Headlines Again, Truckers block Oshodi-Apapa Expressway By maritimemag December 2, 2023 ShareTweet 0 By Bisi LAWAL Many motorists and commuters had bitter tales to tell on the Mile 2-Oshodi expressway on Thursday, as trucks and tankers, shut the road between Second Rainbow inbound to Mile 2. This is inspite of the inauguration of the Lagos State Trucks and Cargo Operation by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to tackle traffic gridlock and restore sanity to the ports’ access roads and Apapa environs The sad development left motorists stranded in traffic for several hours. The gridlock on Apapa-Oshodi expressway stretched from Cele Bus Stop, Second Rainbow toward Mile 2 to Tin-Can Ports. The security agents and Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA, team were overwhelmed, as they watched helplessly as truckers parked indiscriminately along the expressway. One of the stranded motorists, who simply identified himself as Mr. Ojo, lampooned Lagos State government officials for their lackluster approach to ending the perennial gridlock permanently on the axis. Ojo said: “I just got to the office after spending two hours from Fatgbems Filling Station to the office, which is supposed to take just 10 minutes. This is pathetic and we are having a sitting governor!” Efforts to speak with the Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Sola Giwa, proved abortive as he was yet to respond to text messages sent to his mobile phone at the time of filing this report. Following the inauguration of the committee, the Commissioner for Transportation, Oluwaseun Osiyemi, had urged the committee led by Lukman Shittu to adhere strictly to the work guidelines of the state government and the ministry. Also, the patron of the committee, Chief Remi Ogungbemi, encouraged every trucker to render adequate support by obeying traffic rules and regulations guiding truck movement into the ports, which is the only way the working environment can be safer and more pleasant. The Association of Maritime Truck Owners, AMATO, has said that a joint effort by trucker owners and security agencies will clear the chaotic gridlock on Oshodi – Tin-can expressway from next week. Speaking on the worsening gridlock along the Oshodi – Tin-can Island port, the Chairman of AMATO, Remi Ogungbemile, said that they have held several joint meetings on the way forward and a decision to commence clearance of the road was reached. Ogungbemile however, explained that the major challenge is that a lot of people are benefiting from the problem. His words: “The challenge there is that a lot of people are benefiting from the route. However, we are putting a necessary plan in place. From next week by God’s grace, we will start the clearing of the road in collaboration with some security agencies. “We cannot do it alone, especially with the tankers because we do not want a situation where the containerized trucks will leave the road and the tankers will remain. “We have agreed together and from next week we will begin to clear the road but we have also requested for security for protection because the people that are benefiting from it will not like that. “The hoodlums (urchins) who mount road blocks, the non-state actors, state actors and some people who are loyal to some persons in government are the ones benefiting from the problem.” Chairman of the Amalgamation of Container Truck Owners Association of Nigeria, ACTOAN, Mr Bello Ridwan, said the solution is the establishment of a pre-gate at Brawal for trucks heading for the port. He said the establishment of a truck park opposite Tin-can 2nd gate is also contributing to the gridlock because the release of a large number of trucks at the same time to the terminal causes gridlock at that end of the road. © 2023, maritimemag. All rights reserved.