Following the expiration of the deadline given to truckers on Oshodi-Apapa expressway to vacate the area, the Lagos State Government in collaboration with the Police and Military men impounded at least 60 trailers and tankers parked indiscriminately on the expressway this morning.
Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State had a week ago issued seven days ultimatum to truckers who parked on the expressway to vacate or have their vehicles towed away.
Commissioner for Police, Lagos State, Umar Manko personally led the operation to clear the nuisance on the expressway occasioned by tanker and trailer drivers.
The exercise began around 12am when the Commissioner led Taskforce officials, the police, military officers and officials of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA and the Kick Against Indiscipline, KAI, officers to dislodge the truckers.
Some of the truckers had already vacated the expressway while the ultimatum was still on while the recalcitrant ones stayed put until they were dislodged in the early hours of today.
Taskforce Chairman, Bayo Sulaiman said there was no resistance whatsoever from the truckers as their trucks were being towed by the Taskforce.
Sulaiman said the aim of the exercise was to restore Apapa to its former glory, saying that there was no way shanties could be left standing in the area as well as indiscriminate parking. He stated that those inhabiting the shanties and the tankers would never return again as 24 hours surveillance would be mounted just like it was done at Oshodi, Mushin and Obalende.
General Manager, LASTMA, Engr. Babatunde Edu, confirmed that about 60 trucks had been towed so far, saying the exercise would continue. He said all trucks parked along the road from Apapa Wharf and Liverpool were cleared, saying that the entire axis was now free.
Motorists plying the route have heaped praises on the state government for rising up to the challenge by dislodging the tankers.
For over five years, the tanker and trailer drivers had taken over the expressway and converted it to a parking lot, leaving a single lane for motorists to ply, causing severe traffic jam.
Motorists plying the route ended up spending over four hours between Berger Yard and Wharf for a journey that should last for about 5-10 minutes.
Today traffic gridlock disappeared while motorists heaved sigh of relief that the traffic menace in the area was over.
Also, hundreds of shanties at Liverpool under the bridge, Marine Beach and Creek Road were demolished by the Taskforce as such places served as hideout for criminals.