Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, has decried the poor state of roads in the ancient city, saying “the town has never had it this bad”.
The monarch in a statement issued by his media aide, Moses Olafare lamented the abandonment of roads by both the state and federal government, thereby movement of goods and persons difficult in and out of the town.
Ooni Ogunwusi spoke on Sunday during the commissioning of a 700 metres road at the popular Odo-Ogbe market (Oja Tuntun), Ile-Ife, facilitated by the Ife-born Senior Special Assistant to the President on Legislative matters, Senator Babajide Omoworare.
“I really do not know our offence in Ife to deserve the poor road network that surrounds us.
“It is not enough to call Ife the source, this city deserves to be treated as the true source of humanity that it is.
“It is so bad that the same government that has refused to fix our roads is the one denying us access to do what we can ourselves. All we hear is that it is a government road so we have to keep waiting.
“We are aware that the government cannot do it alone so we want them to put up a scheme, like a form of concession on all major roads in Ife. We would look for able personalities within the community, they will fix the road and they will give them task credit. It is the same.
“Let government give us that opportunity and see whether we will perform, we can now replicate it in other communities across the country.
“We are willing and able to do that on all major roads in Ife, all we need is a form of concessioning that regard,” the Ooni added.
On the Odo-Ogbe market road facilitated by the President’s aide, Ooni Ogunwusi described the politician as a committed Ife son, urging his political contemporaries to emulate the good traits and shun unhealthy rivalry.
Earlier in his address, Senator Omoworare reassured the Ooni and everyone present of the government’s support towards the development of the ancient city.
The former lawmaker said, “I wish to authoritatively confirm to you that in the newly presented Budget by President Muhammadu Buhari, major projects especially road works will be done in Ife. I know of the Mayfair, Lagere, Iremo and Moore roads among others.
“Also, the proposed mini stadium in Erefe, Ile-Ife would be completed within the next six months while the much-talked-about Naval Communication School would be completed soon in Ife.
“These and more are our lofty plans for Ife, all we need is prayers and support from all”.