Many Lagosians and residents of Lagos have one thing in common-that is they know that Mr. Fashola has been doing a lot to improve the traffic situation in Lagos. There is no doubt about that. I saw that myself.
There is a network of road that is now being constructed from orile that will lead to badagry. It’s going to be about 10 lanes including rail network. I say bravo to the plan.
One sad thing about the situation in Lagos is the bureaucratic problems imposed by the Federal Government. The useless Federal Government has been hindering progress in Lagos. Sometimes the argument is about whether the Lagos State government has the jurisdiction to execute certain projects or not.
You will never understand the madness of Nigerian politics. The useless Federal Ministry of Road and Transport or is it Ministry of Works and Housing has refused to develop or expand Lagos roads. Altogether they have refused to maintain the roads. And then a certain Fashola decided not to follow the way of the ineptitudes before him only for these Federal gangsters to come and stand in the way.
I am hoping that these bottlenecks have been addressed and removed otherwise the Jonathan government should continue to see itself as a disgrace.
The other problem that people are downplaying but which I think has affected the development of Lagos is the Tinubu factor. I have no praises for Tinubu for supporting the candidature of Fashola then and now. I don’t care about his opinions on Fashola. I don’t want people getting my opinions wrong. I have no single word of praise for any Nigerian politician.
Politicians are public servants and they must serve. It is just the Nigerian factor that has distorted people’s minds and opinions about the meaning of public services. Politicians must serve the people and ensure that the society is running smoothly. They are not there to be praised or worship. But the way things have happened in Nigeria has affected the way we look at politicians. Hence it is very easy for people to praise Fashola. They compare him to the idle minds before him.
I have no word for Tinubu except to tell him to go and sit down. Let him stop disturbing the peace and progress of Lagos. Indeed Nigerian politics is such that gives room, space and power to godfatherism, hence the grip of Tinubu on Lagos to this day. Few years from now, he will be history. All the people who think they are important yesterday, where are they today? Nigerian politicians do not learn from history.
But the greatest source of problem regarding Lagos (traffic, roads and other issues) is the people of Lagos. Majority of Lagos drivers have no clues about driving rules and regulations. They drive like idiots. It’s a racing game for them. First to reach, first to go. They don’t know the rules at junctions; they don’t know the rules on the expressway. You will hardly find a Lagos driver giving you way when you have indicated with you blinking light that you want to turn right or left or that you want to change lanes. They call it blocking.
Lagos drivers don’t know the meaning of lane driving. In some places, the government has repaired the roads, drawn lanes and all that. Where there are 3 lanes, Lagos drivers will ignore the lanes and change it to 5 or 6 lanes. Somewhere ahead they will all meet and the traffic will become jammed!
Many of the traffic situations in Lagos are not only as a result of over population but also because of extremely bad driving. If Lagos drivers use their lanes appropriately and follow driving rules, they will prevent up to 70% of the unnecessary traffic jams in Lagos. It is sad because they are ignorant and they don’t know the rules. Therefore they don’t understand why they have such traffic situations.
A journey of 20 minuets in Lagos can take 4 hours. Once I drove from Festac to Iyana Ipaja and it took 3hours and 45 minutes. In other countries that journey will take me just 20 or 25 minutes.
But it is worth mentioning that some roads are still very bad and they have also contributed to the menace of driving in Lagos. Iyana Ipaja by Abesan Housing Estate is the worst place in Lagos. One day we drove about 50metres in a time of 45 minutes!!! This is not an exaggeration. Residents say it could take one hour to just get through Abesan Gate!!!
It’s a region of about 10-15metres only. But the motorists approaching could be thousands and that causes serious problems sometimes. You only need to be trapped at that gate to understand the nature of the problem. Cars are still for minutes and hours. The road is bad and the people drive like mad people. But if they maintain like 2 lanes only for every road approaching that junction, the problem will be less even with the bad road network. But when more than 10 lanes meet at the same point, tell me, who goes first?
At berger area on Apapa Oshodi Express Way, it is simply a death trap. I won’t say more.
There are many bad roads in Lagos but the people are optimistic that given another 4 years and at his rate of achievements, the government of Fashola can achieve more and alleviate the sufferings of Lagosians.
But Nigerians must know that there is a need to provide jobs and incentives in other parts of Nigeria. The gradual decongesting of Lagos will be a needed avenue to ensure that the infrastructures are not over stretched.
With or Beyond Fashola future governments in Lagos must have long term goals to take care of the problems in Lagos in terms of roads, housing, schools and water. Obviously there are other things that must be done to ensure that Nigerians in general can live a good and happy life.
One day Nigerian roads will be like this one below