Opinion: Visionscape’s Albatross – The Dirty Lagos

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By Dotun Hassan (Esq)

In Lagos State today one cannot phantom how much hips of stench of smelly cabbages, toxified with dirty atmosphere that stears one in the face everwhere you turned to, and this recalcitrants audacity has recently taken over and ravaged the entire Landscape by Visionscape.

It is highly disheartening and embarrassing to see how the supposedly once pride ‘mega city’ turned into ‘dirty city’, all within three years, as a result of lack of concise and conscious people oriented governance by the Akinwunmi Ambode led government of Lagos state, through the direct insensitive and power feast tussles(though pretentiously resolved) going on between the Pro-Ambode Visionscape and Pro-PSP/LAWMA operators, whose debacles of evil motives has degraded the once known cleanest city in Nigeria, after a cantankerous longwork out of the woods of a then dirty Lagos during pre-BRF era, but this became a paradigm shift led by the former MD of LAWMA, Mr Ola Oresanya, an erudite and highly well informed waste management expert, yet unforgivingly, he was thrown out of office for reasons best known to the current administration, only to resurrect the old wounds of Lagos dirts back to the history archives.

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One must be thrown aback by this recent unbecoming menace that brazenly flungs open display of arrogance and frontal ineptitude by the premeditated privately smuggled waste management company under a protracted and most confused undercover operation under the aegis of ‘cleaner Lagos initiative’ a.k.a Visionscape, wherein the best managed and well experienced private operators where short changed and thrown out of business due to greed and penchant for power.

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For it is most absurd to see the legal attrition and wanton display of crudity of inexperienced and mindless shenanigans by the current administration to thwart the laudable achievements of Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, the immediate former Governor of the Center of Excellence and current Federal Minister of Power, Works and Housing, wherein in the bid to throw away the bad baby with the bad waters led to this inglorious waterloo.

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Also, this predicated on the ill approach by the state government who has continually finds itself in serial self defense of simultaneous oppressive and pervasive anti-masses policies and over burdensome taxes ranging from the astronomical Lekki Toll gate increased fares to the most regretful Land Use Charge promulgated Gestapo styled orders; empowering Alfa Beta as the lifetime conductor and conduit of corruption and tribulations in Lagos state, to the Visionscape overnight robbery of the use of state owned infrastructures and financing to fester its inexperience myths.

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Similarly, wherein a designed project by the World bank and international donor agencies was diverted to establish this cruel initiative.

We expected it to consolidate and toll the previous administration’s positive drive, which instead of throwing out of business the PSP operators away due to their multiple deadlocks and hydra-headed challenges of lack of good compactor trucks and other facilities, like abandonedly uncleared loans and unbearable debt burden obtained from various commercial banks then, the BRF’s government then took a bold step to revamp and ameliorate the waste management operations and synergy by buying back and paying off loans and giving brand new Tata trucks to all operators on installment payments, while also strengthening its frontiers of massive operational investments by adding more to its LAWMA operations workforce with provisions of brand new and various sizes of vehicles and amenities, supportive street sweepers system via free buses and highly encouraging allowances and incentives to mention a few, this inevitably brought Lagos to a lime light of a progressive, cleaner and most sought after mega city.

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This nailed the gasket and buried hips of stenches, blockage of drainage system and built a robust and healthy lifestyle in Lagos state, compared to now, which is the exact opposite of what we used to be.

This unending scenarios and trademarks of errors are the same almost in every parts of “Eko”, from median hips to roadside bombs of smelling wastes, to incriminate dumping of refuse everywhere you go, while most points and street junctions have been transformed into mini and massive dump sites, depending the areas ranging from lowbrow to highbrow: Mushin, Ikorodu, Agege, Magodo, Victoria island, VGC, Eti-osa, Ajah, Badore, Lagos island, even precinct of the seat of government house at Alausa secretariat by the central mosque is not left out and other conspicuous locations of dearths.

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It is highly injurious and dangerous to the health to see how lagosians are made to suffer under this administration which care less about the staple welfare of her citizens.

Regrettably, I believe much is expected from a state that generates monthly over 70Billion naira of IGR cum Federal government allocations and other privately owned investments opportunities, with countless numbers of streams of incomes to now reduce itself to a lame duck.

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We implore the state to look beyond its unproductive and uncharitable prides, to aggressively move to resolve and stem the growing tides of huge embarrassments, and urgently ameliorate the situation by stepping down from her high Trojan horse and frontally engaging all stakeholders to assist and resuscitate the dying ‘king of the jungle’ (Lagos) back to life.

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Beyond politics, Lagos deserves the best, for a healthy society produces wealthy people ….

To whom much is given much is expected.

The opinion expressed in the above article is that of the guest writer and not The New Diplomat’s

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