We need infrastructure not structures

I passed through a street in Lagos and it was as though I was in a pool of mackerel geisha fish- It was full of people choked together. At my side I saw wasted oranges and banana heeled over themselves as a woman sat besides roasting corn, I salivated for corn but it quenched because of the sight of refuse. Yes! refuse in this era of growth.

At the other side of the road I saw a large structure; it looked like a bridge, a house and a tower. It looked like many things, the workers were very busy and serious with the work as they also grinned at their take home after the project. To my left, I saw a road recently constructed now pot holed and looking stressed, rough and old. I wasn’t surprise because I witnessed the construction from the beginning; it was poorly constructed, and I envisaged the aftermath.

The issue is that they probably spent millions of naira on just one project and expect hails from the people. I am not against the government, but all I say is, “we need infrastructure not structures”.

We are tired of seeing roads, gutters, bridges, new corps, and new laws that don’t matter to lives but to pockets of a select few. All we need are detailed infrastructure that will check these physical structures everywhere. We need highly intelligent and committed people to man these infrastructure.

It is not enough to build or create policies; supervision matters. Are they executing properly, are they constructing with the right materials, and are they built professionally to curb disasters?

Some months ago, a road direction board fell on a moving commercial bus along Cele express road and killed many, leaving several injured. If only this board was properly fixed the first time, and constantly maintained, such disaster would have been averted.

It is quite amazing to see that many sing praises of terminals built and the retched construction of roads. These projects don’t put food on the table, it doesn’t increase the income and of living of the people.

Our money is wasted on bodies that are not necessarily needed and a host of others who only collect bribes from people, neglecting their core objective; service to humanity. In Lagos, we have/had cleaner Lagos, LASTMA, Lagos state neighborhood corps. These are failed projects not well managed and structured- the government needs to look into it or dissolve all government bodies that are actually not living up to expectation.

It takes the executive to do the supervision for total accountability not partial. Complaints may arise, “it is going to be too much work”, then find out how the outside world leaders do it and do same, create strategy that will work well in the unique space of Nigeria because the almighty metropolitan state of the nation needs a change and cannot afford to slack in this era and time. If this happens, then other states will follow.

Another arising question is, “do we need these structures”, and they say, ” it will help the state’s livelihood “, but nothing is done to find out what the people really want.

It is said that we practice democracy, but I doubt its feasibility here. Democracy is the government of the people, for the people and by the people. Then if this is missing, I dare say that this government should stop for a while and review its manifesto and then request for a development communication expert, to be able to produce a more efficient government which is really for the people and not for praises and pockets.

Chineye Anichebe,
Gaduwa Estate, Abuja
[email protected]
+234 703 517 0927