Special Adviser to the governor of Osun State, Gboyega Oyetola on Works and Transport, Engr. Hussein Olatoke Olaniyan, has said the administration is building infrastructure for the future, bearing in mind the place of good infrastructure in economic development.
Olaniyan who spoke in this interview with OGUNTUYI SUNDAY in Oshogbo, the state capital, said the Olaiya flyover is one of many to come on stream in the state, all of which he said, are aimed at boosting the economy of the state by improving ease of movement.
The Olaiya flyover will soon commence. There has been questions about the rationality of the project, with respect to whether it will have economic impact..?
All over the world the economic activities are enhanced by good transportation system. People have to move from one place to another. When ease of movement is so enhanced, it boosts the economy of the area. There are other means of transportation, but the one we are talking about now is vehicle movement. There is an adage that says, “time is money.” If it takes one a day to travel from one point to another, apparently, that day is wasted. But if it takes an hour to cover the same distance, you can then use the rest of the time to pursue other productive activities.
Globally, intersections are often hubs of different activities, which sort of creates traffic. So, the essence of the flyover is to help free up traffic. The idea is to enable vehicles from MDS, Jaleyemi, Alekuwodo off to Oke Fia and the other way round, to move from one point way to another to help people get to there destination on time. Don’t forget that we are also planning ahead.
We have seen that often time is wasted when one vehicle has to wait for another to pass so it can have right of passage. This creating a flyover in that intersection will mean that a vehicle moving from Ogo Oluwa to MDS will not have to wait for another as is currently the case. The flyover will be of benefit also because workers would get to their places of work as fast as possible, and traders will get to their place of business as fast as possible, this will eliminate time wastage.
But even more important, is the reduction of accidents and the resultant loss of lives. You and I know that we have this culture of haste in our society. At every point, people are in a hurry. Commuters are impatient, everyone wants to get out of the junction at the same time, and sometimes it causes congestion and accidents. Again, people hardly obey traffic signal light, we have experienced many crisis in that junction and government is not happy with that situation. So, the idea is to reduce the chaos to the barest minimum, if not eliminate it completely.
Again, as I hinted earlier, we are also thinking ahead. Our population is growing. You can compare the situation 10 years ago with what is obtainable now. Deep thinkers think about the future. The way Osun state was 10 years ago is not the way it is now. And the way it is now is not the way it will be in 10 years to come. So, genuine leader must build for the future.
We won’t be building flyover at only Olaiya junction. We still have some other places in mind; places where there is often heavy traffic like Oke Fia, Old Garage and some other points. The governor has it in mind to improve traffic flow in those areas.
Our idea is to build lasting infrastructure, and improve the state of our dear state. Before now, Osogbo the state capital was like a local government headquater. But you can see now that things are changing. If you take a census of hotels in Osogbo now, you will see that people travel from far to come and have good time here. Many are also coming to do business here. That’s some of the benefits of having good infrastructure.
We will continue to do more to ensure that the economy of our state continues to improve.
What measures is the government putting in place to ensure that hawkers who earn their living hawking at Olaiya Junction, are able to put food on their table during and after construction?
The governor of the state of Osun, Mr. Adegboyega Oyetola does not want any of his citizens to suffer. Hence, hawking should not be taken as a legitimate source of income. This is because in the process of hawking, hawkers put their lives in danger. We should not be segmental about things, hawking is a very dangerous trade. You are always in traffic and sometimes accidents may occur. It’s the reality of life.
Let the hawkers get themselves organized set up trading posts or shops. That way, they won’t be exposed to danger. Let’s all join hands and educate our people on the dangers of street hawking.
When the present administration came into power, many people were wondering how His Excellency would be able to stir the ship of the state, but we all know the situation he met the state in terms of finances, but to the glory of God, His Excellency has been able to navigate the ocean the for two years, going to three years now. And he has been embarking on many projects. On top of that, he has never reneged the salary payment. He has been doing projects in education sector, agriculture and many other areas.
Some have continued to how he is able to do the things he is doing. The answer to that is that His Excellency is such an endowed human being who is very prudent in resource management. He is somebody that will not embark on any project if he is not sure of how to complete it. Ian assure the people of Osun state that the administration of Governor Oyetola will not leave any project abandoned. And while he is at it, he will not let other aspects of government to suffer. Salary will always be paid as and when due. He has been doing this from day one. He has also paid arrears of retirees.
It bears restating that the secret behind it is that he is a good resources manager. He’s not wasteful, he will not waste resources of Osun state on unnecessary flamboyance, that is the secret. Before he embarks on project, he will plan it critically and follow it to the root. We assured the people of Osun that Oyetola will not let them down.
There are some market on the major road in Osogbo that are prone to accidents. What is the government doing to salvage the situation?
Government has created markets for the people of the state, and all the facilities have been put in place in these markets. However, to our surprise, our people still abandon their shops and still got to the roadsides. Some have turned deaf hear to the government instructions and directive. But we are in democracy, not military government. Our style is to persuade people with the rule and regulations
Everything have been put in place in Ayegbaju Market and it still beats my imagination that people are not going there. But we still have to persuade them. Now that we are constructing the flyover, some of them have to relocate and this will be an opportunity to go back to their shops
What would be your advise to the people of the state?
My advise is simple, let’s join hands with the present administration in lifting the state high. Let us all see the development of our dear state as a collective responsibility. It’s our state, if we don’t develop it, no one will develop it for us.