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Lagos serves tanker drivers 48-hour notice to quit roads, bridges



Traffic gridlock crippling business activities in Apapa, Lagos. PHOTO: SUNDAY AKINLOLU

Fashola vows to retrieve lands, properties FG sold to individuals
OWING to traffic gridlock in Apapa and some parts of the state, Lagos State Government yesterday issued 48-hour ultimatum to tanker drivers to remove their vehicles parked within 300 meters radius of fuel depots in the state.

The government, in a statement, said it was unreasonable to have tankers parked on roads and bridges while queuing for fuel that is not available.

The order, it was gathered, was a reaction to hundreds of tankers currently parked on the Eko Bridge down to Apapa and on the Mile 2 Expressway.

Attendant lockdown on these corridors have left commuters in the axis spending over six hours on daily basis to get to their destinations.

In another event, Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State yesterday accused the Federal Government of treating the state unfairly by selling to individuals lands and properties acquired for public use in the state.

Fashola lamented that rather than return the lands and properties to the official owners, the central government had continued to sell them to individuals for commercial purposes.

The governor raised this concern at the launch of two books titled: Contemporary State land matters in Nigeria: A case study of Lagos State (second edition) and In her own right: Abimbola Fashola, authored by the former federal commissioner, Chief Femi Okunnu and wife of the former Attorney-General and commissioner for justice in Lagos, Gbemi Shasore in that order.

Lagos State Government, during its meeting with National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Petroleum Tankers Drivers (PTD), NARTO and other unions in Ikeja yesterday, said it was time to set a limit to how long tanker queue could go and give respite to other road users.

Commissioner for Transportation Kayode Opeifa said they had agreed at the meeting that 48 hours should be given to tanker drivers queuing between 200 and 300 meters to the fuel depots to leave Lagos pending the availability of the commodity.

Opeifa said information available from the marketers revealed that there was no fuel in the depots to be lifted by the tankers and that as such; some of the tankers should leave Lagos.

According to Fashola, “I think that we have received the short end of the stick as a people (residents of Lagos). Lagos is one of the many few states that are bounded by lagoon and ocean on the side.

But yet that is the place (Lagos) that I think that we have been most treated unfairly by the central government. “The central government took over Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS) in Lagos Island axis of the state, of which it is a manager and not a landlord. It belongs to Lagos.

It was originally crown land. It was given to the central government to manage. And it is alarming that the manager has started selling the land left in its care.”

Continuing, he said: “And I have told all those that they sold them to that they bought nothing. The seller has no document to offer. And I have told those who bought it to go and collect their money back from the seller.

“As long as I live, I will fight the battle to collect the land from the central government. It is a national monument named after Tafawa Balewa and that is what some people in the country own. And I have said to them that if you want something like this, go and build your own,” he said.

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