The news of the commencement of any local community project that is being tracked by the Tracka team is always accepted with great joy. First, it is a testimony that our work is changing things, one community at a time. Second, it will also serve the beneficiary community. So, in December 2017, we rejoiced when we heard that the erosion control project at Ogere Remo had commenced at Odo Aro market. The road that linked the community and the market had been destroyed by erosion, following years of neglect. It was the shortest and most deplorable route to the market.
Tracka started monitoring the project in 2017, by visiting and educating the community. The budget line for the project read that erosion/flood control measures would be put in place for a 600m stretch in Ikenne Local Government, Ogun East Senatorial District. This was followed by letters to Senator Buruji Kashamu, the senate representative of the constituency. The road was important to the residents, for many it gave them access to their daily bread; now, they lost money and time because they had to pass through a longer route.
Several civil society organizations were also instrumental to the work at Ogere Remo. They were the mediators that settled disputes between the site managers, local government executives and community members. The site engineer alleged that the local government sent delegates to the construction site to demand certain illegal entitlement at their office for the work to continue. More so, the community members also demanded a job of better quality from the contractor and threatened to stop the work. In the midst of these, the Tracka team encouraged peace among the warring parties. The case was taken to the king who later encouraged the contractor to proceed but ensures to deliver a quality job.
The project commenced in December 2017 but however stopped midway due to the heavy downpour that was claimed to have destroyed an entire day’s job. It took another month for work to resume on the site. The reason for the stoppage remains unknown. Work proceeded once again to an extent.
Moreover, the work has only been done in parts: all the drainage slabs are yet to be replaced in their rightful positions, thereby making it impossible for the aged to use the road. Even the slab which is supposed to link the project location to the main road is yet to be fixed. More so, grading the said area would have given more credence to the work done and further given room for vehicular activities on the road.
The residents of the area believe that the project when completed, will combat flooding. However, the good work done could have been more laudable if the above mentioned yet-unattended-to issues are prioritized. Tracka will continue its advocacy until the young and the old in Ogere Remo can pass that road without fear of injury.