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Maritime workers threaten strike over Oshodi-Apapa Expressway

By Victor Ahiuma-Young
LAGOS—MARITIME Workers Union of Nigeria, MWUN, has expressed disgust over the deplorable state of access roads to the nation’s sea ports especially the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, saying it is totally unacceptable.

*Traffic-jammed Berger axis of the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway

It noted that industrial unrest appears to be the only option to draw government’s attention to the plight of road users, business owners and residents of the area.

Addressing leaders of the union and other stakeholders at the union’s National Executive Council, NEC, meeting in Lagos, President-General of the union, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju accused the Federal Government of breaching the agreement reached with the union that the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway would be made motorable before the end of July.

He lamented that despite the Federal Government’s promise that the road would be fixed before the end of second quarter, only the Ijora/Apapa Wharf had been partially fixed while the Tin Can Island end remained unattended to.

He said: “This is not acceptable to the union. The ports deal with containerised goods. When you have trucks carrying containers in a deplorable road, how do you expect such goods to get to their destinations? We once gave ultimatum to the Federal Government.

There was a meeting with Nigerian Ports Authority, Managing Director, Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, officials of Ministry of Transport and other stakeholders over the road which has now worsened since then. The NPA management through the MD, Usman Bala, made a commitment to repair the road. We agreed on a specific time which is close and we are still expecting. So, there is no way business can thrive in a place that the road is not accessible most time.”

The gridlock has become unbearable to everybody concerned. We, the workers, business owners, residents among others can no longer cope with the situation. The road especially the Tin Can end down to Ottor Whorf. It has completely failed. You cannot quantify the cost and losses operators, road users, business owners are losing daily because of the situation.

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