The Ososo community in Akoko Edo Local Government Area of Edo has appealed to the state government to rehabilitate Ososo Tourist Site as part of its effort to boost tourism in the state.
Members of the community made the appeal in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ososo on Sunday.
They said that the rehabilitation of the site would create employment opportunities and boost economic activities in the area.
The said that the tourist centre had in the past attracted people from all walks of life and from within and outside the country.
They said that the facilities in the site including accommodation had decayed, while the premises had been taken over by weeds.
Mr Monday Bello, a former staff of the centre, said the rate at which the site deteriorated was so fast that the people kept wondering.
He blamed successive governments in the state for not paying attention to the centre.
“It all started around 1992 when the then military administration laid off workers in the centre and by the year 2000, the place was no longer functioning at all.
“I, as a former employee of the place, am not happy. It pains me so much that we could allow such a beautiful place to waste away.
“The government should at least consider what the place used to represent and bring it back to life,” Bello said.
Another resident, Steven Clement, said the current state of Ososo tourist site had denied some families in the community of their daily bread.
“I must tell you that in the past the place generated employment opportunities for the people and made economic activities to boom in this area.
“You can see how desolate the place is now. Serious economy activities used to take place in the surroundings when the centre was functional,” he said.
Mrs Nana Bello, also a resident, said: “I use to sell petty items like soft drinks and snacks here, but now all I do is to sit at home all day.
“I know what the income I got from this little trading did in my life then. It’s so sad the centre has been left to rot away,” she said.
“I am seriously appealing to the government to do something urgent to put this place in order.
"We are not blaming any government for the centre’s present state; my appeal is for the general turnaround of the place,” she said.