Residents and shop owners along Magboro Road in the Obafemi Owode Local Government Area of Ogun State have complained of dust after the untarred section of the road was graded to allow easy vehicular movement.
Our correspondent gathered that the tarred part of the road began from Magboro bus stop and ended at Cele bus stop while the rest of the road had remained untarred for years all the way down to Makogi area.
According to a resident, Bayo Adekale, the untarred road always gets graded with a caterpillar every end of the year, thereby leaving behind a dusty environment.
“Once it’s October or November, the road gets graded with a caterpillar. Though, the effort enables smooth movement of vehicles, it leaves those of us living along the untarred part of the road battling with dust. As you can see, the mosquito nets and the roofs of houses along the road are dusty,” he lamented.
A trader, simply identified as Iya Bola, said they faced the situation every year, especially during harmattan period when the weather is very dry.
“We are always left to inhale dust everyday. This is what we face every end of the year when the harmattan season arrives. Our wares also get dusty,” she said.
A landlord in the area, Lanre Taiwo, begged for government intervention, saying, “If government can complete the tarring of the road, this situation won’t persist.”
When contacted, an health expert, Dr Bamidele Iwalokun, revealed what the residents inhaling the dust from the road could be exposing themselves to.
He said, “The implication of inhaling dust is numerous. I think the first thing is that it affects the ciliary movement of the nasal airways. It could eventually get blocked, leading to consequences like respiratory discomfort. It could also cause silicosis, emphysema and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. It’s a factor for many other diseases and as a matter of fact, it affects all age groups and gender. So, it’s a respiratory discomfort that metamorphoses into other diseases. For people with asthma, it aggravates their asthma attacks. Dust can also promote infection by viruses, infection by bacteria and so on. It also promotes nasal colonisation with respiratory pathogens like streptococcus pneumoniae that are commensal but will become opportunistic pathogens. The implications are numerous and not ideal for people trading along the streets and for those with houses around the area.”
Iwalokun added that the road not being tarred prevented Nigeria from achieving Social Developmental Goal Three which involves good health and well-being.
Effort to reach the Ogun State Commissioner for Works, Ade Akinsanya, proved abortive as calls and a message sent to his phone were not responded to.