There seem to be no end to the age long battle between the community development area of Gloryland Estate and the management of Petrocam filling station both in Egbe-Idimu LCDA as the former continues their appeal on the cooperation of the later with his host community.
According to the Chairman of the CDA, Barrister Okwey Ejezie who informed our correspondent that the plea for the cooperation of the company have lasted years before his administration but to no avail, noting that the community has sent several correspondence to the management on the need to have them play the role of a leading business within the community but their requests have met brick walls.
According to Mr Jeffrey a former executive member of the CDA who confirmed that the association had met with the managing director of the company many years back and he promised to participate in the development of the community but till date he has not fulfilled his promises. He further stated that the community spent close to four million Naira to open up the road that serves as the major entrance to the estate which is where the filling station is located and consistently spend close to a million Naira to maintain the road on an annual basis.
He reiterated that the management of Petrocam has vehemently refused to pay her one-off developmental levy of about two Hundred thousand Naira which all landlords withing the estate have paid despite several appeals noting that the said fee is a norm to every community in Lagos State and beyond. He further stated that due to the heavy trucks which are usually stationed on the damaged portion of the road and has resulted to a big ditch right in front of the company’s gate and has resulted to serious threat to residents and road users at any slightest rainfall. In his word “we can’t continue to task ourselves to repair that portion of the road for a business that is not community friendly”.
While Noting that the estate has not benefitted from both the State and local government as regards their roads, rather the residents have taken it upon themselves to provide roads and drainages for its residents at a huge cost just to make life meaningful for them. He also pointed at an on-going filling of other bad portions with rubbles which he said is not cheap.
Barrister Okwey noted that the estate and its residents are peace loving people and as such have provided such a friendly business environment and with maximum patronage for all businesses within the community and that it is expedient of the companies to in turn add value in the form of CSR to the development/maintenance of the community.
Our correspondent’s efforts to meet with the management for clarification proved tough as the Managing Director Mr Patrick Ilo spoke with us via a telephone conversation that he was out of town to Abuja but was quick to claim that both the State and the local government has not been fair to their business owing to their numerous rates, taxes and other charges which he claimed has made it very difficult for the business to break even. He also stated that because of the bad portion he has to close the car wash section of the business.
He further reiterated that the primary factors in consideration of locating an industry in a rural place has been truncated by some of the factors earlier listed and noting that the lack of power alone is bleeding the business as he spends over fifteen million on provision of power for the business.
He further promised to meet with us upon his return to town but this was not coming as he rebuffed our last call to him by saying “I have told you what I want to say”. Meanwhile, the office of the Executive Chairman of Egbe-Idimu LCDA has denied any knowledge of such claims of numerous taxes and rates noting that the council has a statutory laid down levies to collect from every businesses within her jurisdiction and that such rates/taxes can be verified at all levels.
As a community development crusader The Alimosho Mail Newspaper joins to appeal for cooperation of both parties for a more cordial and mutual beneficial relationship.