The Lagos State Government on Tuesday launched a Pilot Live Traffic Report Scheme to aid Lagos commuters with information throughout the State metropolis.
An initiative of the Lagos Traffic Radio, the scheme will engage Live Report Motorcycles for on-the-spot reporting of traffic situations in the State.
Speaking at the inauguration event on Tuesday at Ikeja, Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho described the initiative as one which will play a key role in traffic management across Lagos.
The commissioner said the Pilot Scheme will revolutionise the traffic management in Lagos, stating that the problems of traffic has been a source of concern for governor Jide Sanwo-Olu’s Administration.
“If you look at the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda of the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration, transportation is a very big pillar and in fact the very first one, and because it is the very first one, we are not joking about it.
“We are looking forward to the day that we are going to be reporting from the skies. I am also looking forward to the day that every thing that we do about Transportation is driven by technology.
“It high time we got this kind of thing all over Lagos; the drone monitoring traffic and everything. All I want to assure you is that that first pillar of the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda is so important that whatever idea anyone body brings that can ease transportation in Lagos and make us look forward like all other big cities in the world, Mr. Governor is ready to accept such ideas.”
While praising the Agency’s initiative, the Commissioner said: “I was excited because of the symbolism of it all; because of the creativity that this has brought. The symbolism of it is that they are not just sitting down there, they are thinking about how to improve what they are doing.
“They are going to fasten the movement of our Traffic Radio officials to accidents and every other thing disturbing traffic, so that people can get accurate information. There is nothing you spend on information management and gathering that is too much.
“I see this as a first step. It will get to a stage that Traffic Radio will acquire its own helicopter and get its officers all over the place to do their job based on the fastest technology.
“It will get to a time that we are going to be reporting from everywhere, because there is nothing left for us; the population is there, the traffic is there. So everything is challenging us, challenging our creativity, and ability to manage the little resources that we have.
“You are not looking at the this as just mere inauguration of motorcycles but the symbolism behind it; that it’s going to ease reporting, and enhance the fact that of all the things that we do, either in government or private affairs, information is key. if you don’t have information, you are dead. You need to know where you are going to, you need to know what has happened where you are coming from.
He however urged the management of the Radio “not to rest on their oars” but rather “continue to think on your feet on how to do better as a Radio station.”
In his remark, the General Manager, Traffic Radio, Mr. Tayo Akanle, said the initiative was borne out of the occurrence of incidents on highways coupled with little or no comprehensive live reports.
According to him, the pilot scheme is designed to change the travel experience of commuters “as they usually under-go harrowing experiences whenever there is a major incident on the road, while also offering “professional, comprehensive, real time and accurate” information which will be relayed to listeners through the radio station and social media handles of the Agency.
He however appreciated Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu for the support towards the actualization of the Pilot Scheme, which according to him, is borne by the desire to vitalise the traffic management system of the State as captured in the Administration’s policy thrust, tagged the T.H.E.M.E.S. Agenda.
He added that the Pilot Scheme is complementary to the efforts of other stakeholders in the management of traffic in the State.
“This Pilot Scheme, is the contribution of the Lagos Traffic Radio to the actualization of the Traffic Management and Transportation component of the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda for the socio-economic development and empowerment opportunities for all residents in Lagos State,’ he said.
In his remark, the State’s Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation, Mr. Oluseyi Wenu, hailed the initiative, stating that the importance of such on-the-spot reporting cannot be over emphasized.
According to him, the effort is key to the actualization of the Administration’s traffic management vision, a pillar of the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda.
According to the General Manager, Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), Engr. Olajide Oduyoye, the initiative is an improvement on the profile of traffic management in the State.
Against the notion that the development is an encroachment on the duties of LASTMA, Oduyoye said that the development is a welcomed complement to make LASTMA’s work much easier.
The Sector Commander, Federal Road Safety Corps, Lagos, Mr. Olusegun Ogungbemide, represented by Mrs. Olabisi Sonusi, said the development is timely and highly commendable, particularly with the congestion of traffic during the “ember months,” the 4th quarter of the year.
According to him, the information accruing from such scheme will assist commuters to make informed decision based on traffic update, adding that it will widely assist Lagosians during the lingering torrential rainfall.