The Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) has deployed seven patrol vehicles and 60 special operatives to tackle the gridlock in Apapa, Lagos.
The Public Relations Officer of LASTMA, Mr Hassan Mahmoud, made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Monday.
“The special squad and patrol vehicles are to be on patrol 24 hours.
“We have also deployed everything that will make the road free, even a towing vehicle was deployed to clear any broken down vehicle,” Mahmoud said.
But some of the LASTMA traffic managers and Federal Road Safety Corps officers in the squad told NAN that they were being harassed by motorists.
The officers, who pleaded anonymity because they are not authorized to speak to the media said that some motorists driving against traffic had been threatening to knock them if they challenged them for breaking the law.
“We resume work as early as 5 a.m. and close late in the night to control traffic but some motorists frustrate our efforts.
“Some abuse us when controlling the traffic while others threaten to knock us down if we send them back while driving against traffic but our joy is that many also appreciate our presence,” they said.
In the early hours of the day, Costain, Ijora and Apapa areas experienced total gridlock but the log-jam started easing off later in the day.
Reacting to the latest gridlock, Mahmoud said that Mondays were always traffic-prone because of people going to work or to other businesses.
He, however, appealed to road users to obey traffic officials in order to enjoy free flow of traffic, saying that anyone caught threatening or harassing traffic officials would face the full wrath of the law.
“They are not there on their own. They are sent by government. Remember they are human beings like you. Don’t frustrate their efforts,” he said.
From Ikorodu road, Funsho Williams Avenue, Costain up to Eko Bridge, trucks and tankers were still parked on the highway, in spite of the directive by the Lagos State Government for the trucks to leave the roads.