Traffic Congestion: Lagos To Test Run Blue Rail Line in December 2020

Benjamin Omoike

Lagos State Government has vowed to test run the blue rail line project by December 2020 and ensure its completion, so as to take the pressure off the roads, which has become a nightmare to motorists due to traffic congestion.

The state Commissioner of Information and Strategy Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, who disclosed this at an interactive session with journalists to mark the 200 days of Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu in office, said the red rail line project is also being advertised, saying many international companies are already showing interest in the project.

Omotoso flanked by the Commissioner for Transportation Dr. Frederic Oladeinde and his Special Duties counterpart Dr. Wale Ahmed, among others, said various steps were being taken to aggressively address the challenge of bad roads and ease movement of commuters across the state.

Within the period under review, Omotoso said, ‘’Eight Multi-national construction firms were mobilised to carry out massive repair on critical highways in what we christened Operation 116.

‘’This was followed by extensive palliative and maintenance works, especially by the Public Works Corporation, which has rehabilitated hundreds of roads and cleared several drainage channels in various parts of the state.                 

‘’This was taken further with the flag-off of the reconstruction and upgrading of strategic roads in Ikorodu. The project comprises 6.05 kilometres Phase One road from Itamaga to Ewu Elepe town; 7.8 kilometres Owutu-Agric-Ishawo road Phase One and Bola Tinubu-Igbogbo-Imota road.

‘’Interestingly, the Victoria Island, Lekki Traffic Circulation project on Oniru axis was also flagged-off the same day. The project, being undertaken by Lagos State Government and Access Bank under a Public Infrastructure Improvement Partnership arrangement, would ease traffic considerably around Victoria Island, Oniru and Lekki axiis.”

According to him, Public Works Corporation, High-tech, Chinese Construction Company (CCECC), Metropolitan Construction Company, Arab Contractors, Julius Berger, and other contractors are currently working on the state’s roads.

To strengthen the drive for a multimodal transport system, he said the governor also launched the Uber Boat water transportation service.

Harping on the health sector, he said the present administration is bringing about a renaissance in the state’s public health sector.

He said, ‘’Under Pillar H, which stands for Health and Sanitation, the 149-bed Maternal and Childcare Centre, MCC, in Alimosho General Hospital was commissioned. The specialist centre, facilitated through the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals, is evidence of the working partnership between the Federal and the State Governments.

‘’The facility is equipped with ultra-modern equipment that aid prompt delivery of maternal and child care services. Presently, the administration is working hard towards the completion of more MCCs. In fact, the Badagry and Epe MCCs are nearing completion.

‘’The latest of the several people friendly medical interventions in the State is the free surgical intervention programme for residents, which was organised in partnership with a non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Benjamin Olowojebutu Foundation. It comprised free surgeries for residents suffering from Lipoma, Hernia, Fibroid and Breast Lumps, as well as free dental and general health screening.’’

According to him, a free medical initiative tagged “Healthy Bee Project”, a collaborative effort of the State Government and a Non-Governmental Organisation, BOSKOH Lagos Healthcare Mission International (HMI), had earlier been held.

‘’Through the initiative, over 21, 000 people were screened at seven centres over a period of six days; 1417 free surgeries, including eye surgery for children and adults, were conducted. Most of the beneficiaries were children and the elderly,” he concluded.

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