APFFLON DECRIES HARDSHIP TRAILING THE BAN OF MOTORCYCLES ON LAGOS ROADS
Following the ban on commercial motorcycles and Keke operators in Lagos metropolis by the Lagos State Government recently, the African Association of Professional Freight Forwarders and Logistics of Nigeria (APFFLON), has criticised the hardship that the sudden decision has brought to residents, describing the action as impulsive.
In a chat with the Prestige Blended Magazine in his office recently, the National President of the Association, Otumba Frank Ogunojemite , said that the association was in total support of the Okada ban, but is yet to come to terms with its urgency, he added that the decision was taken and implemented without the government putting in place palliative measures to cushion the effect of the ban.
In his words”, APFFLON is not in any way against the ban because of the rising state of insecurity in the state. It is good Lagos State emulates other mega cities of the world in reorganizing its transportation system, as that alone will go a long way to restoring sanity in the state. The influx of people from across the country into the state, especially those who have no specific abode has really dealt a dazing blow on the state as open defecation has become the order of the day. The ban on Okada will go a long way to restoring sanity in the metropolis”.
“The recklessness of Okada Operators has claimed hundreds of lives in the state as most of the cyclists are uninformed and do not obey traffic rules, that alone is a big problem on its own”.
Aside the advantages of the ban, the National President of the Association went ahead to condemn the urgency saying that the government should have engaged stakeholders before implementing its decision, adding that it landed so hard on residents as many now trek very long distances to their workplaces. He pointed out that the sudden action would in no doubt have an adverse effect on the economy, citing great loss of man-hours and weariness after a long walk which will also go a long way to hampering efficiency.
When asked of his opinion in the area of palliative measures, he suggested cable transportation, and since the state licensed a couple of more organized outfits like O-Pay and others, The Government should have retained the services of the Operators even as it added colour to transportation in terms of neatness and conduct. I really thought that the state government should have set up a task force to regulate their operations, okay more of such outfits, and compel them and all the commercial vehicles to always train and retrain, collate their data and FORCE them to embark on COMPREHENSIVE insurance scheme to march with international standard. All these would have been put in place before the enforcement of the ban to cushion the effect.
” For example, we freight forwarders,port workers and government agencies like customs, NAFDAC, SON, etc can not get to TinCan area without a motor bike, unless the person treks from Mile2 to TinCan, no Shuttle buses because of the Perculiar state of that corridor, the ongoing rehabilitation work on that axis has compounded the stress as contractors, tankers and trucks laden with containers restrict vehicles from plying the corridor, that is a major issue as no one knows when the road will be open for road users.”
” In 2017, the Lagos State Government embarked on setting up Cable Transport system which would have improved Transportation in the metropolis, as it is seen in most Mega Cities of the Globe; but the project never saw the light of the day, such laudable project would have also gone a long way to help alleviate the sufferings of residents in a time like this. Besides, APPFLON commends the Lagos State Government for the recent inauguration of ferries on waterways to Transport residents to designated waterfronts, saying that it is a move in the right direction.
Otumba Ogunojemite appealed to Lagos State Government to up its game on security now that the ban on Okada and tricycle has been enforced, he lamented that the rate of crime will increase since it is obvious that a good number of people have lost their means of livelihood,as some of them might resort to criminalities. For that reason, he emphasized the need for job creation and an urgent need to put in place skill acquisition centers in almost all the Local Council Areas.