Oju Elegba

by Olorunshola Oso

What has evolved to become a main stay, a household name, and a popular town in Nigeria, is not without its roots. Oju Elegba which literarily means “the eyes of the cane owner” or “a tribal marked face” as some choose to interpret it, actually has a different, deep—rooted meaning. The name Oju Elegba originated from the idol called Elegba, whose shrine was located at a spot called Oju. However, the name Oju Elegba emanated from the description of that spot which is Oju Elegba, meaning the shrine of Elegba.

Oju Elegba, a popular Lagos town bordered by other towns like Mushin, Yaba, and Surulere, is known for its rowdy setting. It is tensely populated with Yahoo lads or call them area boys if you like. The street workers also dot the streets at night, and the surroundings, though not exactly an eyesore, is not health friendly.

This centre stage of Elegba has evolved over time to a commercial centre in Lagos, with commercial buses combing the way through it. A complete account can not be given without a documentation of the hustling and bustling that takes place at the popular Oju Elegba environ. The noise is something a first-timer to the neighbourhood can never miss. Those with countless experience of this Lagos town even say the area boys and the lousy environment constitute a nuisance.

One other thing you cannot miss at Oju Elegba especially if you drive a car is the popular Oju Elegba Bridge. It comes in handy most times as a way of escape from the traffic congestion that consistently plague the Oju Elegba junction. One reason for the traffic bottleneck is the fact that Oju Elegba serves as a link to other nearby towns like Yaba, Surulere, Mushin, and the Lagos Island.

Oju Elegba is not far fetched from the Atlantic ocean which stands as a symbol of Lagos; “Eko aromi sa lengbe lengbe”, meaning a land with abundance of water too much for its inhabitants to behold..

At the moment, Oju Elegba is more popular not basically as a shrine as it were, but as a town with a peculiar feel. The rich cultural heritage of this town stands tall in the history of Lagos as a whole, as key towns in Lagos cannot be listed without a mention of Oju Elegba. Just as other prominent towns like Isale Eko, Idumota, Mushin Oju Ina, Oju Elegba will always tower high in the cadre of prominent towns in Lagos.

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Native July 18, 2015 - 11:14 am

Before Tinubu reconstructed Ojuelegba road that connects Yaba to Itire/Lawanson. It used to experience a lot of traffic hold up but it’s much better now with traffic officers and lights.however once in a while when the officers are not around the bus drivers wake up the idol of confusion.
Also it’s a commercial area as you have lots of shops along the roads and the popular Tejuosho market towards the Yaba end.
some shops that have stood the test of time like samaco records and homeboys boutique are on ojuelegba road.
It’s also not a haven for yahoo boys. That is Ikeja ,festac and Ajao estate. Area boys are abound though. .

Native July 18, 2015 - 11:04 am

Ojuelegba is not a town but an area in surulere traversed by the popular ojuelegba road. I don’t know about the idol part.

AMOGU AUGUSTA June 28, 2015 - 7:17 am

I don’t really know OJU ELEGBA that much but the things i have heard about it, it actually seems like a memorable place

Tayo mebude July 9, 2012 - 6:26 pm

Good article.it promotes our culture.

Kwadwo January 7, 2008 - 12:14 pm

Fela said: “for Oju Elegba…moto dey come from east..moto dey come from west..policeman no dey for center..na confusion be dat”!


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