Amid apprehension over the partial closure of the Third Mainland Bridge which kicked off by 12 midnight on Friday, Lagos State government has reassured Lagosians that there is no cause to be apprehensive as all necessary measures to ameliorate any discomfort as a result of the partial closure has been taken.
The state government stated this at a joint press conference addressed by the Commissioners for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, Transportation, Dr. Frederick Oladeinde; Special Advisers to Lagos State Governor on Works and Infrastructure, Mrs. Aramide Adeyoye and Mr. Oluwatoyin Fayinka, Special Adviser on Transportation, as well as chairman of the presidential Task Team on Apapa, Mr. Kayode Opeifa.
The government also said funding for the reconstruction of Abule-Egba-Toll Gate route on the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway was ready but work is being delayed due to the procurement process.
Omotoso assured that all well- known traffic management strategies have been put in place to ensure a smooth ride.
According to Oladeinde, there was no need to worry as 75 per cent road users will not be affected, pointing out that the 25 per cent that will be affected alternative routes have been created for them and will most times be traveling against traffic.
The Special Adviser on Works and Infrastructure Mrs. Aramide Adeyoye said the government has assigned all the responsibilities to all the traffic management agencies in the state especially the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA), adding that major repairs have been carried out on inner roads in areas like Oyingbo and Yaba that have direct links with the bridge to ensure hitch-free ride.
She assured that the alternative routes will make movement easier for people, assuring that the state government has done everything to make life a little more comfortable for people as they journey to ensure a smooth ride.
Fayinka assured that not less than 650 LASTMA officials will take the lead in traffic management to be complemented by other traffic agencies and “they are well prepared and trained and are ready”.
Also speaking, Opeifa assured that there was no cause for alarm because it is something that has been done before and like before there won’t be much stress or hardship on road users.
The General Manager LASTMA, Mr Olajide Oduyoye said, “this is not the time for the officers to arrest offenders for minor traffic infractions” because of the ongoing repair of the bridge.
He noted, “it is the responsibility of every Lagosian to deal with the traffic on the roads,” he appealed that everybody should be part of the traffic management this period, adding that, “you are part of the problem of traffic management if you are buying and selling in traffic, parking on the road, disobeying traffic officers, you don’t need LASTMA to come and teach you how to drive, try your ultimate best to drive properly”.