June 12, 2024

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Has the monster in Apapa traffic gridlock acquired immortality?

3 min read

Typical Apapa traffic gridlock

Forensic investigation has identified major factors responsible for the Apapa traffic gridlock which include such things as, the inefficiency of the port concessionaire, neglect of the use of petroleum pipelines and the numerous tank farms exclusively at the Port axis.

These and many other causative factors were unraveled at the two-day summit organized by the Pen Media under the auspices of Maritime Journalists Association of Nigeria, MAJAN, in conjunction with other stakeholders.

Participants at the summit which took place at Rockview Hotel, Apapa, Lagos with the theme, “Apapa Traffic Gridlock: Has It Defied All Solutions? severally and collectively condemned the slow delivery system by the terminal operators in their operations.

The forum concluded that the concessionaire at the port was far from ready to deploy Integrated Management System, IMS, to make for smooth uninterrupted operations which will eventually save time and make transactions at the terminal less cumbersome.

Also identified as culprit was the persistent failure of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, to repairs the damaged pipelines and make them serviceable again.

They reasoned that the failure by NNPC informed the astronomical increase in the number of oil trucks making distributions even to the farthest part of the country by road instead of through pipeline or rail.

These findings were articulated by the Registrar, National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders, NIGAFF Academy, Francis Omotosho, who was of the opinion that before a fool proof solution could be proffered to a challenge, its root cause must first be identified.

Another major culprit identified by Omotosho was the continuing operations of tank farms at the port corridor which strongly raised the doubt if Environmental Impact Assessment, EIA, was ever conducted for the state government to have approved development of so many tank farms on the Apapa axis.

Francis Omotosho however added the father of all malaise capable to ruin any society is, deep seated corruption. He said corruption was another strong factor responsible for the bedlam often witnessed on the roads in and out of the Apapa port.

Mr. Francis Omotosho, Registrar, NIGAFF Academy

He reasoned that since corruption has permeated all facets of our national life as a sovereign nation, the battle to get something not crooked from a very crooked environment no doubt will be harder but with persistent and consistence for what is fair and just, the society might be redeemed and return to the path of sanity in the not too distant future.

President of Maritime Journalists Association of Nigeria, MAJAN, Comrade Ray Ugochukwu during his paper presentation went into chronology of the time the seed of the gridlock was said to have been sown in 2006.

Ugochukwu said the poorly conceived concession and its bad execution had given rise to the ubiquitous gridlock that has so far defied numerous solutions proffered for ages.

However, Omotosho hinted on possible solutions to end the gridlock noting that government must revive pipeline system, relocate the tank farms away from the Apapa port corridor and government should provide efficient and cost effective public transport system to ease out traffic bedlam which has made roads to the port very notorious.

He also noted that concessionaires must be ready for the operation or be ready to be booted out of the system.

Truck operators were enjoined to, as a matter of must provide standard trucks while government should make provision for refilling energy stations close to the port road.

The Pen newspaper is a publication of Maritime Journalists Association of Nigeria (MAJAN).

By-: Ayoola Olaitan

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