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5th Lecture Series: Hamzat, others commend Lagos Traffic Radio initiative in traffic management



…as LASG sets to install 2,000 CCTV cameras for traffic offences

By Moses Adeniyi

Lagos Traffic Radio was on Thursday commended for its prompt and timely dissemination of traffic updates and information which enables residents to navigate smoothly while commuting across the Lagos metropolis on daily basis.

The commendations came at the heels of the 5th Lecture Series of the Medium, comprising stakeholders in the transportation sector in a bid to identify with the new realities in Law Enforcement of traffic management in the State.

Speaking as the Lead Speaker at the Lecture Series Webinar held on Thursday, 17th December, with the Theme: ‘Traffic Law Enforcement; The New Normal’, Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, commended the Management and Staff of the Organization for their relentless effort in providing traffic information and also solving gridlock through live reports.

The Deputy Governor who said the Medium has lived up to its mandate, called on residents to always tune in to the Station to plan their journey daily, which would further ease traffic in the Metropolis with informed Updates in line with the THEMES Agenda of the present administration of guaranteeing seamless Inter-Modal Transport System, through effective Transport and Traffic Management.

Hamzat described the theme of this year’s Lecture as timely, especially in the face of the daunting challenges posed by the COVID-19 Pandemic which is ravaging the world.

According to him, the present administration has diversified Transportation using different modes, including Water Transportation, just as it is intensifying work on the ongoing Red Line Rail Project.

The Deputy Governor who assured a more robust enforcement of all existing Traffic Rules and Regulations, also commended Lagos Traffic Radio for partnering with Government and all its Ministries, Departments and Agencies towards ensuring a Lagos that works for all.

According to him, with Lagos being a densely populated city, citizens have a major role to play as the Government is working around the clock in providing different programmes through the Medium as well as strengthening officials monitoring traffic to solve gridlocks on the road using technology.

On his part, Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde, who was one of the Guest Speakers at the Virtual event, advised the Station to intensify its efforts in bringing out more innovative Programmes.

Moreover, he disclosed that the Lagos State Government has announced plans to install no less than 2,000 CCTV cameras across the state to monitor traffic congestion, complement the efforts of traffic managers, and combat the menace of traffic offenders on Lagos Roads.

Speaking on the topic; “Lagos Traffic Law Enforcement: The Technical Dynamics of New Normal”, Oladeinde added that in the coming weeks, about 1,000 hand held cameras will be distributed to personnel of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority ( LASTMA) to enable them document their operations and ensure proper sanctions to offenders of the state traffic laws.

Oladehinde explained that this is to demonstrate the government’s commitment to leverage on technology and up-to-date realities of the post pandemic era in improving and solving the challenges of transportation and other related matters.

The Commissioner said the government is also working to reduce human contact at the point of vehicle documentations, registration and licensing, adding that 57 more LAVICS Centres will be established across the State to enable motorists’ key into the zero-tolerance for rickety vehicles on the State’s roads.

Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi  who spoke on the Topic; “Safety Starts with Us: Transportation and Personal Health Responsibility” stated that since the first index case of COVID-19 in February, this year, Lagos state has seen all together, 25,000 confirmed cases of Covid-19 and has tested almost 200, 000 people.

Abayomi also noted that right from the beginning; Lagos State’s testing capacity has improved with more people getting tested monthly, from about 200 to 500, and 1,000.

He added that presently Lagos is testing close to 2,000 people every day, across the state; in all the Local government area and Local Council Development Areas.

Abayomi emphasized on the need for Lagosians to follow all safety protocols, including, regular handwashing, use of sanitizers, maintaining social distancing, wearing of face masks, for the Pandemic to be defeated.

He also tasked parents and guidance to watch over their kids in the midst of the global health challenge.

Earlier, the host of the event, Lagos State Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho, noted that with 22 million trips made daily on Lagos Roads, a well developed transportation system is critical to its success as a social economic model for the African Continent.

Omotosho stressed that the fifth Lecture Series is geared towards proffering solutions to the problems associated with the transportation industry which include lack of expertise, lack of political will, lack of revenue and lack of human resources.

Delivering the vote of thanks, General Manager, Lagos Traffic Radio, Mr Tayo Akanle, dedicated the thanks to the Almighty God for making the lecture a reality.

He pledged the Station’s commitment to continue to provide timely, accurate, reliable and objective traffic report to the general public.

Akanle who commended Governor Babajide Sanwo-olu, for what he described “as a man of many visions and passion, full of dedication” for Lagos and all its citizens, said the Governor has continued to show great leadership skills in the face of COVID-19, a global pandemic that has ravaged the world.


Nigeria’s electoral system weak, requires total overhaul — CAN



By Austine Emmanuel, Kaduna

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has said that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is weak and requires a total overhaul.

The Chairman, Kaduna state chapter of CAN, Rev. John Joseph Hayab stated this in his remarks during the one day conference organized by AHLUL -BAYT Nigeria, on “Post Election Scenario in Nigeria.”

Speaking on the theme, “Beyond the Ballot: Assessing Nigeria’s Post Election Landscape,” at the weekend in Kaduna, Hayab noted that there is the need to strengthen the institution so as to be able to improve the integrity and fairness of future elections in the country.

He further reiterated that until INEC becomes independent to shoulder their responsibilities without any form of external interference, Nigeria will continue to have shattered and battered elections without hope for good governance.

“Correcting a battered Election in Nigeria can be a complex and challenging process, but there are several steps that can be taken to improve the integrity and fairness of future elections.

“We need to strengthen electoral institutions and enhance the independence and capacity of institutions like INEC to ensure they can effectively carry out their duties, such as voter registration, voter education, and the administration of elections. This includes providing adequate funding, training, and security for the electoral staff.

“Establish mechanisms to ensure transparency in the entire electoral process, from voter registration to the announcement of results. This can include making the electoral process more inclusive, allowing for independent election observers, and conducting comprehensive audits of election results.

“We also need to take steps to address the issue of voter intimidation and violence, which often plague Nigerian elections. This can include implementing stronger security measures around polling units, creating an environment that enables open and peaceful political campaigns, and holding perpetrators accountable for any acts of violence or intimidation.

“Invest in comprehensive civic education programs to increase awareness among citizens about their rights and responsibilities as voters. This includes educating voters about the importance of their participation, how to exercise their democratic rights, and how to prevent electoral malpractices.

“The need also to review and amend electoral laws, if necessary, to ensure they are comprehensive, clear, and in line with international standards. Harming the electoral process should incur severe penalties. Strengthen law enforcement agencies to hold accountable those who violate electoral laws and engage in corrupt practices.

“Introduce technology and innovation in the electoral process to improve efficiency, transparency, and accuracy. This can include electronic voter registration, biometric identification of voters, and electronic transmission of election results to minimise manipulation and human error.

“International support and collaboration: Seek assistance and collaboration from international organisations, such as the United Nations, African Union, and regional organizations, to provide technical support, exchange best practices, and ensure credible and fair elections.

“It is important to note that implementing these measures above will require a collective effort from the government, political parties, civil society organisations, and citizens alike to ensure a truly democratic and fair electoral process in Nigeria,” he said.

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COP28: Sanwo-Olu highlights infrastructure deficit, funding as factors hindering access to supply of clean water in Lagos



Governor of Lagos Babajide Sanwo-Olu has identified infrastructure deficit and meagre resources as factors hindering access to supply of clean water in Lagos

The Governor speaking at a side meeting with the theme: “Valuing Water: A Lifeline in Climate Transition,” organised by Business and Philanthropy Climate Forum and Sustainable Market Initiative at the ongoing 28th session of Conference of Parties (COP28) at Dubai Exhibition Centre pitched a sustainable funding proposal in order to raise private and philanthropic funding in addressing inadequate water infrastructure and supply shortages in Lagos.

Sanwo-Olu disclosed that Lagos, with 22 million population, has a daily demand of 700 million gallons of potable water, but said the State could hardly supply 210 million gallons per day due to shortage of infrastructure.

The Governor said, although provision of clean water had been generally considered a social service, it was an essential element of economic necessity, given its importance to keeping humans healthy.

Lagos, he said, is challenged by increasing demand for clean water. Sanwo-Olu said the inadequacy of supply infrastructure could raise disease vulnerability in underserved communities, pointing out that the State, despite being surrounded by abundant water bodies, could only manage to utilise 40 per cent of its installed water facilities.

He said, “Lagos has an investment of about $2.8 billion in water infrastructure, but there is a burden on the huge population, as we need to create an ecosystem where we can have access to basic needs in the 21st century. Given our meagre resources, it is really a challenge but we certainly cannot continue to give excuses. This gap is being felt by underserved communities and the risk to the public is high.”

“We have continued to allocate resources to this sector from our budget, but the intervention is hardly enough to serve the needs of the residents. Four years ago, I gave a commitment of $100 million, but this is like a drop, given the number of investments required to fully explore the potential in the sector. We have huge infrastructure that is not being utilised, making us operate at less than 40 percent of the installed capacity.

“Out of the $1.7 trillion needed globally to address the gap in clean water adequacy, Lagos requires less one percent of the funds to provide safe water. It is my belief that this conversation would lead to a sustainable solution that would meet the needs of millions of people that want water adequacy. Our goal is making committed partners believe in the economic viability of their investments.”

Sanwo-Olu listed the country’s energy crisis as another factor slowing down the provision of clean water, stressing that irregular power supply rendered resources allocated to the sector inefficient.

The Governor called for equity in global investment towards accelerating water adequacy, noting that humans, regardless of their gender and geographical location, need equal access to clean water.

With 65 percent of its population made up of young people under 30, Sanwo-Olu told the funders that Lagos remained an African asset on which viable investments could be made.

The side meeting, which was moderated by the Secretary General of Insurance Development Forum, Ms. Ekhosuehi Iyahen, had seven other panelists, including Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of WaterAid, Tim Wainright, Chief Sustainability Officer of PepsiCo, and CEO of Dalmia Cement in India, Mahendra Singh.

Others are Chief Operating Officer of, Vedika Bhandarkar, Managing Partner of AquaForAll, Josien Sluijs, Assistant Director General of Food and Agriculture Organisation at UN, Maximo Torero, and former CEO of Mars, Incorporated, Grant Reid.

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COP28: Sanwo-Olu seeks partners on implementation of Lagos climate adaptation plan



Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State on Sunday called for global partnership in implementing the state climate adaptation and resilience plan.

Sanwo-Olu made the appeal while speaking in Dubai at the side event organised by the Lagos Government at the ongoing climate conference known as COP28.

The Lagos governor said the state had a huge potential in three critical areas, which the prospective partners could help to harness for global development.

The areas, the governor said, include waste management and recycling, public transportation and renewable energy.

These sectors, he noted, offer “huge opportunities” for reducing emissions and promoting sustainable practices.

The governor called on climate financiers to move from talk to action, saying it requires concerted efforts to achieve the net-zero emission target.

“We are here as a government to have commitments, there are so many talks and now is the time for action, through partnership and investment,” Sanwo-Olu said.

He, however, expressed the support of the state to the national net zero emission target.

This support, he said, was part of the state’s broader commitment to combating climate change and improving environmental sustainability.

He said Lagos was not just passively supporting the target but is actively working towards it.

According to him, the state is ahead to achieve zero net carbon emissions both in terms of preparedness and strategic actions.

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