8th July, 2011
Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State has taken his battle to sanitise the state to Sango where he dislodged all illegal traders selling on the road and under the bridge.
There was commotion as officials of the state traffic enforcement agency, TRACE, assisted by policemen, removed all makeshift structures erected by traders under the bridge and by the roadside, while those affected struggled to salvage their wares.
Members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, motorists and commuters who spoke with P.M.NEWS on the latest development commended the governor for his swift response barely three months after he was sworn in.
Commenting on the development, Alhaji Olayiwola Alatishe, Chairman of NURTW, Iyana Ota, said: “I am very happy with what the ACN-led government is doing in Ogun State. The motor park where the traders were dislodged was given to us in 1979 and we have all the necessary documents to back it up but the area boys backed by the PDP-led government then did not allow us to take possession of the land.
“The local government also refused to give us support. In order not to disturb the peace, we left them.
“Now, there is a new law that says anybody who sells in the motor park should be arrested. This shows that Governor Amosun is very responsive and cares about the plight of the people.”
The NURTW chieftain also implored the governor to warn policemen extorting money from commuter bus drivers to stop the shameful practise.
He appealed to the governor further to rehabilitate Sango motor park to make it easy for the use of drivers and commuters.
Also commenting on the exercise, a community leader in the area, Alhaji Abayomi Abass said he was impressed with the governor’s action and pleaded with him not to ban commercial motorcyclists in the area but provide them with their own park.
Titilayo Idowu, a commercial motorcylist, urged the governor to do something about the harassment of motorcyclists by TRACE personnel.
A senior TRACE officer, Omonayajo Elias Adebayo, explained that the illegal traders and squatters were dislodged under the bridge and on the road to prevent a repeat of what happened on Tuesday at Joju Bus Stop when some roadside traders and hawkers were crushed to death by a tipper lorry which lost control.
“What we are doing is to ensure free flow of traffic and prevent accident in Sango,” he added.
He appealed to the dislodged traders to get shops inside the market instead of putting their lives in danger.
P.M.NEWS also spoke with people whose shops were destroyed. Chika Obina is one of them. “I am not happy with what the government is doing here. They destroyed our shops without giving us notice. They gave us just one hour to pack all our wares. This is unfair,â€ he lamented.
Two of the affected traders, Musiliu Akeem and Bolaji Olayinda, however, expressed satisfaction with what the governor has done and appealed to others to support the governor in his crusade to sanitise the environment.
They appealed to the governor to improve security in the state by dislodging the area boys who extort money from them in Sango and provide lock up shops and market for the people at affordable prices.
â€”Kehinde Alatise and Dedeigbo Ayodeji