January 27, 2011

Voters’ Registration: Lagos suspends restriction of movement on sanitation day

By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State has directed that the usual restriction of movement on the last Saturday of the monthly environmental sanitation be suspended for the Saturday 29th January, 2011.

Similarly, traders at the Ladipo Market, under the aegis of the Aguiyi Ironsi International Trade Centre, Mushin, Lagos had earlier on Wednesday closed up their shops to enable members participate in the registration exercise even as the leadership of National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) directed all members of the union operating public transportation to stay off the road on Saturday January 29 2011 within the hours of 8am to 2pm, urging them to use the period to go out enmasse and register to vote.

Commissioner for the Environment, Dr. Muiz Banire who made suspension of movement known said the governor, who is currently on inspection of voters registration exercise issued the directive to enable more people participate in the on-going Voters Registration.

He highlighted the need to ensure a hitch free registration exercise for residents of the state and opined that the restriction would further compound the logistics and transportation plans of officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC as well as residents to the various registration units.

Banire, however, stressed that the need to live in a clean and healthy environment cannot be compromised and therefore, appealed to Lagos residents to turn out in large numbers to clean their environment especially the drainage channels.

He counselled residents to desist from burning of refuse disposing them in drainage or other illegal areas as the Lagos Waste Management Authority, LAWMA will deploy its men and materials to ensure prompt evacuation of waste generated during the exercise.

Commissioner said Environmental Health Officers, men of KAI Brigade and other related officers would be at all local government areas to monitor environmental activities and ensure that residents comply to government directives on environmental sanitation matters.

Banire further said that these Officers have been mandated to bring to book, residents of filthy tenements and environments. He however urged residents not to hesitate in reporting to the appropriate authorities any form of environmental nuisances and pollution hazardous to the general well being of the citizenry in their various areas of abode.

Also in a bid to participate well in the ongoing voter registration exercise, traders in Ladipo Auto Market earlier closed up their shops to enable member participate in the exercise.

President of the trade association, Jonathan Okoli told newsmen that the decision was reached to enable over twelve thousand traders who do business on a daily basis in the market to register to vote in their residential areas.

Okoli said the decision which was unanimously reached upon by the executive members of the association was the association’s contribution to ensure that its members are not disenfranchised.

“This is our own contribution to the registration exercise for both the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Lagos state government. We would all close up our shops on Wednesday and we have sensitised our members in the last three days to ensure they use the day to register so that they would be able to vote on Election Day.