Light-up Oyo project will return after ongoing audit – Makinde

Oyo State governor, ‘Seyi Makinde has assured residents of the state that his administration will find a permanent solution to the challenges facing the light-up Oyo project after the ongoing audit.

The governor, who gave the assurance while speaking during a special service held at Maranatha Lord Cometh Ministries International, Abayomi, Iwo-Road, Ibadan, said that his administration was also reviewing environmental laws to clean up the environment and remove beggars from the streets.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, quoted the governor as saying that there will be a permanent solution to the epileptic performance of the light-up Oyo project and the traffic congestion being experience by the people of the state.

He added that the traffic gridlock experienced in recent months must have been the result of influxes of people seeking a conducive environment in Oyo State.

He explained that residents should not be afraid of whether the light will come back or not, as according to him, it will definitely come back in a sustainable manner.

Similarly, the governor vowed to get beggars and the destitute off the streets as soon as possible.

He warned lawbreakers, to turn a new leaf by obeying environmental and traffic laws, adding that violators of state laws would not go unpunished under Omituntun 2.0.

He promised to fix the road that leads to the church as quickly as possible.

He said, “You know, it is one thing to be here and another thing to do something that you can remember. So, your request to fix this road is approved. And let it be on record that this is done under Omituntun 1.0.

“Let me also say that we have been blessed with the message this morning of mercy and grace. For the beggars, we are thinking about them and will take them off the streets. Two days ago, I visited the camp at Akinyele but it did not perform as envisaged, but we will take another approach to it. So, between now and May 29th, you will see us taking the beggars off the streets.

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Speaking on the light-up project, he said: “So, an audit is going on right now, and I have asked the Commissioner for Energy to put out a notice. It will take about four to six weeks to complete the audit process, and we will have a permanent solution immediately after that audit. “So, you don’t have to be afraid of whether the light will come back or not. They will definitely come back and stay there sustainably.

“The second issue is about the investment on the road. As you can see, we have traffic situations here. Well, let me say this: many people are coming into this state from other states because things are being done right here.

“When we came in, we were in a hole. Now, we are out of the hole and yet to start working or running, but we are crawling along and being proactive in how we are situating our infrastructure.” Many people are coming in, and we have to stay ahead of how we provide the infrastructure. If you look at the airport road coming into Ibadan, it is not the same situation as we have in Lagos. We are looking at multiple routes to get to the airport. Not only have we dualized the airport road itself, but the airport road is now going to Ajia to burst out at the Ajia junction. So, if you are going to Ife, you don’t need to get to the junction.

“We also have a new road now going through Oremeji, Agugu, which is right after the gate of the airport.” So, if you are going to the center of the city, you don’t have to come to Iwo Road. You turn in right after the gate to get to Oremeji, Agugu and beyond. Also, on that road to Ajia, we made a spur to Amuloko and from Amuloko, you can turn left and go towards Akanran and Ijebu-Ode, and you can turn right and come to Olorunsogo. Not only are we fixing the road, we are also dualizing the biggest portion, which is about 3.5 km.

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“For example, if you want to come to Secretariat, Gate, Total Garden, and all those neighbouring areas, you don’t have to come in through Iwo Road. The Old Ife Road is being fixed. I was there yesterday night  around 9:30 p.m. and inspected the underpass at Onipepeye. You know it is connected to the Ogbere River, and we have expanded that place. We can never experience floods at Onipepeye like again. If you want to go to Gate, you take the old-Ife road, which has been dualized. No bottleneck. That underpass will be open for traffic before the 29th of May. All of these are under Omituntun 1.0.

“You also touched on waste management. Yes, we have moved from where we used to be but still need to do more, and we are constantly looking at the means to achieve a very clean and presentable environment. I can say we are well on our way. We know the solution, and we are trying to implement it. So, I look forward to a cleaner and saner Ibadan.

“If you look at the roadmap for sustainable development 2023–2027, Section 6, it deals with the rule of law. We have the grace period now, too. Between now and May 29, people will have grace. But starting May 29, I will make the pronouncement and put big billboards at all entry points to Oyo State that will suggest that this will be a state where you will be responsible for your actions.

“We will engage with all stakeholders whose markets are flowing into the roads and causing traffic logjam. We will ask them to be confined within the space provided for buying and selling. I will not go after the sellers, but the buyers. If you want to buy things, go inside the market. We will provide parking spaces and organization within those marketplaces. But if you stay on the road to patronize people who are not supposed to be on the road, you will pay the fine for both of you as the buyer and the seller. We will show mercy on the seller, but the grace will not cover the buyer. We will sensitize the people first.

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“We had the last Exco meeting about a week and a half ago, and we tasked the Exco and they harmonized the Environmental Bill. It is with the Oyo State House of Assembly now, and once it is passed, then there is a law. We will ask people to obey our laws, and we will all be better for it. We have connected almost all of our zones. I went for inspection in three zones of Oyo State, and we did it within five hours and got to Oyo, Oke-Ogun and came back to Ibadan to inspect projects. So, we have put in the handwork but left it to people to obey the law and let the rest also enjoy the benefits of the money we have put into our infrastructure.”.

Earlier in his message, the presiding pastor of the church, Bishop Samuel 1 Olumakinde Alawode who read from the Bible Ephesians 4:7, admonished people to repent of their sins and seek divine grace from the Lord.

While commending the unprecedented feats achieved by the governor in Omituntun 1.0, the cleric charged Governor Makinde to be more active in his second term in office and strive to leave a lasting legacy in the history of the state.

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