- Governor Akinwunmi Ambode says says whatever happens at the Apapa port affects revenue allocations to other states of the federation
- Ambode wants the federal government to revive existing ports on other states so as to ease traffic gridlocks in Lagos
- The governor announces vacancies for 1,000 teachers
Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos, on Wednesday, July 25, appealed to the federal government to save the state of perennial traffic congestion in the Apapa axis where the port is located.
Ambode asked the federal government to do this by reviving existing ports in other states of the country adding that this can bring a permanent solution to the challenge faced by people of Lagos.
Speaking at third quarter town hall meeting held in Ibeju Lekki local government area, the governor said the recent chaos witnessed in Apapa was beyond traffic issues.
According to him, concerted efforts must be made to revamp moribund ports.
The governor added that beyond getting other ports up and running, the issue of tankers queuing up to lift petroleum products from ‘tank farms’ in Apapa had been a major challenge.
He said this act by the tanker drivers damage road infrastructure in the area, which he described as inimical to the economic growth of not just the state, but the country.
"This issue has become perennial and in the last six years, it's always been there, it comes and goes, but the challenge is to be able to find a permanent solution and in that reason Mr President had directed the vice president to come and see what the situation is and to actually give us a permanent solution.
“We are grateful Mr President; we believe strongly that every layer of government should collaborate to be able to resolve this Apapa crisis.
"But we all must know that Apapa crisis is more than traffic issues. That is where all states depend on for revenue through customs because the revenue is shared at FAAC.
“If anything goes wrong in the port, whatever they get from Federal Allocation Account Committee (FAAC) could reduce,” Governor Ambode said calling the congestion in Apapa a national issue that needs urgent attention.
Ambode suggested that oil pipelines should be revived to discourage the trend of thousands of trucks coming from other parts of the country to lift petroleum products from Apapa.
"It is bad that we still use truck to lift petroleum products from Apapa to other parts of the country.
“As it is now, other ports in Nigeria must begin to work immediately to decongest gridlocks in Lagos. Whatever has led to continual use of trucks to lift fuel, which is, vandalism of pipeline should be addressed immediately.
"We believe that this will allow the roads to become free. We don't need to continuously use tax payers’ money to build road that were destroyed by tankers. We call on the Minister of Petroleum and Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to work towards reviving the pipelines," he said.
Ambode further raised concern about the approval for the development of tank farms in the Ijegun area of Lagos, saying that as much as the state supports redistribution of tank farms, such should be located in areas that are not populated.
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"We don't need tank farms within Lagos metropolis anymore. There are 68 tank farms in Apapa alone. That is a serious danger waiting to happen. Beyond Apapa, they have approved tank farms in Ijegun axis and that is where we have huge population.
"We need to redistribute tank farm establishment to outer borders and other parts. This is what we believe should be done at this moment to free Lagos roads," he said.
He said his government was fulfilling its promises to the people as he listed some achievements of his administration.
Governor Ambode also announced the commencement of recruitment of 1,000 teachers in the state, adding that more would be recruited as the need arises.
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