· Guarantees free passage on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway
Kayode Fasua in Abeokuta
The Ogun State Government yesterday said it had engaged the Nigeria Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and Nigeria Police to get rid of drug peddlers and hoodlums from all parks and garages in the state.
The state government, also, assured commuters that there would not be a return of traffic logjam along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway during the period of Christmas and New Year.
The Chairman, Ogun State Parks and Garages Development Agency (PAGADA), Mr. Abeeb Ajayi gave this assurance in a chat with THISDAY just after the inaugural meeting of the board members of the agency in Abeokuta.
Ajayi said the agency would impose heavy sanctions on operators of trailers and other articulated vehicles causing obstruction along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway and other highways in the state, during the Yuletide.
He also warned those issuing unauthorised tickets and traders engaging in sales of illicit drugs in various motor parks in the state to desist or face the wrath of the law.
Ajayi said the agency would collaborate with security agencies, including the police and the Nigeria Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), to rid parks and garages of hoodlums and drug peddlers.
According to him, the board had the mandate of Governor Dapo Abiodun to carry out necessary reforms and ensure compliance with safety, security and environmental regulations in parks and garages across the state.
He disclosed that a planned meeting with various transport unions and associations in the state would further discuss modalities towards achieving the objectives of the agency.
He added that there was the urgent need to have the database of all operators in the industry, for proper sanitisation of their operations.
Ajayi added that the state government was seriously working to clear Ogere, Mowe and Ibafo, among other areas along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, of needless traffic congestion, adding that a mobile court had been deployed to sanction drivers engaging in indiscriminate parking on the highway.
“Anybody operating in our parks and garages without our registration should note that the Board of PAGADA is not going to take that any longer. We want to have a database and we want to know those who are operating in our industry.
“We are not ready to interfere in the affairs of the individual unions, neither are we concerned with what goes on in their internal arrangement.
“Anybody issuing tickets without the authority of the agency should know that it is illegal. A lot of introduction of tickets and levies are going on in our parks and garages.
“The board has equally resolved to also look at these parks and garages and send a warning signal to those who are selling illicit drugs to immediately desist. We are going to get the security agencies to chase them out.
“Because this is Christmas season, we have resolved with other sister agencies, including security operatives, to sanitise the expressway. The Mowe-Ibafo axis should be cleared off. People should go to the parks to pick their passengers.
“And again, the people operating at Ogere trailer park should be reasonable with their parking.
“As we speak, there is a stand-by mobile court in Ogere with the operatives of Federal Road Safety Corps and other sister organisations joining in this operation. During this yuletide period, we must make our highway very free,” he asserted.