The Federal Controller of Works in Lagos, Mr Adedamola Kuti, on Tuesday issued final eviction warning to auto spare parts dealers at the popular Ladipo Market in Lagos, trading on its Right of Way (RoW).
Kuti also served final notices on car dealers on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway during a RoW recovery tour by the ministry.
While inspecting the Ladipo Market, he warned spare parts dealers who displayed their wares on the road set back to desist from the act and trade only inside the market.
He also warned auto mechanics using the highway in front of the market as workshops to vacate immediately to avoid being victims of government action.
Kuti said that the traders usually used their wares to block the highway and engaged in street trading, thereby creating obstruction and causing gridlock.
“We are just recovering our RoW. We are not here to disturb anybody’s business but individual businesses should not disturb other road users.
“The road is not part of the market. The market is right inside; go inside and transact business,’’ he said
Kuti said that the ministry had served earlier notices on the traders to vacate the RoW and was giving them a final warning before government would move in to enforce sanctions.
“We are not here to disturb anybody’s business. The road is not for trading; they should go into the market to do transactions,’’ he said.
Mr Jude Nwankwo, President-General, Ladipo Central Executive Auto Dealers Association (LACEC), promised that the association was going to ensure total compliance by its members.
“We have promised to comply and there must be free flow of traffic here,’’ he said.
Nwankwo said that the association was going to shut down the market on Friday till noon to clean it in order to address sanitation concerns raised by the controller’s team.
He appealed to the Lagos State Government to construct a pedestrian bridge and car park for the market operators to save lives and reduce hardship on road users and customers to the market.
During the tour of car dealers’ shops on both carriageways of the Lagos Ibadan-Expressway, Kuti appealed to the various companies to comply with the directive and remove cars parked on road setbacks for sale.
“We have warned you that you should leave the highway. We are already expanding this road and we do not want this obstruction on our highway.
“Please leave before we come and evacuate the cars,’’ he told the car dealers.
The controller said that “Federal Government RoW is 150ft, about 50 meters from the centre of the highway’’.
Kuti said that the contract for the rehabilitation and expansion of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway was ongoing and the ministry did not want obstruction to the project.
`We have warned them; they have been issued letters and now, this is going to be a final warning.
“The next time we come, we are coming to enforce the law.
“They cannot continue to do business on a busy highway, it is unacceptable,’’ Kuti said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Lagos State Ministry of Environment had marked all the auto shops after the Otedola Bridge on Ibadan-bound carriageway on the expressway for demolition.
NAN reports that some of the car dealers were remorseful, rendered apologies and promised to move their cars from the highway, while others insisted that they did not get previous notices served. (NAN)
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