Residents of Apapa community under the aegis of the Apapa GRA Residents Association (AGRA) have lashed out at the federal government over dilapidating public infrastructures in the area.
General Manager of AGRA, Paul Odey, said the state of roads and other public infrastructures in the port city has become “very alarming”.
Odey said several lives and huge financial resources are lost daily as a result of bad roads and the activities of tank farm operators in Apapa.
“Apart from lives lost consistently, the financial implication is alarming too and you can’t breathe fresh air anymore. Over 500 business around Creek Road, for instance, are collapsing one after the other, because of the activities of tankers which have taken over the roads, as a result of two major tank farms, the Falawiyo Energy and Lister Oil and Gas”, he said.
He said that in the event of emergency in the Apapa area, rescue effort will become impossible especially due to the blockade of the roads around Creek and Liverpool roads.
“In the event of emergency, it will be a total disaster, fire fighters can’t get through, medical evacuation will be impossible. It is so curious why the Federal Government should grant licenses to operate tank farms in residential areas like Creek and Liverpool roads. These people should be removed”, he said.
Despite huge revenue generated into the coffers of the three tiers of government through the Lagos Port Complex and Tin Can Island Port Complex, both in Apapa, port users and residents have continued to lament the poor state of federal roads leading in and out of the community.
The Apapa-Oshodi expressway which is a major artery linking the airport and the seaport as well as the ever-busy Wharf road have been in terrible conditions in almost a decade without any concrete move by government to repair them.
Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, has in the past three months written two separate memos to the presidency to get the federal government pay attention to the poor state of the roads yet no concrete action has been taken.
The first memo to the Presidency by the governor of was written on September 17, 2012 and directed to Vice President Mohammed Namadi Sambo.
The memo sought Sambo’s approval for Fashola to make a presentation to the National Economic Council (NEC) which he chairs, to call attention to the deterioration of Apapa and the urgent need for its regeneration. But in his response, Vice President Sambo advised Fashola to send his letter directly to President Jonathan.
Fashola consequently wrote to the President on November 1, 2012 but is yet to receive any response.
Fashola had said in the memo: “In summary, the memo has identified (1) the operation of entry/exit into the Apapa Port and (2) the state of disrepair or connecting roads, as the biggest challenges, and suggestions have been proposed which require action by agencies and organs of the Federal Government, for there to be enduring relief to the citizens.”
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