LASG reads riot act to operators of events centres, private property owners, others on road blockage

• Apologizes to Lekki residents over weekend gridlock

Lagos State government has warned operators of events centres/private property owners and other places of attraction in the state that it is henceforth compulsory for any of them preparing to host more than 50 guests to notify the General Manager, Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) for adequate arrangement on management of traffic and parking of visitors’ vehicles.

The state government gave the warning against the backdrop of several hours of gridlocks experienced on Lekki – Expressway on Saturday, warning that it would no longer condone parking of vehicles on the roadside by guests for failure of the operators/ property owners to make provision for adequate parking space for their guests.

Commissioner for Transportation, Dr Frederic Oladeinde, who read the riot act in a statement made available by the ministry, said the gridlock was caused by motorists who could not secure parking space in the venues of their social gathering and resorted to parking their vehicles on the roadsides, causing permanent traffic gridlocks.

The commissioner, while apologizing on behalf of the state government for the gridlock experienced on the Lekki corridor at the weekend, said it was regrettable that innocent citizens who were going about their lawful duties were forced to share in the pains caused by merrymakers.

“Henceforth, any social event where the number of expected visitors exceeds 50, organizers of such event must notify the General Manager of LASTMA in advance, especially, if it is perceived that their properties would not accommodate large numbers of vehicles that may be brought by their guests. The LASTMA Authority will be on hand to advise them on what to do rather than allowing their visitors to block roads as this will attract stiffer penalties if caught,” he warned.

Oladeinde urged operators of events centres/ private property owners and other places of attractions across the state to abide by this rules and regulations, warning that any commercial event centre, place of worship, night club/lounge, or private property owners that is shot on account of illegal blockage of roads by their attendants would not be reopened until their owners paid the stipulated fines, while vehicles towed on similar offences would not be released until the corresponding amount is paid to the government cover as fines.

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The Commissioning, while bemoaning operators of some events centres and religious leaders for their fewer concerns for the general peace of the public, hinted that there were so many event centres and places of worship on that expressway operating without adequate parking spaces for their visitors/attendants.

According to him, most traffic gridlocks being experienced in that axis were caused by people that park their vehicles on the road, warning that the state government would no longer tolerate this act of indiscipline from any quarters.

“Many of these events centres and churches do not have enough spaces for their visitors, especially on Lekki/ Epe Expressway. Most often, public roads are used for their parking while on many occasions, they extend parking of vehicles to critical junctions and highways while not mindful of other road users,” Oladeinde explained.

The commissioner reminded that the relevant section of the State Traffic Laws that guides the operation of events centres in the state as regards parking of vehicles is still in place, warning further that the state government would not hesitate to apply the law on any erring event centre or private property owner whose attendants block the road on account of inadequate parking space.

Speaking further, Oladeinde assured that the administration of Mr Babajide Olusola Sanwo Olu was poised to tackle traffic gridlocks to a standstill, urging the residents to continue to support the 6-Pillars Development Agenda of the state government for a traffic-free flow and more prosperous Smart City Lagos.

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