Imeko as metaphor for Abiodun’s strategy

Imeko, a jewel among the famous towns in Ogun State, is pivotal to the Ogun State governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun’s developmental strategy. And that’s not difficult to process: Abiodun has a project of linking Ogun communities into a cohesive whole and making business and socioeconomic development to sally forth at will. From Atan to Lusada and from Owode to Ilaro, roads are springing up at will.

Typically, Abiodun is not one window-dress of the state capital and major towns while treating the rest of the state as mere statistics for pontificating about future plans. And as watchers of the Ogun scenario are beginning to acknowledge, danger lurks when you adopt the strategy of Abiodun’s predecessors and build bridges that lead to nowhere in Abeokuta, Ijebu Ode and Sagamu, while abandoning the vast nexus of people that live in the border communities of the Ogun State to their fate.

The people that live in Imeko, Afon, Ilara, Okeagbede, Moriwi, Owode, Obada, Iwoye-Ketu, Okuta, Atapele, Idofa, among others, deserve to feel government presence just like anyone else. Moreover, even in Abeokuta, life is becoming a thrill as the government opens up communities tactically cut off from the heart of the city through bad roads and failed promises. Go to Kemta, go to Olomore and the message is the same: there must be development beyond major roads, and without needless demolition of properties and heart attacks.

If the Celestial Church of Christ’s (CCC) capital city of Imeko came alive recently, it was by sheer design. Imeko is a tourist destination treated for years like a mere fable, its agricultural potential untapped. Feigning concern for the people, the immediate past administration conducted fanciful ground-breaking ceremonies that raised their hope, then vanished into thin air. Not Dapo Abiodun, who on September 14 inaugurated the 2.4km Oke-Ola road and brought tears of joy to many faces.

Comparatively, the project looks small, but those in the know feel differently. And here’s why: this was the first time asphalt had touched ground in the entire council area in more than 15 years. And guess which government last repaired the road? The Sani Abacha government.

Over to the Onimeko of Imeko, Oba Benjamin Olanite said: “The road was opened up in 1952. It started from Ilaro and passed through many towns before it got to Imeko and led to Oyo State. Looking at the neglect that we have suffered, it seems glory had departed this area after the exit of the colonial administration.

But with Dapo Abiodun, we have seen the signal that the glory is returning and this road project is the beginning of more good things to come. Since the Late General Sani Abacha repaired the road that leads to Imeko, this is the only governor that has constructed any road in Imeko.”




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