By Segun James
The Lagos State Government has reassured residents of Lagos that there was no cause to be apprehensive as all necessary measures to ameliorate any discomfort owing to the partial closure of the Third Mainland Bridge have been taken care of.
The government stated this at a joint press conference addressed by the Commissioners for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso; Transportation, Dr. Frederick Oladeinde; Special Advisers to Lagos State Governor on Works and Infrastructure, Mrs. Aramide Adeyoye and Mr. Oluwatoyin Fayinka, Special Adviser on Transportation, as well as Chairman of the Presidential Task Team on Apapa, Mr. Kayode Opeifa.
The government said all funding for the reconstruction of Abule-Egba-Toll Gate route on the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway was ready but work was being delayed due to procurement process.
Omotoso assured that all well-known traffic management strategies had been put in place to ensure a smooth ride.
According to Oladeinde, there was no need to worry as 75 per cent road users would not be affected, pointing out that the 25 per cent that would be affected, alternative routes had been created for them and would most times be travelling against traffic.
The Special Adviser on Works and Infrastructure Mrs. Adeyoye said the government had assigned all the responsibilities to all the traffic management agencies in the state especially the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), adding that major repairs had been carried out on inner roads in areas like Oyingbo and Yaba that had direct links with the bridge to ensure hitch-free ride.
She assured that the alternative routes would make movement easier for people, assuring that the state government had done everything to make life a little more comfortable for people as they journey to ensure a smooth ride.
Fayinka assured that not less than 650 LASTMA officials will take the lead in traffic management to be complemented by other traffic agencies and “they are well prepared and trained and are ready.”
Also speaking, Opeifa assured that there was no cause for alarm because it was something that had been done before and like before there won’t be much stress or hardship on road users.
The General Manager LASTMA, Mr. Olajide Oduyoye said, “this is not the time for the officers to arrest offenders for minor traffic infractions” because of the ongoing repairs of the bridge.
He noted, “it is the responsibility of every Lagosian to deal with the traffic on the roads,” even as he appealed that everybody should be part of the traffic management this period, adding that, “you are part of the problem of traffic management if you are buying and selling in traffic, parking on the road, disobeying traffic officers, you don’t need LASTMA to come and teach you how to drive, try your ultimate best to drive properly.”