Life in Ajegunle is a do-or-die affair according to Ajegunle twin star acts Mamuze. It’s an abracadabra effect for most, the more you look the less you see…you see a neighbor today and tomorrow he or she is a star. So everyone wants to be the next to ‘make it’.
But the music of Daddy Showkey captures it well:
‘If you see my mama Hosannah
Tell am say Hosannah
I dey for ghetto Hosannah
I no get problems Hosannah…’
Ajegunle was a hotbed of the Ijaw / Ilaje conflict, and this became an inspiration for the album CRISIS released in 1999/2000 by African China.
Over the years, the only escape for young people from this vast slum was their talents and nothing more. Ajegunle is one of the most popular ghettos in Lagos, mostly inhabited by the poor struggling to survive, to overcome poverty and make a good living. It used to serve as residence for the low cadre workers in the old Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, inhabited mostly by Ijaws, Ilajes, Itsekiris, Uhrobos, Igbos and Yorubas.
2015 election fallout
The chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts and APC senatorial candidate for Lagos West Hon Solomon Adeola has promised to attract infrastructure development to famous Ajegunle city in Ajeromi Ifelodun LGA of the Lagos West Senatorial district.
Addressing stakeholders and various groups in a town hall meeting as part of his face to face meeting with the people he intends to represent in the Senate, Hon. Adeola stated that in spite of the city and other areas in Ajeromi Ifelodun producing national stars in the entertainment and sports, the area has suffered serious neglect from the government in the plast 16 years.
The Baale of Ibafon, Ajeromi Ifelodun Chief Kayode Okunola commended Hon Adeola as the first contestant for the senate that met with them in such a consultative manner adding that they are almost getting used to being represented with such interaction with their representative.
Among the stakeholders were Market Women and Men groups, Community Development Associations, CDAs, South- South Indigenes Associations, Ndigbo Group, Artisans Group, NURTW and students
In other developments, the Ajeromi Ifelodun community with statistically over five million residents received a pledge from Ambode for a better Ajegunle, during the campaign rally of the APC in Ajeromi-Ifelodun council area of the state. “We have many entertainers, many sportsmen and women in this community. “If you vote APC into power, many entertainment centres and sports centres will be built so that we can always churn out stars and champions from this community.
Also, PDP member representing Ajeromi-Ifelodun Federal Constituency, Mrs Rita Orji, has promised to take the plight of people in the community to the United Nations if the government continues to neglect them, saying she will document Ajegunle’s plight to the United Nations while she was addressing her constituency in a town hall meeting.
The lawyer performed a heroic feat at the April 11 election, defeating Taiwo Adenekan of the All Progressives Congress who was the incumbent House member and a two-term council chairman of Ifelodun local council.
The dream of nearly every child you meet in Ajegunle is to be a star: in football, in
music, comedy and show business. According to Daddy Showkey, the musician who is arguably the greatest export out of Ajegunle, ‘In Ajegunle, you choose what you want to be yourself, a star or an armed robber’.