Lagos Declares Tomorrow Work-Free Day over Buhari’s Visit

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• Announces traffic diversion, alternative routes during Buhari’s visit
Gboyega Akinsanmi
The Lagos State Government has declared tomorrow a work-free day ahead the two-day visit of President Muhammadu Buhari, who will chair the 10th Bola Tinubu Colloquium scheduled to hold at Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island.

The state government has announced traffic diversions ahead of Buhari’s visit, noting that adequate preparation has been made “to mitigate the impact of the road diversions on residents, while access will be given to any emergency situation.”

The traffic advice was issued yesterday shortly after the state governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, inaugurated the Alapere Road and junction improvement works in Agboyi Ketu area of the state, with an assurance that his administration “will continue to judiciously put the monies paid by tax payers to good use.”

At the inauguration yesterday, Ambode the road was a fulfillment of one of the recommendations of the traffic summit his administration convened in November 2015.
Among others, Ambode said the summit recommended that critical road junctions should be redesigned, improved and or upgraded “to meet present and future needs of road users to reduce travel times and support economic activities.
“Undoubtedly, this infrastructure, with the improvement it has conferred on this axis, and the signalization of the traffic here, will not only serve the purpose of reducing travel time and resolving traffic gridlock,” the governor explained.

The governor acknowledged that the road infrastructure would also increase the value of properties in this area and become a source of prosperity to the owners. That is the Lagos of our dream, a Lagos where we all succeed, together.”
Ambode also approved the construction of the Phase III of the traffic intervention plan in the Ketu – Alapere Area, including the dualisation of Demuren Road (Alapere Roundabout to Ketu Junction) and Davies Streets (Mr. Biggs Junction to Mile 12).
He said the Phase III “is a strategic linkage between the Third Mainland Bridge-Ogudu-Alapere Corridor via Alapere and Ikorodu Road-Ketu- Ojota-Mile 12 Corridor. The project will definitely provide an alternative route for Lagosians, thereby taking pressure off the Ojota Interchange.”

In a statement he issued yesterday, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Kehinde Bamigbetan, justified the work-free day, noting that it was declared “to enable Lagos resident come out in good number to welcome Buhari.”

He specifically, urged residents to adhere to security guidance earlier announced to make Buhari’s visit peaceful and orderly, noting that the president would inaugurate the new Ikeja Bus Terminal during the two-day working visit.
According to the commissioner, the president will also attend a colloquium in honour of national leader of All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and embark on tour of the Eko Atlantic City, among others.
At a session with journalists yesterday, the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Imohimi Edgal, stated that some certain roads “will be closed at certain times.”

He assured that some diversions “will be made. But I want to use this opportunity to appeal for the support and understanding of Lagosians that this temporary road closures and diversions might cause a little inconvenience.
He listed the areas to be affected “to include Bank Anthony Way in Ikeja, Agege Motor Road, a section of Eko Hotel Road in Victoria Island and Old Marina in Ikoyi axis. We have done the necessary threat assessments.

“We have reached out to all stakeholders in areas. We are using this opportunity to advise all transport unions to abide with the terms of agreement we reached during meetings with them regarding the visit.
“We will not want to see commercial motorcycles plying the prohibited routes of Agege Motor Road, Bank Anthony Way and anywhere on the Island. Should that order be disobeyed, we would be constrained to ensure that you are arrested with your motorcycles impounded.

“Whoever is also found as a passenger will also be arrested and prosecuted so do not patronise these Okadas on these prohibited routes not only for the purpose of the visit but also to ensure that Lagos State Laws on the regulation of commercial motorbikes are obeyed at all times,” Edgal said.

He said three locations have been designated for all first emergency responders to station their equipment and officials including the Police, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), LASAMBUS, Civil Defence, Fire Brigade, among others at Ikeja, Victoria Island and Free Trade Zone at Lekki-Akodo axis.