By Monsuru Olowoopejo
Governor Babatunde Fashola has warned auto dealers and traders to desist from displaying cars and trading on the walkways in the state, saying auto dealers or traders who fail to heed government warning will face the full wrath of the law.
Fashola however disclosed that the state government had a few days ago awarded the construction and upgrading of 25 roads, aimed at reducing travel time across the state.
The governor who handed out the warning at the commissioning of the newly reconstructed 600 meters; Kodesoh road and 550 meters; Simbiat Abiola road in Ikeja lamented that auto dealers and traders in the state have turned walkways to trading spots despite several appeal from different agencies of government.
According to him, “As long as we turn our roads to shopping malls where everybody buys in traffic, we all pay the price as those who sell on the roads and those who don’t sell spend hours in traffic and that causes stress and hypertension.
“As I was driving down here, I discovered that auto dealers and traders in the state especially on Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way, have turned the walkways on the highway into showrooms and shops.
“I am using this opportunity to tell them to get land where they can display and sell their cars. If we want to be great people, we don’t turn our highways into car shops. And whether you sell computers, electronics or whatever, this is a mega city, you can sell your goods at the markets and the malls. You can’t sell on the highways.” he added.
Fashola said his administration is committed to completing 200 inner city roads, pointing out that construction work is on-going in Shomolu, Epe and others area of the state.
“Just recently, we handed over 16 roads in Mushin. And the work in Ikeja is not finished. Work is still ongoing on Joel Ogunnaike, Isaac John and couple of other roads. All of those 200 roads and the 25 news roads we awarded few days ago.
“They will be finished because our capacity to complete them hasn’t diminished. I promise to serve you till the last day of this administration. The most important is for all of us to know the reason why the government builds roads.”
“We don’t build because we want to but because roads are defining means for our way of life. Roads should help us get to our business places, work and help our children get to school quickly. And where the road function the cost of transportation will reduce because travelling should be a pleasant experience,” he said.
Speaking earlier, Commissioner For Works and Infrastructure, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat said the state government will continue to improve on the provision of infrastructure in Lagos.
Hamzat added that the two roads are very strategic to motorist and residents, saying it will help them to navigate area easily.
According to the commissioner, “These roads allow us to de congest traffic with Ikeja.
When we build roads in Lagos, we provide walkways to allow pedestrian to have easy movement. We are also building drainage channels because we want to move water. As you know in Lagos we are two meters below sea level. Also, the drains are not meant for cabbage cans.
“We want to appeal to residents not to trade on the walkway. The reason why we created the walkway was to allow residents to have walking access without having to fear the upcoming vehicle,” he added.