The Lagos State Government has commenced stakeholders engagement with community leaders in Lagos Mainland on the proposed Lagos Light-Rail Mass Transit (LRMT) Red Line project.
The Managing Director, Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA), Mrs Abimbola Akinajo, made this known during the Public Consultation forum on the LRMT Red Line and Associated Infrastructure Projects held in Lagos on Tuesday.
Akinajo who was represented by Director, Rail Transportation of LAMATA, Mr Olasunkanmi Okusaga, said there was need for proper enlightenment before the construction began to avoid misunderstanding among the residents.
She noted that the federal government had accepted the state government’s request to join the Red Line rail with the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge rail line.
She added that the forum was to consult the residents whom the construction might affect diring the construction exercise.
The LAMATA boss said the Red Line was one of the seven rail lines identified in the state’s Strategic Transport Master Plan for the mass movement of commuters aimed at reducing road congestion in the state.
She stressed the importance of the 24-kilometre stretch between Oyingbo and Agbado, adding that it represents the first phase of the 37-kilometre rail project.
Akinajo added that the railway was one of the effective ways through which cities dealt with traffic congestion.
“The Red Line is supposed to be a quick win because it will share tracks with the Nigerian Railway Corporation on its Lagos – Ibadan rail corridor.
“There will be no delay, no budget or cost overrun and there will not be any shift in delivery date and the rail will carry at least 730 passengers on daily basis,’’ she said.
Akinajo said that the construction mighty affect some structures around Apapa Road on Lagos Mainland, while the contractors had concluded arrangements to use the walkways along Muritala Road at Ebute-Meta.
She said the state government had made adequate provisions for those residents that might be affected around mainland, including the shops owners.
Akinajo said that the state government had also launched E-ticketing which could be used to board ferry, Lagos buses as well as the rail as obtainable in the developed country.
The Chairman, Lagos Mainland Local Government, Mrs Omolola Essien, had pleaded with the community leaders in the area to support the government to achieve the rail projects in the state.
Essien, who was represented by the Vice Chairman, Lagos Mainland Local Government, Mr Jubril Emilagba, urged LAMATA to engage the local government and the community to avoid inconveniences.
The High Chief, Eletu of Otto, Mr Samsideen Pedro, urged the government to be sincere with the compensation.
Pedro said his family house was affected by the Lagos Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) System terminal at Oyingbo and they were yet to be compensated.
He also asked LAMATA to consider their children for employment at the end of the construction exercise.
A Supervisor at Mainland Local Government, Alhaji Afeez Danmola, urged the management of LAMATA to interpret crossing instructions into local languages to avoid accidents.
The council secretary, Mr Wasiu Oguniyi, appealed to the agency to engage some of their residents who were qualified artisans during construction.