Lagos Delegation Entices Community To Accept Building Of ‘Petrol Station Owned By Assembly Speaker, Obasa, Close To Residential Houses’

The residents, who had written petitions to the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development in 2018 and 2019, argued that the filling station would pose safety and health threats to the community....READ FULL ARTICLE

The Lagos State government through some delegates has met with residents of Irawo Osan, Omotayo and Idowu Layemo in the Ketu-Alapere area of the state to entice them to accept the building of a petrol station in their community.

Some delegates sent by the state government met with residents of the community in a continuous bid to lure them to accept the building of a filling station close to residential houses.

The delegates, who were led by the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Dr. Oluyinka Olumide, met with the residents at an emergency meeting arranged to discuss with stakeholders of the community.

Other members of the delegation were top officials of the State Ministry for Physical Planning and Urban Development.

SaharaReporters in October 2023 reported how the residents objected to the building of the petrol station.

The residents, who had written petitions to the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development in 2018 and 2019, argued that the filling station would pose safety and health threats to the community.

According to them, there is already a gas station and two petrol stations in the community.

SaharaReporters gathered that the project was started by a member of the State House of Assembly representing Shomolu Constituency 1, Rotimi Olowo, but was stiffly resisted by the residents.

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It was however reportedly sold to the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa.

In their ongoing bid to convince the residents to permit the construction despite an ongoing court case, the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development asked the residents to state whatever they wanted for the petrol station to be situated in the intended site.

A source at the meeting quoted him as saying, “I am here as the commissioner representing the ministry. What are the things we can do to bring both parties to a middle point? There are also benefits.

“If it is something that can be allowed, what community benefits are we looking at? What other things should be put in place, we can demand from them. What are the things you want them to consider, whether to build a mini-mart or fix street lights? My request is that, let us know what we can put in place and request.”

The commissioner also informed the residents that the state’s physical planning was not aware of existing petrol stations in the area as they were not approved, indicating that the Speaker’s petrol station would be approved.

“Do you know that those stations you are talking about don’t have approval? If somebody has a station existing and it doesn’t have approval, that means it is not reflected in our plan.

“Applying the law means we will demolish them except they come forward to quickly rectify. The gas station there does not have approval.

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“In terms of viability for the station here, it is okay to be approved as a station,” he was quoted to have added.

SaharaReporters learnt the residents are still adamant in their demand, stressing that having another filling station in the area will not only contravene the environmental, urban and town planning laws of the state but also pose a threat to the community.

SaharaReporters in October 2023 reported that Lekan Seriki, who is the son of Alhaji Seriki, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who resides in the neighbourhood with his father, also kicked against the construction saying, “The matter should be laid to rest as it contravenes the Urban and Town Planning Law and our decision is binding.”

“There are filling stations around here already. The project site is situated between Doyin Omololu and Irawo Osan Street. There is a gas plant on Doyin Omololu with just a building (car wash) between it and the gas plant.

“There is a G&G fuel station five buildings before the proposed site. There is another fuel station just after Biola bus stop which also has a gas plant some 100 meters away from it,” one of the residents said.

Another resident urged Obasa to listen to the people and not impose the construction of the filling station on the community.

“It can be used for a shopping mall or a banking hall and it can also be used for some other things. This is our main point. There are filling stations around, citing another filling station here is dangerous for the people in a situation of a fire accident,” he said.

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The residents pointed out that based on the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) guidelines, 2015, for approval to construct and operate petrol stations, the total number of petrol stations expected to be within a two-kilomentre stretch on both sides of the road should not be more than four including the one under consideration; and the distance between an existing station and the proposed one should not be less than 400 meters.

The residents had in one of their petitions noted: “The proposed filling station is right beside a residential building that already has a gas retail station behind it. In addition, there are already two existing petrol filling stations within one hundred and twenty (120) metres radius of each other between Biola Bus Stop and around Oba Nle Aro bus stop on the same Demurin road where the prospective one is sought to be built.

“We know, by consultation with experts, that two filling stations are never lawfully allowed within less than one hundred (100) metres of each other in a residential area.

“The prospective entrepreneur wishes in contravention of the law and regulation to proceed with the gravely risky filling station construction on a property abutting a single-lane road dovetailing into our three streets.”

When contacted for comments on the issue, the Speaker, Obasa did not answer calls made to his phone number.

He also did not reply to a message sent to his mobile phone....READ FULL ARTICLE

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