Saturday, December 2, 2023

Lagos gives seven-day ultimatum to shanty owners on blue line rail corridor

He stressed the need to ensure a complete restoration of the right-of-way of the rail service.

• September 24, 2023
Lagos Blue Line Metro station
Lagos Blue Line Metro station [Credit: Twitter/Sanwo-Olu]

Lagos State government on Sunday gave a seven-day ultimatum to shanty owners and traders on the setback on the Lagos-Badagry Expressway to move behind or relocate totally.

The Lagos-Badagry Expressway sits the blue line rail service from Orile to Iyana Iba and its right-of-way.

Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources Tokunbo Wahab issued the ultimatum during an inspection tour of the rail line corridor.

He stressed that there was the need to ensure a complete restoration of the right-of-way of the rail service, which had been infringed upon by shanty owners and traders.

Mr Wahab noted that the Lagos-Badagry Expressway, through which the corridor passes, is an international highway whose setback must be held sacrosanct.

He explained that the setback for the expressway was between 90 and 120 metres from the road and that any structure on the setback would not be allowed to stand.

He noted that the one-month notice the government had given to traders, squatters, and occupiers of shanties and abandoned vehicles on the Lagos-Badagry Expressway to vacate the area had lapsed.

The commissioner laid emphasis on the Agboju area of the corridor where settlers had erected shanties and assured that the area would be beautified after the shanties had been removed.

He advised recalcitrant occupiers of shanties under the bridge before Abule Osun area, also on the corridor, to move out before the government’s enforcement team shoved them away.

Mr Wahab charged commercial vehicle operators on the corridor to operate only from their designated parks, as vehicles picking up or dropping passengers at undesignated bus stops would be impounded and their owners prosecuted.

The commissioner assured that the government was determined to restore the greenery and beautify the Lagos-Badagry Expressway, Agege, Lagos Island, Ikeja, and other areas where traders had encroached on the right-of-way.

“A special intervention team is cleaning up the Lagos-Badagry Expressway to rid it of all environmental nuisances and black spots.

“The exercise will be sustained to ensure that ejected squatters do not return to rebuild their shanties,’’ Mr Wahab said.

The commissioner also warned street traders in different parts of the state that no area encroached upon would be left out of the clean-up.

Mr Wahab advised traders at Afolabi Ege Market, Iyana Iba, to relocate within seven days as they were causing traffic gridlock in the area.


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