The Lagos State Government on Thursday reiterated its warning residents in the state to desist from the practice of locking down their streets with iron gates, saying it will henceforth sanction defaulters.
Mr Muslim Folami, Commissioner, Local Government and Community Affairs said this at the 2018 Ministerial Press Briefing of the Ministry to mark the three years in office of Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State at Alausa, Lagos.
Over the years, the state government has warned residents repeatedly to avoid keeping street gates locked perpetually.
The government, in some cases, had been forced to move in to pull down gates in erring streets.
Revisiting the issue on Thursday, Folami said that the state government was concerned about the welfare and safety of the residents.
”There is a law in Lagos State that forbids residents installing street gates indiscriminately in the state.
”The residents must obey the laws of the state government. We are not saying you should not have gates in your streets, but those gates where installed should be manned 24 hours.
”The reason we are opposed to the practice of keeping gates perpetually locked is that there may be emergencies, there may be fire outbreak.
”A pregnant woman can fall into labour anytime and would want to go to the hospital; if you lock the gates, what happens? We have had cases where some pregnant women died because the gates were closed.
“There were so many incidents of fire outbreak and the streets could not be accessed to put out the fire because the gates to the streets were closed.
” We will not fold our hands and allow such things to happen. As a government, we have decided that henceforth, anyone found guilty will be punished,’’ he said.
During the year under review, the commissioner said the Ministry organised a stakeholders meeting with market leaders and traders across the State on the need to comply with the directive of the state government on Cleaner Lagos Initiative.
He said the meeting addressed the issue of dumping refuse in unauthorized places, which must be curbed to prevent environmental hazards.
According to him, officials of the ministry also went on tour of markets across the state to sensitise traders on the need to keep their environment clean and avoid street trading.
Folami said that the governor, in line with the present administration’s commitment to rapid development at the grassroots, approved the upgrade of six Baales to Obaship Stools.