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Before Gege River Swallows Another Person, Save Us From Strange, Untimely Deaths, Ibadan Residents Cry To Gov Makinde

As we are entering into the rainy season, the residents of Gege Area of Ibadan South West Local Government Area of Oyo State are living with their hearts in their mouths and they have therefore sent a Save Our Souls message to the state governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde over mysterious killings by Gege River.

Gege River which passes through the main centre of Ibadan locality has a deep ditch behind the popular Gege meat market. The top of this deep hole is covered with refuse and all manners of wastes making unsuspecting passers-by to think it is a dry spot but immediately they step on it they will fall into the deep hole.

Findings reveal that dead body of the victim would come back to the surface three or four days later.

This was the experience of the people of this area as they enthused with sympathy that more than nine people mostly youths have fallen into the ditch and are calling on Governor Makinde to visit the area and do something urgently to avert more deaths.

The residents said the former House of Reps member, Hon. Folake Olunloyo did some work on the river but couldn’t finish before the end of her tenure at the National Assembly while her successors, Hon. Saheed Fijabi and Hon. Stanley Adedeji (Odidiomo) did not continue with the project.

It was gathered that the Chairman of Ibadan West Local Council Development Area (LCDA), Hon. Tajudeen Adigun (Attuu), where the troubled spot falls in, visited the area and promised to call the attention of the state authority to the problem but nothing has been done since his visit.

It was learnt that the day the Chairman visited coincided with the day the river returned the dead body of a young girl that was trapped inside the river three days earlier to the surprise of the Chairman and his team.

When our Reporter visited the spot, a temporary barricade has been done by the community with the use of Red and White Caution Tapes around the spot to call the attention of passers-by to the danger zone of the river.

It was gathered that about nine people had fallen victim, five of which were buried by the river side and their burial grounds are there for all to see.

The residents of the area are appealing to the Oyo State Government to come and help clear the river and remove a dilapidated drainage erected in the middle of the river by a former member of the House of Representatives.

The residents and traders at the Gege market did not rule out the spiritual aspect of this unexpected occurrence. Therefore, they have been making contributions to offer sacrifice through Iya Osun several times to appease Gege River.

Speaking with our Reporter, Miss Akinade Kehinde said she was born in Gege Area and has been living there since.

She said the problem started some years ago, when it was discovered that there was a deep hole inside the river that is as deep as a Storey building. “As young as I am I have witnessed the burial of some victims by the river side”.

“Our appeal goes to His Excellency, Governor Seyi Makinde to please help us remove the dilapidated concrete in the middle of the river, close up the ditch and ensure free flow of water as a first step. Then he should help do proper channelization like it has been done for Ogunpa River”, she said .

Another resident, Alhaja Mujidatu who is in her 60s, pleaded with the Governor to assist the people.

“Our Governor should come to our aid. As a mother it is very sad to be witnessing death of young and agile men in this River.

“We voted for Governor Makinde and now that we have problem, he should reciprocate by helping us out. Let him visit us, we will tell him, what is happening. God bless our Governor”, She said .

Also speaking, Mr Omotosho Saheed said the problem started when drainage was constructed in the middle of the river in 2012.

“Before then, there was no problem. The drainage didn’t cover the width and length of the river hence whenever there was heavy rainfall water dug the front of the drainage and created a deep gully like hole.

This deep hole has become a danger point over the years, claiming so many lives. So we the residents have demarcated the danger zone but most passers by may not understand the reason behind the demarcation especially late in the evening or early in the morning because it was done with cellophane tape.

“Our appeal is to the government to come to our aid. The government should help us do proper channelization”, he pleaded.

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