Give Iju/Itaogbolu LCDA

Give Iju/Itaogbolu LCDA

By Ayodele Fagbohun
A cross section of Iju/Itaogbolu communities in Akure North Local Government Area of Ondo State in search for identity and self determination to actively participate in the affairs of their communities are demanding for the creation of a Local Council Development Area (LCDA) out of the unwieldy local government.

Aside from suffering in silence for gross marginalization and criminal neglect, Iju/Itaogbolu are tired or bored and reject being styled with nebulous name or cardinal points like Akure North. Whereas the area can be called and be so identified with a unique name to project people’s identity and reflect their proud and cherished cultural background like their close neighbours and counterparts in Ifedore and Idanre Local Government areas.

Iju/Itaogbolu, a geo-political unit in the defunct Akure Local Government endowed with appreciable contiguous, viable and enjoy good neighbourliness to constitute a separate Local Council Development Area. The demilitation of constituencies can be strictly followed to assist and assure the government that the proposed Iju/Itaogbolu LCDA will be an asset to be fully utilized to promote good governance in the area.

Besides, the old Iju/Itaogbolu local council excised from the octopus Akure District Council in the pre-independence era to the First Republic was workable experiment in turning around the fortunes of the otherwise rustic rural populace. The area then witnessed peace and some modicum of infrastructural development embarked upon and thoroughly supervised by the council’s senior officials and administrators.

Suffice to say that the life span of Iju/Itaogbolu was abruptly terminated out of political acrimony in the cross fire emanated from political upheavals and turmoil that befell and put paid to the government of Western Region. It remains for me to add that the council made desired political re-awakening, tremendous positive impact on the lives of the people in the area that the former unanimously call for the re-introduction of the local council, as constituted.

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At this juncture, I beg to make some pertinent remarks that can throw light to the issue at stake. In the days of yore, Iju/Itaogbolu were dogged allies to Akure Municipal Council always at her beck and call in the payment of annual tributes to the Deji, the paramount ruler and the prescribed authority of Akure kingdom.

The Deji, as the custom and tradition, clothed with the aura and performed rites of coronation and investiture on the Okiti and Elewe later change to the Ogbolu respectively the title heads and monarchs of Iju/Itaogbolu communities. The obedience to the rules, a dictates and ordinances of Deji of Akure without question persisted through the modern trends in politics until government’s intervention which introduced some far reaching reforms in the chief’s law and duly recognized the monarchs of Iju/Itaogbolu as the prescribed authorities in their respective domains. This was what obtained throughout the Western Nigeria.

For instance, the Akure municipal council, was very vast, extensive and far flung in area of jurisdiction and sphere of influence thereby making the administration so unwieldy and unmanageable for lack of dearth or requisite personnels or both. Some major towns in the municipal council, Ilara, Igbara-Oke, Ijare and the adjoining villages and farmsteads asserted their independence, broke away to constitute a local government council proudly named Ifedore.

Iju/Itaogbolu still remain in the strait jacket as underdog in Akure local government until recently when General Sani Abacha’s military junta in 1996 reluctantly carved out Iju/Itaogbolu and contemptuously lumped it with other satellite villages and farmsteads in Akure and dubbed it Akure North without taking any consultations with the people of Iju/Itaogbolu. That is the bane of military incursion in the nation’s politics.

The people in the rural areas are law abiding citizens who pay their taxes regularly and always very loyal to the government. But in return, they are denied enjoyment of public utilities like pipe-borne water, electricity supply, good access feeders’ roads, amongst others. Most of what they enjoy are only derived through the ‘sweat of their brow’ in form of self help projects.

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It is very disgusting that it is these rural folks that are invariably called upon to exercise their civic responsibility during general elections and subsequently exploited by unscrupulous politics without corresponding improvement on their welfare and well being in the scheme of things.

It is widely believed that a vast majority of the nation’s population live in the countryside of the country. This being so, social justice and equity dictate that a local government machinery should be put in place to register the presence of the federal government and to afford the people in the rural areas the chance to organise and run their affairs in the best tradition and practices of the communities within the framework of local government administration.

The people are prepared to toil very hard for the success of the LCDA as they are well aware of the various laudable socio-economic, cultural and political benefits to be derived there from which space will not allow me to expatiate.

The fears earlier expressed by the Federal Government that additional local governments would increase the federal constituencies and not augur well for healthy financial well being of the nation are utterly misplaced and need not be entertained. Funds which will be expended on additional local government, the concomitant sacrifices for the sustenance of democracy is fund and efforts judiciously and well utilized to promote social harmony, good government and political stability in the country.

The unspeakable and criminal neglect of the rural areas by government over the years will continue to adversely affect the rapid development of the whole nation if proactive and prompt measures are not taken to address the need for additional local government structures towards complementing the efforts of state governments and stem the rural/urban drift. Despite the ambitious efforts of the federal government to open up the rural areas, darkness still envelopes and rules the grassroots in terms of adequate social amenities to make life descent, meaningful, worth living and to arrest the waves of youth unrest, kidnapping and banditry.

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The living standard of the people is quite sub-human not to talk of below the poverty line. It is ironic that the rural areas where food production is expected to be on the increase owing to large tracts of virgin land yearning for arable farming, we suffer grim food shortages and most inhabitants practically live on the verge of starvation.

One school of thought often jumps up gleefully to pass a verdict of laziness on the people to farm vigorously which is responsible for the extreme hunger and malnutrition apparent in the rural areas as most able bodied men have deserted the area for life of ease and comfort in any of the urban areas. Well said. But a second thought should orientate the conceptions of the people in this school that in this modern and jet age the Americans, for instance, have succeeded to conquer and completely transform their environment to the equivalent of paradise on earth.

Even at the same period, the same Americans are making strenuous efforts on how life can thrive in space. So no well educated African, no matter his place of abode, will stoop low to hang hoe on his back, hold cutlass and henceforth proceed to farm. That belongs to the antediluvian age!

Time to redress all the anomalies that stall local governments as complementary tier to the state is now! All hands must be on deck to return local government to its pristine age of taking absolute control and care of the neglected rural life.

Fagbohun, a veteran journalist writes from Iju/Itaogbolu

Give Iju/Itaogbolu LCDA

Tithe: Different strokes for different people


  1. Amen Rachael
    21st Aug 2022 Reply

    Hello, I am Amen Raychael. An active Corp member serving at Iju/ITAOGBOLU.

    i’m researching on the community to enhance my PERSONAL community development SERVICE coming forth 17th OF September.

    I would love to connect with YOU, please.


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