A FISHING HUB IN LAGOS, NIGERIA
Ifolu village is a community located in Ibeju-Lekki local Government development council in Lagos State. It is a vast fishing hub and home to the “Ijebu” people who have lived in the community for donkey years.
Just like any other day, my colleagues and I went on our usual field research to rural areas around the Ibeju-Lekki axis and as fate will have it, after conducting our field work in “Akodo Ise” and “Okun-Ise” communities along the same locality we stumbled on this magnificent fishing hub it was mind-blowing to see such a wonderful view with a serious economic activity along the waterside, that is what i call “life” most especially in an economic that is undergoing recession.
What caught my attention is the Skate fish that was caught by a fisherman and the enormous joy on the faces of these hard working women who have struggled all day just to have reasonable catch for sale. It was indeed a big and awesome catch that the particular boat became the “mecca” of sought for that moment.
It was not all good news because on interrogating the fishermen and women who are residents of the community they lamented high cost of fuel which has denied them the opportunity to go fishing on the high sea a situation they have never witnessed before which they claim was due to the economic hardship. On the issue of infrastructure deficit, the women said that the government needs to equip their health clinic, give them electricity and repair their roads.
Personally I think the “road” leading to the community needs urgent government intervention because it is “very poor “, despite the fact that it rained three days before our vehicle finds it difficult to pass easily. The residents lamented that during raining period the water level reaches around 3ft above the normal level. I also observed their is no single drainage system along the community roads.
A fishing hub with such a unique vibrancy ideally should have a world-class road network and a storage facility with constant electricity. The fishing industry in that community has a potential of generating huge revenue for the Lagos State government if the government can invest in the community. I am aware the government is devoting attention to the Ibeju-Lekki axis through the creation of “free trade zone” and other infrastructural projects, it is only a matter of time before the people in “Ifolu Village” will see their dreams come true.