Oyo State Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde, on Friday, announced palliatives to cushion the effects of fuel subsidy removal on the citizens as he flagged off the dualisation of the 8.3km Akobo-Ojurin-Odogbo Barracks-Olorunda-Abaa junction Road.
The Governor, in his speech at the flag off, said: “We know that things are getting harder because the subsidy on PMS has been removed and this has made transportation cost increase further. Well, I have already set up a committee to look into what we can do about increasing civil servants’ salaries but I know that everyone in Oyo State is not a civil servant. So, we have decided to deploy more Omituntun buses to ease the transportation worries. I have also directed that there should be no increase in the fare paid on these buses.
“Also, school children and our senior citizens will board these buses at half-price. We will continue to look into other ways of easing the burdens.”
On the road project, the Governor said: “We are here today for the flag-off of the dualization of the 8.3km Akobo-Ojurin-Odogbo Barracks-Olorunda-Abaa junction Road. This road is vital to the people of Lagelu Local Government Area as it connects Akobo to Olorunda Abaa and it will bring development to this axis.”
Governor Makinde said the flag off was the fulfillment of a promise he made to the people of the area during his campaign.
He said, “Today, we are keeping our promise by flagging off the construction. You can see that the work has already started. The equipment is here and the contractor has promised that it will be completed in 12 months. From today, we are counting 12 months. We have paid 30 per cent to the contractor and we expect that the work will progress.
“I had wanted to just fix the road as a single lane but I know that with the rate at which this axis is developing, dualizing the road is the best. So, that was how we decided to bite the bullet and dualize it once and for all.”
The Governor asked for the cooperation of the people since the dualisation of the road would necessarily result in some houses having to give way to the road. He, however, promised that compensation to affected people would be prompt.
He later named the road after Chief Nyesom Wike, immediate past Governor of Rivers State.
Engr Makinde also seized the occasion to talk about the Light-Up Oyo project.
He said, “Let me also use this opportunity to update you on the Light-Up Oyo project. We know this project is one of the ways we are ensuring economic security for our people because when the lights are on, our people are able to stay outside longer and carry out economic activities. As promised, we carried out the audit and we have reached an alignment with the contractors. So, I assure you that in the next two to three weeks, all the lights will be back on and then we will continue to expand the project.”