By Bose Adebayo
If you have an appointment and would want to be punctual in keeping it, then it is important you give Oshodi a wide berth no matter what short-cut option it offers you. Reason? The area is fast returning to its better forgotten notoriety as an enclave of confusion in Lagos.
The free movement of vehicles which was the immediate gain of the demolition of illegal structures in the area and the sacking of roadside traders has recently given way to frequent traffic bottlenecks around there.
Vanguard MetroÂ recent visits to the place revealed the cause of this recent development to be some failed sections on the roads as well as laxity on the part of some uniformed men who are supposedÂ to monitor activities in the area.
Area mostly affected include Alasia to Bolade, Mushin to Cappa, Oshodi road, Oshodi-Isale, Mile 2 road, DHL and Asiwani bus-stops. The bus-stops usually experience traffic jams between the hours of 6am and 7pm owing to the deplorable condition of the road as well as the non-chalant attitude of some uniformed men.
Vanguard Metroâ€™s investigation revealed that the potholes at Bolade usually force motorists to slow down and as a result traffic jam starts building up between Bolade and Alasia, and in most cases, this stretches into several hours. Many motorists believe the gridlock would have been under control if the traffic wardens at Bolade are alive to their job.
They are usually four in number but only one of them is often seen controlling the traffic while the rest idle away the time chatting with visitors who are always found in the cabin with them.Â Same obtains at Cappa with uniformed men paying little or no attention to the trafffic.
Even though there is a patrol vehicle always at Epe/Ikorodu motor park, most of these uniformed men are always too busy chatting rather than carrying out their official duties, thereby worsening the situation which usually starts building upÂ around 5pm.
The gridlock at DHL and Junction bus-stops has been blamed on LASTMA officials who usually resume at DHL around 6.30 am before they later move to Junction or Ewenla road around 8.30am or 9am.
Oshodi road is usually a no-go area to motorists between the hours of 6pm and 10pm owing to the fact that the displaced traders have gradually returned back their haunt along the road, especially in the evenings, no thanks to officials of Kick Against Indiscipline (KAI) who usually allocate spaces to the traders for a certain fee.
Traffic usually starts at Mile 2 road and Asiwani bus-stops around 7pm when some police men mount illegal road blocks to extort money from commercial bus drivers who must part with N100 or face the wrath of these policemen.
â€œI have been avoiding Oshodi because of the hold-up there; I now pass through other routes so as not to lose my job. My boss has severally threatened to sack me if I come late to work, â€ said a car owner by name Amoke.
A commercial bus driver has this to say: â€œBefore, they have been saying the hold-up is caused by us commercial drivers. This is beyond us, the road has gone teribly bad,â€ he said.
A LASTMA official who spoke on condition of anonymity told Vanguard Metro thus: â€œNobody should blame anybody for the gridlock. We have reported to our ogas about the failed sections of the road and nobody responded. Can we kill ourselves over governmentâ€™s failures?â€
â€œIn spite of all the promises they made to transform the place, can you believe what you are seeing? Our government is good at making promises without fulfilling them,â€ said a pedestrian by name Uche Okorie .
Lagos lawmaker sponsors 120 students in computer training
The Chairman, Committee on Human Rights and Public Petitions of the Lagos State House of Assembly, MrÂ Kabir Lawal, has described the acquisition of computer skills as a way to empower the youth and eradicate poverty in our society.
He said this while giving out certificates at the graduation ceremony forÂ 120 students in computer training organized by him at the Surulere Local Government Council.
According to the lawmaker, for developed countries all over the world, the computer has become a catalyst forÂ their technological advancement.Â â€œNo nation can be technologically advanced without basic training in computer and education in general,â€ he stated.
The lawmaker noted that the reason for organising computer training was borne out of the fact that many young men and women in Surulere are jobless as a result of unemployment which confronts the country.
Addressing the graduates, anÂ Alliance for Democracy leader in the state, Mr. Abayomi Thompson, described the occasion as a way of eradicating poverty among the youths, saying that there is need for other representatives in the council to emulate the good gesture of Mr. Kabir Lawal. He further stated that Mr. Lawal has contributed to development of Surulere in terms of vocational training.
One of the graduates, Mr. Bello Samushideen thanked Hon. Lawal for coming to his assistance in computer training, saying that it would go a long way in turning his life around.
The occasion was attended by politicians in Surulere, including Chairman of the Council, Dr. Rasaq Folami; AC leader, Alhaji L.B Odunsi, and former Chairman Surulere local government Council Mr. Hakeem Dickson.
Highlights of the occasion were the presentation of three brand new computers to first to third as well as presentation of certificates to the all graduates.Â Â Mr. Gbeleyi Olasunkanmi emerged overall best student.
Council boss rehabilitates road
THE Chairman of Olorunda Local Council Development Area, Hon. Amida Abudu, has assured people in Ward D of the Council of his commitment to executing developmental projects in the area in fulfilment of his promises upon assuming office last year.
According to the councillor of Ward D and the Majority leader, Hon. Okewale Oladapo: â€œThe major road in Ward D,Â Ilogbo Eremo Pota road has been upgraded to be motorable. Before now it was in bad state. There are other projects going on, like the recreational centre. It will be commissioned upon completion by early next month and other link roads are now useful to all users.
â€œThe community also benefitted from the four feet embarkment that channel water from a spot that makes a particular portion of the road a death trapâ€.
Hon. Oladapo also informed Vanguard Metro that the council boss and himself were recently awardedÂ the best council chief and the most active councillor in Lagos State, respectively.s