6th October, 2010
Chairman, Apapa-Iganmu Local Council Development Area of Lagos State, South West Nigeria,Â Dr. Samuel Adedayo, who lamented that residents of the area live under alarmingÂ conditions, also stressed that the council had been overwhelmed by massive unemployedÂ youths who reside in the slums, adding that the level of criminal activities by some ofÂ them was on the increase.
He said the need to attend to the slum challenges in the area was important because ofÂ the huge population that lived under terrible conditions.
According to Adedayo, the makeshift houses in the slums are built with planks whichÂ further makes the entire area populated by not less than 200,000 people susceptible toÂ fire.
He noted that recently, the council had had to come out with a bye-law forbidding anyÂ developer from erecting makeshift houses with plank.
According to him, â€œthe need to attract the attention of the federal, state andÂ international donors to come and see how people live in the slums in this LCDA has becomeÂ imperative. There are so many buildings built with planks, so, fire incidence is a commonÂ occurrence and that is why we have made laws that forbid erection of makeshift buildings,Â while the idea is to eventually phase out those buildings.
â€œApapa-Iganmu is very notorious for crime because of the numerous slums and we have beenÂ having running battle with them since we assumed office. They said they were unemployedÂ and we provided 230 jobs for them. That was what reduced the crime rate but these peopleÂ are not employable because they have no certificates.â€
The council boss, who spoke on various development issues in the area, also noted that inÂ order to reduce corruption in the system, elected political office holders should be madeÂ to work on part-time basis.
According to him, â€œNigerian democracy cannot be sustained because of the huge costs. IfÂ there is no oil today, how do governments at the various levels survive? Running a localÂ government, for instance, is not supposed to be a full-time job because if oil dries upÂ today, there will be problems and as such, running the council should be a part-timeÂ arrangement where the leaders meet after regular jobs to take decisions on developmentÂ issues.â€