Taiwo,  a volunteer who fills portholes in Osogbo hit  by reckless driver

By Owolabi Labode 

Most of  Osogbo residents, especially motorists,  who ply Dada Estate axis of the metropolis will be familiar with  middle-age man, dark,  and of average height,  who always fill several potholes in the capital area of the Osogbo-Iwo road. 

His name is Taiwo Olaleye,  popularly called 'Elejigbo',  he is married with six children and lives at a slum in Ido-osun,  an outskirts of Osogbo,  the Osun State capital. 

Taiwo,  who is a professional Bricklayer was hit by a reckless driver on Thursday,  June 14, 2018 while working on the terribly bad portion of the road,  using sand to fill up those portholes to make it motorable for road users. 

"It was around 4:30pm, on the eve of Eid-el-fitri, as I was coming with sand inside a container on my head,  this vehicle was just coming on high speed,  I expected him to slow down when he got to the bad portion of the road,  unfortunately,  he did not, and as I was trying to escape,  he hit me and I passed out immediately. 

"I was later revived at a private hospital in Estate,  I was badly injured,  there was deep cut in my head and tight,  I also have fracture in my limbs. 

"The driver of the vehicle was the one  who rushed me to the hospital and also paid for my hospital bill;  he apologised, claiming his break failed. I spent over a week in the hospital .

"I was surprised that police officers  from Dada Estate Police Station  came to visit me in the hospital and even gave me five thousand naira to cater for myself.

" It has been a tough time for me and my family, we hardly afford a meal per day,  it is as bad as that", Taiwo resorted. 

When our Correspondent asked about what prompted him to take up the job as volunteer and abandoned his original profession of bricklaying,  the Ejigbo-born artisan said he worked on the road whenever he was not going to work. 

"It is when I do not have work to do that I go to that place, I prefer doing that to staying idle at home,  I was doing that to help myself and the government. 

"Motorists plying the road do give me money in appreciation of my efforts,  the proceeds have been helping me to fulfil some family obligation whenever I am not going to site".

Meanwhile,  an Artist,  who operates a Gallery in the neighborhood, Mr Adebisi Adeniran  has described Taiwo's case as pathetic and pitiable,  he called on privileged individuals in the state to come to his rescue. 

"I have known him working on that bad portion of the road for the past three years,  even before I relocated my gallery to this area,  he is very hardworking but unfortunately 'unlucky '.

"What I really love about this man is his zeal; he is relentless and humble , very hardworking.

"Instead of going into crime to cushion  the effect of his poor economic condition,  he opted for such a job, and has been very consistent.

"I think the man needs help,  society should at least reciprocate his gesture,  also,  government should  come to his rescue and provide solace to him."


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