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Maiyegun General

Friday, 14 August 2015

Opinion: SOS: Environmental Degradation In My Town, Odogbolu - By Badero Olusola...See Photos of Uren river too

Badero Olusola

...Save the rivers and streams in Odogbolu;

While growing up in Odogbolu, in the 80s, my first understandings of responsibility started from cleaning my personal belongings, to cleaning the house and of course, fetching water from kilometers-long source -- rivers and streams.

Odogbolu is the headquaters of Odogbolu Local Government Area of Ogun State.

Apart from the time of General Oladipo Diya, the Asiwaju of Odogbolu, as the Vice President of Nigeria, when we had regular water supplies in our public taps, people of Odogbolu would fetch their water from the streams for domestic use -- not sure if it was better before I was born, but the picture I painted above is my personal experience.

I am not sure of how many they are in all, but I'll list few major ones here;

In Odogbolu we have three (3) quarters, they are; Odo, Efiyan and Agada. Within these three quarters, we have another sub-quarters with their own Olorituns as the heads and they are; Igbodile, Ikosa, Iloda, Eyin-Edi, Igbepa, Itun-Oke, Ibu, Idena, Itun-Węna, Ipebi (and others I can't remember right now).

Each quarter hosts at least a river in Odogbolu.

In Odo Area, the river there is called Eri-Odo (Odo river). It is small and can't be more than 4 feet deep. It is along the Ita-Odo Ikenne-Ilisan link road. This same stream linked another stream of about 2km away called Ayetutu. That stream is located at the back of Gen. Oladipo Diya's house in Agada.

Agada, Quater; the biggest river in Odogbolu is located in this part of the town. It is called "Uren". It is longer than 2 Olympic size swimming pool. It 10-12ft deep at the extreme end, and about 6ft deep near the bridge. It play host to largest number of visitors during festive seasons. Ileya period is the busiest. From DJs to food vendors to booze merchants, Uren river is a top tourist destination in my town. It is along Odogbolu Aiyepe Road, before the police station at Oke Uren.

We have Eri Ikosa for the Ikosa people. A big river is also at the back of Odogbolu Grammar School in Oko Oke Hill, Efiyan, serving the people of the area. We have Eri Kekere and so on.

What this post is all about is to awaken the minds of every stakeholder in the "Project Odogbolu" and remind them that these monuments are no longer what they used to be.

Their natural existence, valor, and beauty have been altered by environment abusers.

Micro economic businesses are good for our town, so also our is environmental wellbeing. Constructing fish ponds near rivers is not a bad idea as long as the the environment is protected and nature is allowed to enjoy its ambience.

A situation where waste waters are emptied into a already contaminated river, due to your business location, is unacceptable.

The Caretaker committee Chairman in the Local Government, Mr Opanuga should as a matter of necessity take a very good look into the activities of these fish pond businesses located around our rivers in the local government -- especially in Odogbolu.

An environmental sanitation task force should be commissioned to check the day-to-day activities of the businesses. A policy should be formulated that will guide and sanction any abuser of our environment.

We all know the daily harrowing experiences our people goes through in getting drinkable water. Government's efforts in providing clean and drinkable water running from our taps is still very poor and unimpressive. Therefore, the continuous drinking from the river by major part of our people, on Odogbolu, can't be under-emphasized.

Waiting for disaster to happen before acting won't do anyone any good. The epidemic cholera outbreak of last year in Abeokuta is still fresh in our memories. Many of the dead victims died drinking from a contaminated river after road construction had disrupted water supply in the area at the time.

Odogbolu must not experience that too.

Prevention they say, is better than cure. The time to act is now.

Badero Olusola
Maiyegun General,
Glasgow, Scotland UK.

See Photos of fun seekers at Uren river in Odogbolu

The river can take hundred at a go if weed is cleared

More funseekers waiting to take a dive

This is the Ayee Ugborowo's shrine. The Official deity in-
charge of the river

Uren river attracts tens of thousand visitors during Muslim-
festive periods-- mostly first timers

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