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Business

Traffic likely to return to Apapa as FG withdraws Presidential Task Force

The Federal Government has withdrawn the Presidential Task Force from Apapa road.

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FG records N6 trillion loss across sectors due to Lagos gridlock

Motorists and road-users have expressed apprehension that traffic may be returning to Apapa following the withdrawal of the Presidential Task Force and traffic management being handed over to the Lagos State Government.

However, the Lagos Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) is yet to take control of the axis 3 days after the handover by the Federal Government.

According to a media report from the Nations, it was learnt the decision to hand over the continued enforcement of law and order to Lagos was taken at a meeting with the representatives of the Vice President, Nigeria Port Authority, the Federal Road Safety Corps, and other federal agencies last Wednesday.

It can be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated a Presidential Taskforce headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Comrade Kayode Opeifa as Vice Chairman to restore sanity on the Apapa axis following the total collapse of law and order which led to indiscriminate parking of heavy articulated vehicles like trucks, tankers, containerized heavy-duty vehicles on roads leading to Apapa and its environs.

The Presidential Taskforce restored some level of normalcy on the axis with the disappearance of trucks and tankers on the bridges and roads on Ikorodu road, Iganmu road, Eko Bridge and other axis leading to Apapa.

Opeifa, in one of his statements last year, said that the team was able to clear Apapa of gridlock, has succeeded in instilling discipline and improving the traffic situation in Apapa.

The taskforce team was able to ensure easy access to Apapa for the residents, business owners, and other stakeholders.

But there have been serious concerns among stakeholders and residents over the ability of LASTMA to sustain normalcy and build on the success recorded by the presidential task force.

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They lamented the traffic management agency was yet to take control of the axis days after the decision was taken and the chaotic traffic situation has begun to resurface.

A resident, Seun Adeoye, said: “We are afraid that the situation in Apapa may get worse with this decision. This is a problem that the military couldn’t solve. Now businesses are returning to the axis due to the normalcy returned by the presidential task force.’’

*Before the advent of the Osinbajo-led Presidential Taskforce, corruption had taken over in the axis. But the task force men were able to deal with its strategy put in place. I don’t think LASTMA is prepared for this onerous task.”

Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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    Business

    Customs Apapa Command generates revenue of N65.4 billion in April

    This indicates a 64% increase in collection and an unprecedented record that has never been achieved in the history of Apapa Area Command.

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    Border closure: Amid N5bn daily revenue, Customs officials lament allowance slash  

    The Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) Apapa Area Command has announced a revenue of N65,463,398,355.85 for the month of April—an increase of N25,585,561,139.92 compared to the same period last year.

    This was disclosed by Comptroller Ibrahim Yusuf, Area Controller of Apapa command, in a press briefing on Thursday.

    What Ibrahim Yusuf is saying

    “This indicates a 64% increase in collection and an unprecedented record that has never been achieved in the history of Apapa Area Command.

    In line with the provision of extant laws, trade guidelines and enforcement of government fiscal policy measures, the command was able to further strengthen its anti-smuggling operations against economic saboteurs through credible intelligence-driven operations.

    This led to the seizure of 4×40 feet containers laden with unregistered pharmaceuticals (674 cartons of tramadol tablets in 225mg and 120mg, and 805 cartons of codeine syrup in 100ml) at APMT and SIFAX 3 bonded terminal respectively.

    Other items seized in the period under review include: two containers of unprocessed wood and one container of scrap copper wire,” he said.

    He added that the progress the Apapa Command made in the month of April was possible due to the resilience of the officers, citing that the Command had taken steps to ensure efficient revenue collection by creating an enabling environment for legitimate businesses to thrive.

    What you should know

    Recall Nairametrics reported that the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Apapa Command stated earlier that it generated a revenue of N159.58 billion in the first quarter of 2021.

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    Business

    Why prices of Iron Ore, others may rise soon

    The underdeveloped mining of iron ore in Nigeria has led the nation to import the mineral which can be produced locally.

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    Iron ore is an important commodity currently in high demand, due to population and infrastructure growth in developing countries, especially Nigeria.

    The underdeveloped mining of iron ore in Nigeria has led the nation to import the mineral which can be produced locally. This development is expected to lead to an increase in the price of the commodity, as the nation relies solely on imported iron ore.

    Why is the increase imminent

    A surge in steel consumption is certain, as the world emerges from its pandemic-induced slump. This is set to drive iron ore to an unprecedented high as the biggest miners struggle to keep up with the frenzied pace of demand.

    An Estate Surveyor and Developer, Tunji Lawal, told Nairametrics that expectations are that benchmark prices can get to $200 a ton – topping the record $194 hit more than a decade ago.

    According to him, this is happening as Chinese steel producers ramp up production in defiance of government attempts to rein in output to control the industry’s carbon emissions.

    He said, “That’s tightening an iron ore market that hadn’t fully recovered from a supply shock more than two years ago.

    Iron ore prices could go higher in the short-term and exceeding $200 a ton is definitely possible and that will also push the price up in Nigeria. The price here, which is about N325,000/ton (8mm), is bound to go northward and may increase by N100,000 within a month.”

    He added that the increasing demand had been boosting steel prices from Asia to North America.

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    The hike is not limited to steel, as other building materials are also expected to rise further.

    Meanwhile, Dangote Cement, which increased from N2,600 to N3,800 barely a month ago, stands at N4,000/bag and still counting. The price may rise over N4,000 depending on market forces.

    Lafarge Cement and BUA Cement also increased from N2,400 and N2,250 to N3,600 and N3,250 respectively, within the same period. Their prices may also rise further.

    Tunde Oluwole, a fellow of the Nigerian Institute of Builders, explained that the development was caused by high-interest rates, inflation, increasing exchange rate and scarcity of forex in the country.

    He said, “The increasing prices in Nigeria is a result of the combined effects of high-interest rates, devaluation of the naira, inflation, and non-effective distribution network of the materials.”

    What you should know

    The mining of minerals in Nigeria accounts for only 0.3% of its gross domestic product, due to the nation’s overdependence on its vast oil resources.

    China accumulated a majority of the global iron ore imports in 2019, with a 69.1% share of total global imports. Japan followed behind distantly with a 7.5% share of iron ore imports.

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