have been particularlty susceptible.

If the useless government workers who sold land to the useless Nigerian millionaires had not sold the land area adjacent to, and surrounding the 402 Road area, the flow of sewage would not have been disrupted.

The greatest fear is that this river of sewage could be an accumulation of all the faeces flowing from the entire Festac Town estate. My hypothesis is based on my knowledge of the area.

There is a playground nearby which also houses the facility for recyling sewage waste from the estate.

It is the only place in Festac where l have seen the facility. When we played football those days, our football used to fall inside the facility. So we had some catchers whose job was to save the ball from falling into the sewage recycle facility.

I have not fully investigated if the recycling center is functional now but l saw that the area was inaccessible. Why would anyone make a fence around the center? Has someone bought and refilled the sewage recycle facility?

Faecal wastes and sewage are not flowing away from residential areas because the federal government of Nigeria sold the areas/lands where the sewage systems have been chanelled underground.

The foolish people and the useless millionaires who bought the land sealed off the sewage channels.

The challenge before President Buhari and Governor Ambode is to order the immediate demolition of the houses that have been built and used to block the underground sewage channel in Festac Town. That is the only and final solution.

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4th Avenue by 402 Road, Festac Town                  

There are a lot of messes in Festac Town that are now irreversible. But this particular one is reversible no matter how long the houses have stood. They are illegal structures. If those who sold the land on behalf of the federal government can be found alive, they should be rounded up and prosecuted.

There is a report that one colonel in the Nigerian army actually contributed to this problem. Like many people living on the sewage system and blocking the channels, he is alleged to have applied ”cement” on his side of the channels. That was his own permanent solution to the problem. The implication is that for all he cares ”all the people on 402 road can die of diseases”.

On this matter it is very important that the Lagos state government and the federal government do not apply the Nigerian solution. That would be the sucking away of the river of sewage with the full knowledge that the river will overflow again. We don’t want that!

Nigerians are in love with temporary solutions. They love cosmetic solutions. This is because they want the problem to persist so that someone or a contractor can always make money from the contracts of temporary solutions.

Have you ever wondered why Nigerian roads for example are never going to be of international standard? Go figure now.

Anyway, as for this river of sewage in Festac Town, no one should expect that this is the last time they will be reading about this especially if the state and federal government continue to pretend as if this problem does not exist.

This is now one of my struggles.

My intention is to inform the governor of Lagos State and in fact Mr. Buhari the president of Nigeria, about this danger and for them to act without any delay. There is no need for more paper work or talking on this matter. They should get up from their comfort zones and clear this nonsense.

We are citizens of Nigeria and they owe us this responsibility-to clean our environment. The government should stop killing us with biological weapons!

The people living in this area of Festac Town and people visiting them are exposed to diseases that could end their lives prematurely. They can all die of diseases because of the river of sewage. Invariably the government has been at a biological warfare with the people.

Again, if nothing is done soon, l will be reminding governor Akinwunmi Ambode of this problem. If the tenures of Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode as Lagos state governor and Mr. Buhari as the president of Nigeria do not succeed in demolishing the houses that are blocking the flow of sewage out of Festac, we will carry the struggle to their respective successors.

Our people must not be left to die of diseases because of the carelessness of goverment workers-those who sold lands that are meant to be reserved and preserved.

It is obvious that the residents have done their best and got tired of writing letters of appeals to the local and state government. I can imagine hundreds of letters to the local government. I can just imagine thousands of letters to the Federal Housing Authority. I can imagine some whispers into the ears of former Governor Fashola about this problem.

My columns and my blog pages will not rest until this matter is solved.  We will remind the state and the federal  government about their wickedness and heartlessness.

How can any government allow her people to live under this condition for even 1 day out of life?

It is unacceptable and as a matter of fact, those who knew about this problem before now and refused to act have committed crimes against humanity.

By international standard, allowing people to die unjustly in the absence/presence of war is a criminal offence and that angle will also be pursued in due time.

I am sure that with time, we will find out those who knew about this problem and did nothing.

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                       402 Road, A Close, Festac Town                            

We are talking about the living conditions of humans here.

I am actually surprise that the people of 402 Road have not made a decision to close down the local govenrment through massive protests. They are faced with a biological warfare and in ignorance have chosen to die because they got tired of writing letters of appeal.

I hope they will find the courage one day to lock down the Amuwo Odofin Local Government so that the sole administrator or the chairman can report to the governor who should tackle the problem head-on or call on the Federal Minsitry of Works and Housing to remove all obstructions in the way of sewage flow in Festac.

We must combine all our efforts and unite in order to rescue ourselves from maladministration.

The people everywhere must move away from the era of writing letters of appeal to actually carrying out demonstrations that will shut down their local councils or even the state government if necessary.

The problems and challenges facing Nigeria are many but we must tarry and remain united in the fight for the good of all.

Evil will continue to rise in the land when all the good people remain silent

Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, please go and clear Festac Town of the lingering biological warfare.

Mr. Mohammadu Buhari, please go and clear the messes left by the federal workers who planted biological warfare in Festac Town.

I stand with the people of 402 Road.

#Istandwith402road

 

aderounmu@gmail.com

 

 

[Story and All Images by Adeola Aderounmu]

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Festac Town- A Symbol Of A Failed Society

By Adeola Aderounmu

In a number of my articles published in 2007 at various places on the internet I wrote about the Rise and Fall of Festac Town Parts 1 & 2.

21 Road Festac Town

21 Road Festac Town

I went to Festac 15th Dec 2010 and I am not ready to change my stories. Generally Governor Fashola has ensured that the presence of the Police on Lagos road is now more significant. Therefore even though there are still criminal activities in Lagos, they are not as rampant as they were in 2005/ 2006 when Tinubu was the alaye.

Festac therefore remains a relatively safe environment, a sort of enclave.

My observations about the management of Festac Town indicate that the Amuwo Odofin Local Council is a very unserious one. Several Roads in Festac are bad and un-motorable. Generally the roads in other parts of the local area are bad. I almost drove into a ditch near Oluti.

Fashola is not a magician and Lagosians need to be told that Local Governments also have responsibilities and obligations. I intend to write about this in another piece.

21 Road in Festac is a dead-end. In fact my car got spoilt just before Emem Hospital. The 2 valleys on that road were filled with water and it was impossible to know how deep the gullies were. I should have turned back. I was driving a friend whose son was on admission at the Hospital and I wanted to be nice to him. We went to see his wife and son-who was responding well to treatment.

When we got to 21/31 junction, I parked my car and my cousin did a routine check on the car. We managed to drive away in one bit.

21 Road is a disaster. The people of Festac should start asking for the contracts that have been awarded on roads in Festac in recent years. It is common knowledge that budgets are made annually to cater for construction and repair of roads. Where have the monies allocated for Festac roads disappeared to?

21 Road Festac Town


On 72 road just before you enter 721 approaching from 7th avenue, you will find a terribly deep gully. Pity I couldn’t take the pictures of that road. While approaching, you will be forced to stop because it looks like a bottomless pit. At the tip of the gully, you will then find out that it is possible to navigate down and up again. Does Amuwo Odofin have a local government chairman? Does he drive on Festac Roads? Oh my…!

On 24 Road approaching from 71 Road the story is the same. The roads are so bad they rank among the worst roads in the world. I have no doubts in my mind that Nigerian roads are among the worst roads in the world. That I would drive on such roads in my own locality in Festac Town is worrying.

On Christmas Day there was a terrible accident on 5th avenue. A salon Rover car collided with a HIACE bus near the A close end of 5th Avenue. One of the cars was avoiding a pot hole and the other one probably was claiming right of way. 5th Avenue is not a very bad road as such but the small pot hole was tangible enough to cause an accident.

Bad roads and careless driving makes a dangerous blend. This combination is partly responsible for the high accident rates and deaths on Nigerian roads.

I am impressed though that the Amuwo Odofin Local Government was able to save and preserve the stone field on 23 Road X close/ 5th Avenue H1 close. There is a fence around it now and competitions are organized regularly. Football and Basketball thrives still on that ground. For these I am glad.

Stone Field, 23 road X close

Stone Field, 23 road X close


It’s just still sad though that the general problems in Nigeria add twists to every story of disappointment. Lack of electricity, lack of pipe-borne water, dilapidation/near extinction of public schools and other social-economic problems add up to the problems of neglect by local authorities. Therefore people are living under hard and harsh conditions. Nigerians are suffering.

One of my former students just asked me: who will be the change? Well, we have been told to look into the mirror and be the change we want to see in the world. But when evil is more than good or when good is quiet as evil rises, the world cannot be a better place.

No one (except Jesus) has been reported to be capable of saving the world. If we do the right thing in our niches, we will build a viable ecosystem. We may not save the world, but we will make our world a better place for everyone.

Festac Town, Very Dirty Place.

Festac Town, Very Dirty Place.


The Amuwo Odofin Local Government Chairman and all the local legislators should rise up and live up to the promises they made to the residents of the area. Save Festac from total collapse!

Becoming a Stateless Nigerian..!

Adeola Aderounmu

Around 1989/1990 I applied for the Lagos State Scholarship Board Award /Grant. The intended study would have allowed me to pursue a medical career at foreign University. When I was invited to the interview there were strong indications that I was a top candidate because I had scored 6 distinctions in all the subjects that I took in the GCE exams.

Backed by strong recommendations from two of my secondary school teachers added to 6 more distinctions and 2 credits in my WASC I was confident of my upcoming sponsored academic trip abroad.

As the interview progressed it seemed that all was well until one woman on the panel of interviewers asked me what became the critical question. I know one Aderounmu at the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and you are actually a carbon copy of him, do you know him, she asked?

I answered in the affirmative because she was referring to my dad’s cousin Bukola Aderounmu whom I’d hardly met. I cannot even describe the man in 4 sentences yet I was being told at this interview that we look alike. By asking that question, the woman was actually trying to let everyone know that my family is from Ogun State. The interview ended and I never heard a word again from the LSSB.

To give a clearer picture: I was born in Lagos and when I started primary school my father always made it clear to me that my state of origin is Lagos but I discovered later that my parents are actually from Abeoukta in Ogun State. It became a tedious routine to always make those trips from Festac Town to Agege Local Government at the beginning of each school year.

I had to collect proof of origin every term and of course tax clearance certificates of parents. Was my dad avoiding this trip to Abeokuta to obtain evidence of origin? How convenient it was to say that we were from Amuwo Odofin Local Government when the local governments became proliferated just like that!

I remembered that at a certain point when we could make our own decisions, the children all reverted to Ogun State. But what do I know about Ogun State? Before I left Nigeria in 2002, I can count on my fingers how many times I have been to Abeokuta.

In 1986 age 14 I went to Abeoukta to attend a chieftaincy title ceremony of some family members. I was held spellbound to discover that we even had a McGregor in our extended family! I cannot remember any other time that I went to Ogun State before then.

Around 1988 or thereabout I went to Igbogila to visit my grandfather who had left Abeokuta and relocated to this quiet town perhaps even before I was born. Up to this day, I don’t even know if Igbogila is in Oyo, Osun or Ogun State.

My third memory of Ogun State was when I went as a tourist taking along with me the members of NAZS, UNILAG chapter. It was during this excursion in 1994 that I re-discovered places like Lantoro and Olumo rock. We went to a famous abattoir but I don’t remember where.

Interestingly in December 2001, I went to Abeokuta with some colleagues from MEDILAG. We attended the wedding ceremony of a friend and co-researcher. While the wedding ceremony was in progress, I quickly dashed out of the church and waved down a taxi. I told the driver that I was going to the house of the Produce Buyer.

Apparently, my mother’s father Fidimaiye Majekodunmi was a famous merchant in his days. He died in 1972 just before I was born but in 2001 the taxidriver could still take me to his house unhindered.

I had no address with me and my mother just told me to mention produce buyer to any taxi driver. It worked like magic! I arrived safely in front of the house and my grandmother was shocked but overwhelmed with joy that her grandson came. My grandmother died a few months later and I was already in Europe at that time.

I am still happy that I saw her that fateful day sometime in Dec 2001 and it was very shocking to see that my mother’s family house is just next door to Olumo rock. From my grandmother’s room, I could almost touch Olumo rock that I had climbed as a tourist in 1994. I was moved to tears. I mean, I came as a tourist to my parents’ homeland.

But I remain worried about my present Nigerian status. Lagos is still the only place that I know. In fact, I can get lost once I go outside Festac Town. My conscious and unconscious trips to Ogun State are definitely less than 10 occasions-of which I remember 4. I almost did my youth service in Lagos but I was contented with knowing Ibadan for those 10-12 months.

During my service year I was always back to Festac at least once a month. While I studied at UNILAG, I went back home every weekend. I could fall sick if I missed any of those Saturday or Sunday football games on our stony field. It was almost criminal to even miss the church service before the Sunday games.

I am afraid that I actually don’t have any (political) constituency in Nigeria. Lagosians will be quick to tell me that my name is Ogunish and tell me that I look like one Aderounmu or Majekodunmi, that my family houses are in Abeokuta and Igbogila-and where is Igbogila for goodness sake?

Ogun State will not forget to tell me that I don’t know my way around the state. I don’t even know the size and economic strength of the State. But I can read those in the books. I’m good at that. In both situations, the segregation and discrimination in our society will be exposed and exploited.

Nigeria is a society that is seriously segregated and divided. We go abroad and complain of racism but we are more racist to one another in Nigeria than the Americans or Europeans are towards us.

My father must have had one Nigeria in mind when he decided to tell us that we (his children) are Lagosians. We were all born in Lagos. We went to school in Lagos and had very little contact or connections with Abeokuta.

Even my grandfather made Igbogila his home, owning houses and farmlands. My father did not even bother to inherit any of those materials. He wasn’t bothered with parental possessions/inheritance. So who inherited my grandfather’s landed property? My father’s mother was based in Agege for all the years that I knew her. There were no Ileya Festivals without a traditional visit to Iya Eleja. She would have sponsored the Aso Ebi well in advance. Oh my God, how we dressed in uniforms-children, grandchildren and great grandchildren!

My mother’s mother was called Mama Onifade because she settled and lived on Onifade Street after she returned from her several years of business sojourn to Ghana. She went back to Abeokuta towards the end of her life. As a Medilag student/employee, I was excited to rediscover Onifade Street near the second gate exit of LUTH. It was nostalgic when my mother told me that was where we went visiting Mama Onifade.

Here I am paying huge taxes in Stockholm and contributing to the development of Sweden and not even certain of where exactly I belong in Nigeria. I know my way around Europe but I can easily be declared missing if I take a trip within Nigeria. Where is my constituency in the federal character system? Have I become a stateless Nigerian? I think so.

But I would rather serve on merit than on federal character-a subtle licence that has destroyed the foundations and efficiency of the nation. I would love to be taken for what I am and the principles that I radiate rather than where I come from. I long for home but please give me a state or even a constituency first!

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This article was published in the Nigerian Punch Newspaper onb April 11 2009

On Becoming a Stateless Nigerian