The Lagos State governor, Babatunde Fashola, on Monday voiced his concern over the oil spillage in Baruwa area of Alimosho Local Government Area and other parts of the state.
Mr. Fashola, who complained to members of the Federal House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream), said that the situation has led to the outbreak of various diseases.
He blamed the problem on the wrong location of petroleum infrastructure, saying the spillage is capable of wiping out communities in the affected areas if not checked.
The governor said that while the federal government has the power to regulate the petroleum sector, the state government has the right to decide where petroleum infrastructure should be located.
Mr. Fashola urged the committee to visit the affected areas in order to have first-hand information on the enormity of the problem. He said it has also affected the socio-economic lives of residents.
“We are sowing seed of poor health for the future. These things are toxic, they create environmental difficulties, and they create breathing and respiratory disorder,” Mr. Fashola said.
The Lagos State governor said that in Baruwa community of Alimosho Local government, the water had been deeply polluted by petrol.
“There is a place, called Baruwa in Alimosho Local government I want you to visit. I think you should visit Ilado and other communities, just take a deep in their water, it is petrol.
“If you dig, you will see petrol. So, we are seeing all sorts of skin diseases, cancer emerging in these areas,” the governor said.
Mr. Fashola also urged the lawmakers to see the frequent cases of petroleum-related accidents, especially those caused by petroleum trucks.
He said there is the need to define a specification for vehicles conveying petroleum products in the country, adding that some accidents happened as a result of poor conditions of trucks.
The Lagos State governor commended the House of Representatives for living up to expectation of Nigerians but said that there was still more to do to improve the quality of legislative sessions.
Dakuku Peterside, the Chairman of the committee, said Lagos is important to the petroleum industry as it hosts a very important number of industries critical to infrastructure.
Mr. Peterside said the house is aware of the challenges faced by the state as host of petroleum s infrastructure and pledged that the committee would do all it could to address the problems.
The committee was in the state to inspect some petroleum infrastructure as part of its oversight functions.