Sanwo-Olu Train Tracking – Tribune Online


Lagos, the economic capital of Nigeria and my home state, is quite a story. After playing football, hustling with drums, serving as a Man O’War officer, working at Mile 12, etc., I left the state in 1995 and never came back. Lagos in the 80s and early 90s was a crazy enclave – a young man once burst a public pipe and started selling water, and people were queuing and paying without scruple – but there perhaps had a method to his madness. To live in any part of Lagos, you had to be steel. The city is not made for the faint-hearted. Pickpockets operated with gentle precision, and sympathy for the victims was intertwined with imprecations about the stupidity of negligent people. There was plenty of money to be made in Lagos, and plenty to spend and return to your farm and your family in faraway lands, completely bankrupt.

“Ketu Ojota Mile 12! Yaba Oyingbo Eko!” the bandleaders would yell in their unmistakable, twisted voices forged in marijuana smoke, and you would jump into the Molue or danfo that never really expected anyone. orchestra never had “money” and always warned: “Wole pelu change eo, enter with your change! Often, we (my father and I) were in Idumota from 5:30 in the morning. He was a man of business, a well-known supplier of soap to the police, and we knew almost every notable police formation in Lagos: Lion Building, Yaba, Police College, Ikeja (an Igbo woman sold eba with fantastic egusi inside the college , right by the door), etc. Teenagers weren’t chopping off people’s heads to make money in those days. And, for all the craziness – bad boys could suddenly kick your shoes off and pretend you had borrowed them!—there was running water everywhere. The khaki boys didn’t mess with the water.

Since the return to civilian rule in 1999, the Center of Excellence has not quite reached the height required. For example, a city of its status should have an underground rail system. But there have been quite a few changes over the past few years and, according to TS Eliot, it’s not worth forgetting. I note that while his predecessors weren’t quite committed to the O’dua group because of their false conception of Lagos exceptionalism, Sanwo-Olu has come over to the group, which claims to be in the process of being restructured to improve its performance, achieve sustainable growth, and transform into a world-class conglomerate in no time. For him, however, the company must explore new areas of opportunity. This attitude is, I believe, entirely correct, because the South-West States have much to gain from regional integration schemes. In this regard, it is remarkable to note that last year, Sanwo-Olu and Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State signed a Memorandum of Understanding on joint infrastructure development in border communities between the States.

Undoubtedly, it is profitable for Lagos and Ogun to work together to achieve greater industrialization and profitable development, taking advantage of the recently signed African Continental Free Trade Agreement (ACFTA). The potential gains are huge, including efficient port logistics through better coordinated call systems where Ogun provides holding bays/parks for trailers heading to Apapa ports to ease traffic congestion at Lagos. Collaboration is crucial in physical planning and urban development, slum regeneration, environmental challenges such as flooding, dredging, waste management and pollution control, and cooperation in revenue and waste management. taxes, especially in border towns. There is much to be gained from effective and efficient census and data sharing of citizens residing in border urban areas, as well as efficient and regular income tax remittances from Ogun residents working in the Lagos State.

In August last year, Sanwo-Olu bolstered the Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) fleet with 102 units of locally assembled compactor trucks and 100 units of waste bins. Its objective was to reduce waste disposal times within the metropolis. The trucks were assembled by LAWMA technicians in collaboration with Dangote Sinotruk Manufacturing and were designed to facilitate the removal of waste from production points to transfer-loading stations. Quite commendably, they took on the ongoing challenge of liquids dripping from garbage trucks. The launch of locally assembled waste disposal trucks is key to creating a cleaner and healthier Lagos. I note that the state-owned composting facility in Odogunyan is being revived and new transfer and loading stations are being set up to facilitate efficient disposal of solid waste. However, I instruct the governor of Lagos to move from assembly to manufacturing. There is a lot to be gained from this.

The foregoing observations, however, have been made only in passing. I focus on the modest shift to rail transport. I don’t regret the “Ketu Ojota Mile 12!” exponents of their existence, but the mad rush associated with rickety buses is not a sign of modernity. Road rage is also not regular by Okada’s rampaging racers. Like many Nigerians, I believe that Lagos needs major interventions in the transport sector to actualize the smooth movement of millions of people on a daily basis. To achieve this goal, Babatunde Fashola deployed transit buses and created lanes for them, to national applause. But if developments since then are any indication, that move only scratched the surface. The best thing to do is to implement and exploit the gains of multimodal transport.

In this regard, it is excellent news that Sanwo-Olu plans to stick to the fourth quarter 2022 completion target for the Red and Blue Line rail projects, a key part of the framework to reduce traffic congestion. and ensure interconnectivity in different parts of the state. When completed, the 37-kilometre Red Line railway project will link Agbado to Marina, while the 27.5-kilometre Blue Line railway project will run from Okokomaiko to Marina. Recently, the Governor traveled to Winconsin, USA to acquire trains for the projects. I know the history of the trains: I don’t need a sermon from the opponents. I only urge Sanwo-Olu to make the proposed fourth continental bridge a reality and prepare the ground for the metro. It would be so beautiful to see.

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