ABUJA: SENATE MOVES TO TACKLE APAPA GRIDLOCK IN LAGOS STATE.

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Senator Ahmad Lawan
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In a bid to address the protracted Apapa gridlock in Lagos State, the Senate has directed its Committee on Marine Transport to investigate the implementation of the e-call up system and allegations of extortion by port officials and report back on the way forward.

The upper legislative chamber on Tuesday in Abuja also urged the federal government to collaborate with the Lagos State government and other critical stakeholders to evacuate all petrol tankers and heavy-duty vehicles along the Apapa Ports access road as well as ensuring that tank farms are relocated to other areas.

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These formed parts of the resolutions reached by the Senate on a motion, titled: “Urgent need tackle protracted Apapa gridlock in Lagos and embrace

the newly introduced electronic call up a system of admitting trucks into the terminal” by Senator Oluremi Tinubu (Lagos Central) and co-sponsored by Senator Solomon Adeola (Lagos West) and Senator Adetokunbo Abiru (Lagos East) during plenary.

Leading debate on the motion raised through Orders 42 and 52 of the Senate Rules on the matter of urgent public importance.

Senator Tinubu informed that being the country’s most valuable import and export gateway, and a high-yielding revenue hub, Apapa port is currently raking in over N1trillion annually into the federal government’s treasury through various taxes, levies, and tariffs.

In his contribution, Senator Adeola stressed the need for collaboration between the federal and Lagos State governments to tackle the menace once and for all, adding that the Senate should invite the Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi for interrogation on the national embarrassment on the road.

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But Senator Nicholas Tofowomo restated his call for a seaport in Ondo State so as to serve neighboring states like Ekiti, Osun, Edo, and Delta and thereby decongesting the Apapa Seaport in Lagos.

The Senate, in other resolutions, also mandated the Committee on Marine Transport as well as those of the Works and Petroleum (Downstream) to meet the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA; concessionaires; Nigeria Union of Petroleum Engineers and all other stakeholders to ensure resolution of pending conflicts and ensure synergy among stakeholders.

It commended the federal government for the reconstruction of the Oshodi – Apapa Expressway, and the completion of the Apapa Ports spur line of the Lagos-Ibadan rail.

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