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Monday, 6 August 2018

Nigeria: Apapa Gridlock - Ambode Expands Trailer Park Capacity to Over 5,000



As a way of easing traffic gridlock on the Apapa-Oshodi Expressway and environs, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State, yesterday, disclosed that a 5,000-capacity truck terminal will be constructed in the Ijanikin axis of the state.
It will serve as another parking lot for articulated trucks in the state in addition to the Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, ABAT, truck terminal at Orile-Iganmu.
He also assured residents that the traffic gridlock will be permanently addressed within eight weeks.
Governor Ambode spoke as Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria, MWUN, urged the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, to withdraw the operating licence of any shipping company without a holding bay within a stipulated time.
Ambode said this at the flag-off of expansion works on the 1,000 capacity ABAT truck terminal during an inspection tour of Apapa axis.

He said: "I want to appeal to residents of Lagos that within eight weeks, we should be able to get the trucks terminal working and ensure that we bring lasting solution to gridlock within the Apapa ports.


"My visit here is to flag-off the reconstruction of the trailer park in Orile so that it can accommodate 1,000 trucks. We will do this in collaboration with the NPA in order to have effective call-up system within the parks.
"The expansion to this terminal will be used temporarily for cargo trucks. Through this, we will be able to sectionalise or provide a separate park for the trucks in the state."
Commending the Federal Government for approving reconstruction of Apapa-Oshodi Expressway and rail tracks to link Ibadan, Ambode said his administration was considering the use of badges on waterways to complement both modes of transportation system.
In his remarks, the Chairman, Association of Maritime Truck Owners, AMATO, Chief Remi Ogungbemi said: "Today is the beginning of a new era as far as Lagos State is concerned. We have been saying it that our Governor is an action Governor and his coming here today has shown that he is very dynamic and pragmatic. This is what we have been expecting and for the governor to be here to see things, and flag off the rehabilitation and expansion of this terminal, shows that he is not only talking but also matching words with action."
Traffic diversion on Festac Link Bridge

Meantime, following the inferno that destroyed several vehicles and affected the structural integrity of Festac Link Bridge, Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area, the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA, has announced plans to partially close the bridge to traffic to complete repair works on the bridge.
In a statement, the General Manager of LASTMA, Wale Musa, said motorists coming out of Festac from 1st, 2nd, 11th Avenues, and 21 Road were advised to make use of the link bridge to connect Apple-Junction while, motorists going into Festac from Oshodi, Cele, Ago Palace Way and Second Rainbow are to link Durbar Road enroute Mazamaza Bridge to Festac 1st Gate; or motorists coming from Oshodi and Cele are to make use of Mile2, to connect Festac through Mazamaza Bridge and Festac 1st Gate.
Withdraw licence of shipping firms without holding bays, Labour urges NPA
Meanwhile, the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria lamented that shipping companies without holding bays have contributed in no small measure to the chaotic gridlock on Oshodi-Apapa road that leads to the nation's two major seaports of Apapa and Tin-Can.
In a joint statement by its President General and Secretary General, Adeyanju Adewale and Felix Akingboye, respectively, MWUN have commended the Federal Government for approving the total reconstruction of the Oshodi-Apapa expressway.
The statement reads in part: "On July 5, 2018, at our National Executive Council, NEC, meeting held at Golden Tulip Hotel, Lagos, among others, following the Federal Government failure to make the access roads to the nation's seaports, especially the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway motorable as agreed with us and other stakeholders in February this year, leaders of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria, renewed the 21 days ultimatum to the Federal Government over the deplorable state of the access roads to the nation's ports that was suspended in February 2018 following the agreement we reached with the Federal Government and other stakeholders that the road would be fixed on or before the end of second quarter.
"However, before the expiration of the fresh ultimatum, the Federal Government through the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, SAN, announced that the government has approved the total reconstruction of the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway down to old toll gate at the cost of N72.9 billion to the Dangote Group for two years duration.
"As a Union with responsible and patriotic leaders, beside the welfare and wellbeing of our members, the economic growth of our great country is of utmost importance to us.
"The aim of the 21 days ultimatum is to draw the attention of the Federal Government to the deplorable state of the road and ensure that the government makes the road motorable for users.
"Finally, we call on the management of NPA to enforce the directive on holding bays by the shipping companies and to withdraw the operating license of any shipping company that fails to comply within a stipulated time."

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