The Lagos State House of Assembly Committee on Physical Planning and Urban Development is investigating a petition written by the Parents-Teachers Association (PTA) of MD Nursery and Primary School on Olaniyi Street, New Oko-Oba in Ojokoro Local Council Development Area of Lagos State on the citing of a petrol station close to the school.
The PTA in their petition alleged that the construction of the petrol station beside the school poses serious security, health and environmental hazards to the lives of the over 400 pupils and staff of the school while its physical structure in being threatened.
Spokesperson for the PTA, Mr. Peter Osuere while making their grievances known to the committee members stated that “After considering the health hazards the petrol station could bring to the students, the parents unanimously concluded that the issue be brought to the attention of the House to intervene and rescue the children whose lives are being endangered”.
He further stated that a parent, Mr. Ferdinand, whose child is asthmatic urged for quick intervention because the fume of the fuel could trigger a lot of respiratory problems in the pupil. He added that the parents have emphasized their conviction that the building of the petrol station could not have been approved by the government since the area is fully residential.
However, the Permanent Secretary in the state Ministry of Physical Planning, Mrs. Dapo Thomas affirmed that the owner of the filling station got an approval from the state government before the commencement of the filling station.
The Chairman of the Committee, Hon. David Setonji observed special reservation on the siting of the petrol station close to the school. He however, implored the representatives of the PTA to bring the necessary documents to prove that the school’s location was approved by the government and to ascertain if the school was registered by the state Ministry of Education as an educational facility.
Hon. Abiodun Tobun in his submission opined that “as much as the lawmakers are voted to protect the interests of the citizenry, it is a must to ensure that they do not go beyond the ambience of the law’’.
However Hon. Tunde Braimoh posited that notwithstanding the closeness of the filling station to the school, it should not create any worry as such filling station in advanced countries do have hotels and other relaxation centres, without impeding on the health of any individual, but rather promote commerce and trade.
He enjoined a better understanding between neighbours in the state to foster harmonious co-existence.
The committee adjourned for a week in order to invite input from other agencies of government that were mentioned during deliberation and also for the school to come up with their approval from the state Ministry of Education.