…demand relocation, review of regulations
Following the explosion that occurred at Dejo Oyelese Street in Old Bodija, last week, residents of Kolapo Ishola Estate, Ibadan, have raised the alarm over what they term ‘impending danger’ from indiscriminate siting of gas stations within their communities.
The residents are demanding an immediate relocation of the gas stations, just as they called on the relevant regulatory agency and Oyo State government to review laws guiding the siting of gas stations.
The residents said their demands became necessary to avert a disaster, such as the explosion in Ibadan that led to the loss of lives and properties at Bodija Estate.
Recall that an explosion rocked part of Bodija Estate on Tuesday, January 16, which led to the loss of five lives, 77 injured, destruction of 58 houses, and several vehicles.
Olalekan Thanni and Jimi Bolusere, chairman, Kolapo Ishola GRA, and vice chairman, Carlton Gate Residents Association, respectively, who spoke with journalists at the weekend, said indiscriminate siting of gas and petrol stations in the communities posed a danger due to its closeness to schools, churches, and residences.
He described the issue as a time bomb waiting to explode, if not curtailed, stating that the Bodija incident has become an eye-opener for them.
We are acting on Governor Seyi Makinde’s advice which says ‘If you see something, say something.’ After extensive debate of imminent danger, particularly about the unfortunate incident last Tuesday at Bodija, we are seeing something, we are now saying something, and we expect the authority to do something.”
However, in a communique issued at the end of the meeting of the landlords of the areas, they stated that “In light of the recent event that took lives and properties of Bodija residents, we have decided to highlight an impending danger with potential more devastating impact if not urgently addressed.
“Within a distance of less than one kilometre, we have numerous gas plants and fuel stations near schools, churches and residential communities, this is a time bomb.
“Specifically, we have a gas tank farm which is less than five kilometres from Valencial School, and opposite Mercy Land fuel station. This gas tank farm has a mechanic village close by where welding activities can ignite devastating explosions.
“After our meeting, we have reached the following decisions, we request for review of approval given to the gas plants, gas farm, and fuel stations within our corridor.
“We specifically call on the government to address the gas tank farm operated by Gasland near Valencia School, various churches and numerous residential communities along the corridor.”