Adeyinka Aroyewun,NOS COMTUA.
Story by Dili Utomi.
COMTUA AND LPAN PROFFER SOLUTION TO THE APAPA TRAFFIC GRIDLOCK.
The Apapa traffic gridlock seems to be defying all solutions as it has become much more worrisome and seemingly intractable.
Eng. Olajide Oduyoye, LASTMA GM.
The General Manager of the Lagos State Traffic Management Agency (LASTMA), Eng. Olajide Oduyoye when asked of his opinion on a radio show monitored by www.greatalternativenetwork.com.ng says that in his assessment of the situation within the Ports corridors that in the last three weeks, the traffic situation has not been as good as anticipated. He says that for the ETO inspired call up system to work that all stakeholders should come together as it cannot work on its own.
The National Organising Secretary (NOS) of the Council Of Maritime Transport Unions and Associations (COMTUA,) Adeyinka Aroyewun who was also on the show says that from mile to coconut, the trailers have elected to form three lanes thereby exacerbating the problem. Mr. Aroyewun suggested that there is a gulf between the traffic policy and the implementation.
Godwin Ikeji, President of the LPAN.
Mr. Godwin Ikeji of the Logistics Practitioners Association of Nigeria (LPAN) says that the situation is becoming worse as he opined that the ETO should not have been incorporated without the input of transporters as this has seemingly rendered it dead on arrival as Mr. Aroyewun agreed with the submission of the LPAN chairman. Mr. Oduyoye countered that by saying that stakeholders should seek for solutions and not engage in blame game.
Engineer Oduyoye said that experience shows that the drivers of the trailers and tanker seem not to want to obey any traffic rule as they sometimes remove control barriers at night and move into the corridors without guidance. He says that they are not getting the necessary support of the stakeholders, he suggested that every truck should be equipped with a tracker.
The LPAN chairman further noted that trucks help in the servicing of the nation’s economy and very important in our lives. He says that he supports any trucker who contravenes any law to be made to face the wrath of the law, but that the traffic managers should always do the right thing.
Mr. Aroyewun also said that it seems that towing of vehicles is the only enforcement agenda that the traffic managers have, though he agreed that in any situation you will have a rebellious few, but that the enforcement team should not be selective in carrying out their duty as tanker drivers do become unruly sometimes.
Eng. Oduyoye said that there is an element of truth in the accusations against tanker and tanker drivers as any attempt to get them to behave results to the downing of tools be as they exloit the fact of their supply of fuel to the nation.
Mr. Aroyewun wants the enforcement of rules to be holistic and systematic as Mr Ikeji calls on all hands to be on deck, proper infrastructural development and honest application of rules.
COMTUA also made a few recommendations to ease the traffic situation along the Ports corridors which takes into account these basic considerations:
The rain is here with us, decay and road construction on the axis particularly on the out bound section, that is Tin Can- mile 2,
Volume of traffic, the prevalence of wet cargo trucks/tankers due to the cluttering of tank farms in the territory of Trinity, Beach land, and Tin Can.
In cognisance of these, there arise the need for a special arrangement for a fair and conducive business environment.
In considering of this proposal, two locations in the axis are of interest as noted, these are:
(a) Sunrise bus stop- merger point and
(b) Otto wharf- de-merging point.
At Sunrise bus stop, all the traffic should merge into one lane/ side as only the out bound lane Tincan to mile 2 is motorable. Also most often this is the terminal/ decision point for tankers.
At Otto Wharf, the traffic separates , at this point also trucks are admitted for Tincan Port onwards.
There then arise the need for proper coordination of traffic at these points of intersection. This will take care of periodic release of eligible trucks into the corridor, ensuring due compliance to the lane management and orderliness.
It is recommended that on the in bound corridor of the axis,
A) Containerised trucks ie trucks heading to the Port shall maintain the left side of the road,
B) Wet cargo trucks/ tankers shall maintain the right side on the corridor,
C) The center shall be kept free for out bound trucks or emergency.
The service lane shall be left for other road users, all pre-gate vehicles, or vehicles on other destinations
For the corridor to accommodate these, time allocation/period shall apply for various operation. Thus is suggested;
10am – 4.00pm shall be for movement of dully called up export trucks from transit parks to Tin Can.
4.00pm – 10.00am flat beds and holding bays empty containers shall access the corridor with their due call up.
Total prohibition of , use of the service lane, Sunrise or any other point for admission of trucks for Tin Can call up, use of service lane for parking purpose by any kind of truck, except for purpose as recommended.
Equip the interested man power with the ability to co-ordinate the process with the enforcement team of men of integrity, this is essential for the success of the plan.
With these it is expected there are chances to mitigate the challenges.