By Dirisu Yakubu
THE Federal Government, yesterday, promised to deploy 200 security personnel to clear the gridlock at the Tin Can Island and Apapa area of Lagos, and also enforce compliance on heavy-duty trucks not to park on the roads.
The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, disclosed this during a meeting with Maritime stakeholders and Maritime Workers’ Union of Nigeria, MWUN, in Lagos.
The union had threatened to go on strike if the government failed to address the gridlock on the route.
The minister, however, noted that a steering committee, headed by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Magdalene Ajani, would meet monthly, until the challenges were overcome.
Members of the committee are expected to be drawn from the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA; Nigerian Shippers Council, NSC; MWUN, Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC, and the Lagos State Government.
Amaechi said: “The issue of traffic on these routes is because, in Nigeria, we don’t discipline people. People do whatever they like, even when it’s wrong, because there is no consequence for our actions. We need security officers to enforce compliance on trucks blocking the roads.
“The 200 men at the Tin Can and Apapa are to be stationed there daily because Nigerians don’t obey, until there are consequences for actions. NPA and NSC must have a level of funding to resolve these challenges.
“We need to talk to shippers and traders, especially those around Warri, to see how they can use the Warri Port, so that Lagos Ports will be decongested. We can get security to follow the cargoes to that area, so that traders from Aba and Onitsha that are ready to use that Port can go there.”
Also speaking, Deputy Secretary-General of MWUN, Abudu Eroje, assured that a manual call-up system would commence before the electronic system to enable all access road to Tin Can.