Chairman, Lagos House of Assembly Committee on Transportation, Honourable Temitope Adewale, has called on residents to be patient with the state government over the ban of motorcycles and tricycles in some parts of the state.
Hon Adewale, representing Ifako Ijaiye constituency I, said that the traffic law was passed in 2012 and that the people should not misinterpret it.
He said, “On August 2012 they passed a bill and the traffic law was made to ban motorcycles. I think it is imperative to say this and to state clearly to the press that misinterpretation of what is said or read cannot lead to a misconception of the law.
“So if the law was passed before and it worked very well then even in more stringent ways than now, we are saying let’s revisit the law because the last administration did not do much regarding the implementation of the law on the transport sector.
“If his Excellency Babajide Sanwoolu has made it very clear that part of his agenda in the Themes programme is transportation and traffic solutions, then he means well for the state.
“It is not because he wants to witch hunt or he wants to get back at people, or he wants to push people who voted him into office out of jobs no.
“He is trying to make Lagos state safer and better to attain the megacity status.”
Piqued by the turn of event, the lawmaker Adewale hinted why the ban is necessary.
“The law is straightforward. We are restricting them for these reasons; have you been to the general hospital lately or the orthopedic hospital?
” You will weep, there are lots of innocent lives that have been destroyed by these riders, what we are saying is that it has to be regulated appropriately.
“You cannot have people just come in from one place or the other or one state or country into Lagos because there is free access or movement to live anywhere you want, they come in on Friday and pick up a bike on Monday.
“There are laws. You must have a riders tag, and your bike must be properly registered; these laws have not been followed. The e-commerce industry, the likes of the Opay, Gokada, Max Okada and the rest of them, they are not registered.
Reacting to the claim that public officers in the executive arm have often been accused of deliberately relaxing laws when elections are close and that enforcement barely swings back to force when elections are over, Temitope notes that:
“The last administration went into the waste management body to infuse some few rapid changes, do a test run and some few experiments regarding the environmental laws, which brought about the Vision Scape concept and it backfired, it didn’t work properly and we started witnessing what we saw as far back as 1998.
” When we had dirt all over the place, we had refuse dumped in the middle of the roads, you don’t see them today they all gone, and the LAWMA is working efficiently well that is because when laws are being put in place and there are stringent repercussions for breaking the law and there is proper enforcement it worked.
“So if the Governor Mr Babajide Sanwoolu is looking into the transport law and made it clear from day one that his themes agenda has to do with transport and traffic solutions, then it is important for us to do it.
“If the last government had made it easy by restricting LASTMA from doing their duties and taking off the powers that allow them to operate and arrest and then we had more traffic situations and you will realise that the past administration could not do much about infrastructural maintenance.
“Yes they had a little bit of infrastructural development but then the ones that we had on ground, there were so much infrastructural decay and this Babajide Sanwoolu’s government have taken into consideration that all infrastructures most especially roads must be put in place and the snags we witness now is tied to void of road maintenance in time past.
“There is so much we got to do on the roads at the same time because the yearnings of the people have gotten to the Governor.
“I also enjoy taking bikes but not without safety; sometimes I want to get to where I am going faster, a time I am tired of staying in the car, sometimes I am going on inner roads that are not quite good, yet to be fixed by the government.
“Sometimes there is heavy traffic, at times, there is so much traffic because we are fixing roads daily but this is the little things that we have to bear with as the people. Nobody creates traffic; we create it -traffic jam is caused by human and vehicular movements, who are those behind the vehicular movements, it is we.
“There is a transport sector law. There is transport reform law, there are laws that would enable you to start businesses within the state. When you want to test the waters just like you had the ‘Uber’, Uber came and ran on our waterways as a test run, now they are in the process of getting approval and it worked.
“It is the same Governor that said he is going to work with all these branded organizations of motorbikes, was the same one that said he is going to be working with them – the Gokada, Gomax, Opay all went to him and he was impressed, look it is a welcome idea it is an integral part of the transportation system.
“It is because we are trying to regulate it. Some bikes would run only strictly within gated estates; they are not banned.
“There are bikes that would run inner roads; they are not banned. The restriction means we don’t want you here at all until things are being perfected, perfect the law, perfect your documentations, and then we give you rules and regulations to abide by.
“I will appeal to Lagosians to please be patient and trust for once the process of getting things done for the Lagos State Government.
“I am not the Commissioner for transportation, and I wouldn’t speak for the ministry of transportation. I would speak in a capacity as an honourable member making laws to soothe the people and their everyday needs.
“I represent the people. What I am saying to you is that this decision is taken in good faith to achieve a better and greater transport sector”, he said.