NCAA, LASG Partner To Reduce Risk On Unauthorised High Rise Buildings

FG Sacks Directors Of NCAA

 

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and the Lagos State Government (LASG) are partnering to reduce the danger posed by unauthorised high rise structures.

It is expected that the two parastatals of the Lagos State Government will deploy their capacities in clearing all obstructions/obstacles along flight paths within the state and the resources will be used to spot where other landing facilities are located in Lagos.

In a statement by General Manager, Public Relations, Sam Adurogboye, the collaboration was a resolution from a bilateral meeting between the NCAA Director General and the officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Physical Planning & Urban Development and Ministry of Works and Infrastructure.

These landing facilities include Heliport, Helipad, Helideck and Airstrip.

Therefore, in line with its regulatory functions, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has directed all intending developers or builders of high rise structures within the Aerodrome Obstacle Limitation Surfaces (OLS) should always apply to the Authority for Aviation Height Clearance (AHC) and Permit.

It was similarly agreed that NCAA will provide the Lagos State agencies with a Flight Path Map to guide them in planning, development and granting of approvals for new structures in the state.

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) says it is ready to enter into a partnership that will guarantee the safety and security of flight operations.

The Director-General was represented at the meetings by the Director of Aerodrome and Airspace Standards (DAAS), Engr. Mohammed Odunowo.

Another meeting has been slated to review the operations.

FRSC Confirms Four Dead,Analyses Lagos-Ibadan Expressway Situation

Lagos-Ibadan expressway, gridlock, Tanker accident,One more person has been confirmed dead, by the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) Marshall, Boboye Oyeyemi, bringing the death toll of the Lagos-Ibadan express way accident, to Four.

He also made the confirmation that five, not four vehicles as against Wednesday’s report, were involved, while speaking on Channels Television’s breakfast show, Sunrise Daily.

Mr Oyeyemi, explaining the situation that led up to the recent road congestion, said:

“The Lagos Ibadan expressway has the highest traffic density in the country, of about 25,000 vehicles per hour.”

Hence, the need for the ongoing road construction, aimed at expanding the roads from two-way lanes to three.

He explained that “when this kind of construction is on-going, there is bound to be such chaotic situation, however, even before the construction started, there have been series of traffic alerts by the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)”.

After rescue efforts were completed, on Wednesday, the aftermath of the accident was the gridlock which commuters still have to suffer a day or more after.

The FRSC Boss, explaining further said:

“All those tankers, trailers that were packed because of the gridlock yesterday, started moving, and because the inbound lane had been shut down for repairs, leaving only one lane, there is bound to be a band-wagon effect.

“When those tankers are moving, there’s no way for any other vehicle to attempt to over-take,” he said.

He however stated that his men had worked over-night and were still on ground, while suggesting that “what we require now, is traffic redistribution.

“All those trailers should be re-routed so that there can be flow of traffic for smaller vehicles and buses,” he stated.

Mr Oyeyemi, then suggested three ways by which the situation could be abated.

He said, vehicles could re-route through Lekki-epe, Ikorodu or Sango-ota, Abeokuta routes.

However to make that move possible, he hinted that he would be relocating from Abuja to Lagos on Thursday, so that proper discussion could be held on how to further ease the situation.

The ghastly accident occurred when a tanker collided with another truck, causing a fire explosion, on a major bridge along Lagos-Ibadan expressway, in the early hours of Wednesday.

The prompt deployment of men of the National Emergency Management Agency, (NEMA), Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), NSCDC, fire service and the police prevented the situation from escalating further.

Three Confirmed Dead In Diesel Tanker Accident

Tanker accident, Lagos-Ibadan expressway, gridlockThree persons have been confirmed dead on Wednesday, after an accident that occurred on the Lagos-Ibadan express way.

The ghastly accident occurred when a tanker collided with another truck, causing a fire explosion, on a major bridge along Lagos-Ibadan expressway, in the early hours of Wednesday.

The roads reached a gridlock following the incident, although traffic officials have been working to ease the road tension so far, and joint evacuation efforts were being carried out by men of the National Emergency Management Agency, (NEMA), Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), NSCDC, fire service and the police.

FRSC Marshall, Boboye Oyeyemi, explaining the situation that led up to the recent road congestion, said:

“The Lagos Ibadan expressway has the highest traffic density in the country, of about 25,000 vehicles per hour.”

Hence, the need for the ongoing road construction, aimed at expanding the roads from two-way lanes to three.

He explained that “when this kind of construction is on-going, there is bound to be such chaotic situation, however, even before the construction started, there have been series of traffic alerts by the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)”.

As early as 3:30am on Wednesday, traffic already started building-up, in what many thought was the usual traffic, which started last week due to the re-construction of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.

Unknown to them, the ghastly accident had just occurred, involving goods-laden truck, diesel tanker and some vehicles.

According to passers-by, vehicles heading toward the axis were diverted to the inward-Lagos lane as officers of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) cordoned off the outward Lagos-lane.

A bus driver giving account of the event said he got caught up in the traffic which he thought was due to the u-turn before Secretariat bus-stop, but on getting to the u-turn, he saw FRSC officials diverting vehicles to the inward-Lagos lane.

Tanker accident, Lagos-IbadanVehicles that were already ahead on the cordoned off lane started making a u-turn to join the inward-Lagos lane on sighting the diesel tanker accident.

Public vehicles that are Mowe-Ibafo bound, began dropping off passengers at Berger bus-stop, refusing to go further because of the situation, with passengers left with no other choice than to trek from Berger to their various destinations.

Another eye-witness who requested anonymity, explained that the failure of the fuel tanker’s brake system caused it to lose control and collide with the truck.

Thanks to the prompt alertness of the FRSC, LASEMA, Lagos State Firefighters, and Police who were able to bring the situation under control with rescue operations still ongoing.

FRSC Officials however warned motorists that were now driving against traffic, to be careful.

Petrol Tanker accidentA spokesman for the FRSC told Channels Television that immediately the event occurred, “Our men, LASEMA and many other emergency response organizations, rushed to the scene of the accident.

He believes that the accident was as a result of indiscipline of drivers.

“What you have seen is a classical example of indiscipline that has been happening on this road, since the commencement of the rehabilitation of the roads.

“As you can see, there are about four vehicles involved, which means two-lane carriage way had been converted to four-lanes and as a result, they struck themselves and there was a crash and also an explosion of fire.

He however, gave the assurance that the debris would be cleared while the traffic would ease as soon as possible.

Lagos Declares Friday Public Holiday For PVC Collection

PVCThe Lagos State Government has declared Friday a work-free day for its workers to enable them collect their Permanent Voter Cards (PVC).

The State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, enjoined private sector employers to release their workers early to enable those who are yet to collect their PVC to do so in their various polling units.

The Head of Service in the state, Mrs. Oluseyi Williams, gave the directive in a statement that the State Government was desirous of ensuring that all public servants in the state participate in the voting process, adding that they should take the opportunity to go out and collect their PVC at their polling units.

Enjoining private sector employers to release their workers early today for the same purpose, Governor Fashola said “The prosperity and the brighter rewarding future that we all seek, for ourselves and our children over the next four years, would be determined by what we do in the next few days.”

He added, “No sacrifice could be too much a price to secure a better future over the next four years and beyond.”

The Governor noted that in order for democracy to be truly representative, it must be participatory.

He also stressed that such participation confers eligibility and imposes a duty on all the citizens from 18 years and above to vote in the elections even as it also enables them to have a say in the elections.

LASG Debunks Allegation Of Non-Implementation of Minimum Wage

minimum wageThe Lagos State Government has dismissed the allegation of non-implementation of the National Minimum Wage policy in the state as a display of ignorance by the opposition, asserting that Lagos was the first to implement the policy among the 36 states of the Federation.

The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State, Mr. Jimi Agbaje, was quoted recently in some national dailies as alleging that the Lagos State Government was yet to implement the National Minimum Wage policy of the Federal Government.

In a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Aderemi Ibirogba, he described the allegation as another display of bold ignorance by the PDP governorship candidate, explaining that the issue of minimum wage was settled on Tuesday February 7, 2011, when the State Government signed an agreement with the 14 approved labour unions in the State Civil Service.

The agreement, brokered by the then Commissioner for Establishment and Training, Mr. Jide Sanwoolu, the Statement said, increased the minimum wage of the lowest paid worker in the employment of the government by 69.6 percent which is a 7.6 percent increase over the Federal Government approved National Minimum Wage.

The statement enjoined the PDP governorship candidate to always endeavor to verify his “facts” before going public, adding that doing so would save him the continued public display of ignorance of the workings of the very government he is striving to head.

Lagos Government Says Its Not Owing Doctors For Work Done

LASUTH doctorsThe Lagos State Government on Sunday reiterated that it has always paid the salaries of all her employees, doctors inclusive, when due.

Some doctors working in the State Government’s hospitals had early last week staged a demonstration alleging that the State Government owed them an unspecified amount of money covering their salaries for July and August this year.

Debunking the allegation, the Government said the complaint by the doctors refers to July and August 2014 during which period the affected doctors went on strike adding that their salaries were not paid in accordance with the Government’s policy of “No Work, No Pay”.

Government also recalled, with regrets, that the period of the doctors’ strike unfortunately coincided with the outbreak of the Ebola Virus Disease in Lagos State pointing out that all entreaties to the striking doctors to see reasons and call off the strike were ignored.

In a Statement, jointly signed by Chairman, Health Service Commission, Dr. M.O. Salako and Chairman, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Dr. O. Williams, the State Government said it has promptly resumed payment of salaries of the Doctors since they resumed work.

The Statement, which reiterated that the State Government’s Policy of “No Work, No Pay” was still in force, pointing out that the Policy was informed by the fact that it was unjustifiable for any worker to be paid for work not done, also maintaining that any group of its employees that embarked on strike in contravention of the laid-down procedures governing such actions would be so treated for the period of strike.

Assuring all citizens of the administration’s commitment to its responsibilities of protecting life and property in the State at all times, the Statement reiterated, “Government’s policy of “No work, No pay” remains in force meaning you cannot be paid for work not done”.

LASG Provides Free Toll Lines For PVCs

Parmanent Voters CardThe Lagos State Government on Wednesday advised eligible and registered voters who are yet to pick up their Permanent Voters Card (PVC) in the 11 Local Governments where the distribution took place over the weekend, to do so in the offices of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) located at the Local Government offices.

The 11 Local Governments where distribution of Permanent Voters Card took place were Agege, Ajeromi-Ifelodun, Ifako-Ijaiye, Ikeja, Mushin, Lagos Island, Lagos Mainland, Ibeju-Lekki, Ikorodu, Kosofe and Ojo.

Free toll lines were also activated on the same day regarding problems experienced in the recent Permanent Voters Card (PVC) distribution.

Members of the public who have any complaint or seek information concerning the Permanent Voters’ Card were asked to communicate such complaints by text only.

In a Press Statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Lateef Ibirogba, said the lines have become expedient following numerous anomalies arising from the distribution of the Card in 11 out of 20 Local Government Areas of the state, adding that they would serve as avenues for public enlightenment.

He said the numbers, which according to him, would be publicized on the Government’s website and Social Media, would open a channel of interaction between Government and members of the public over the Permanent Voters’ Card.

He also noted that the interaction would enable the government to explain and give useful information to the electorates and enable them obtain their PVC successfully.

Court To Hear Lagos Deportees’ Suit Against LASG On February 10

 Lagos DeporteesThe case of about 80 persons deported from Lagos State in 2013 came up for hearing at the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Monday.

The case, however, had to be adjourned after the counsel to the Lagos deportees informed the court that he had filed a notice of preliminary objection and a counter affidavit which he had just served on the counsel to the Lagos State Government, who confirmed receipt of the processes.

The suit was filed by seven of the deportees, against the Lagos State Government, over alleged breach of their fundamental rights.

The plaintiffs are Joseph Aniebonam, Osondu Mbuto, Osondu Agwu, Nnenna Ogbonna, Emily Okoroariri, Friday Ndukwe and Onyeka Ugwu.

They had filed the suit on behalf of themselves and 76 others, against the Lagos State Government & two others, claiming the sum of N1 billion as damages for breach of their fundamental rights.

The two others who are joined as respondents in the suit are the Attorney-General of Lagos State, and the Commissioner of Police.

Presiding Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia has adjourned the suit to February 10 for hearing of all pending applications.

Background

The plaintiffs, in their motion, want the court to declare that they, as Nigerian citizens, were entitled to their fundamental rights as enshrined in the Constitution.

The Lagos deportees are seeking a declaration that their arrest and detention in various camps in Lagos in July 2013, and their subsequent deportation to Anambra, on July 24, 2013, for no offence, amounted to a serious breach of their fundamental rights.

The deportees also seek an order, mandating the respondents to tender a written apology to them by publishing same in three national newspapers continuously for 30 days, for gross violation of their constitutional rights.

They also want an order, directing the Lagos State Government (LASG), to re-integrate them into the State, as well as perpetual injunction restraining the respondents, their agents, and officers from further deporting or refusing them free entry into Lagos State.

In addition, the applicant claims the sum of 1billion naira against the respondents jointly and severally, as general damages for breach of their rights.

Meanwhile, the Lagos State Government, in its counter-affidavit, contends that the deportation was not borne out of malice, but out of genuine intention to re-unite the applicants with their families.

They had further averred that the applicants were only assisted by the government, to re-join their families, after pleading that they had no homes, relatives or businesses in Lagos State.

Terror Feeds on Fear, Panic And Publicity – Fashola

fashola sunrise ABJThe Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, has again said that the job of securing the lives and property of citizens becomes easier when the people become more interested in their own safety.

Governor Fashola was in the Abuja studios of Channels Television as a guest on the Wednesday edition of the breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily.

Speaking about the security of Lagos amidst the state of insecurity in the entire country, Fashola maintained a usual view that ensuring security in the state was dependent on the level of awareness of the citizens.

“We’ve been taking precautions for the past four years”, Fashola said, as regards protecting the state from insurgents, but warned that misinformation of the public and spreading of panic messages through access to new media tools was not helping matters.

Citing several habits that people have to change in order to protect themselves from being easy target for unscrupulous persons, “Terror feeds on fear and panic and also publicity”, he said.

There were recent reports of an explosion in Apapa area of Lagos and Governor Fashola said that it would be irresponsible to go ahead and assume that it was an attack on the state as it was not.

Speaking further, the Governor called on all residents to register for the State Residents Registration programme, as it was one of the major tools to help the government in providing security for its citizens. He said, “We must know everybody, nobody can afford to be anonymous again.

“I can’t guarantee that somebody entrusted to that data will not abuse it but it does not obviate the need for the data, it doesn’t obviate the necessity to keep it.

“The Lagos State Residents Registration Law is a model that I will commend because we did a lot of research, we looked at what was obtainable across the continent where there were models like this, we looked at South Africa, India, we looked at some of the states in the United States where this kind of practise was obtainable.

“Of course every law is as good as what the people who sit down to debate its policy content do at the time they do so. Challenges that emerge in the next 10 years will necessitate that the next set of people should look at that law again and say ‘is this law behind today’ and modify as we go along.”

The installation of CCTV in Lagos State was also discussed and Fashola stated that the surveillance cameras have been effective but their effectiveness has been hampered because of their dependence on power, an amenity that remained inconsistent in the country.

He, however, also noted that despite the high standard of security intelligence in the United States, their systems have been breached several times by terrorists, an indication that there was more to ensuring security that the installation of devices.

He emphasized the identification of its citizens and keeping a database of all persons the state is expected to provide for and protect as the foundation to creating a safe state.

Apapa/Oshodi Expressway Menace

The need to protect citizens also necessitated a conversation about the harrowing traffic experiences of Lagos residents especially in the Apapa axis of the state. Governor Fashola said:

“I must apologise that citizens are going through what is clearly an avoidable experience in terms of commuting, but without any doubt at all, the pain comes from two sets of actions.

“First, it comes from the way we are managing the distribution of petroleum products, it comes secondly from the way we are managing port activities; these are two activities that the state has no control of, these are Federal Government responsibilities.

“All of the petrol that is available in Nigeria today is pumped from the tank farms in Apapa, that’s a fact. So if you stop any activity there the whole country will not have fuel.

“So apart from the inefficiencies that characterise that system, the cost of commuting and having fuel in your generator is also the harrowing pain that citizens go through today and we can be much more efficient than that.”

He decried the manner in which tankers have taken over the roads, stating that there was need to review the way fuel is being supplied in Nigeria, as it was unacceptable to have little or no space left for vehicular movement.

On his recommendations, he said; “You can’t depend on tank farms to supply 90% of a nation’s need. Even if the tank farm was out in the desert, it’s still not a sustainable system; there are pumping systems across the world to do this.

“How many nations still truck all of their fuel on the road? Why can’t it go by rail? There’s a rail system that the Europeans left when they were managing our oil industry and our ports, the tracks are there. When I was Governor-elect, I checked and it was going to require only about 250million dollars, at that time, to put the rail track back into operation from Lagos all the way to Kaduna.”

He insisted that the manner in which the fuel business and port business in the state had been managed has been a major factor adversely affecting other businesses.

Pension Scheme Initiative

Governor Fashola had been in Abuja, the Federal capital territory attending the World Pension Summit Africa and he also spoke about the progress made by Lagos State in this regard.

The Governor said that his state had been operating two pension schemes; the old Defined Benefit Scheme which, based the 2004 law, the state has been trying move away from and the new Contributory Pension Scheme which the state passed into law in March 2007 just before he was elected as Governor.

This is because there were still retirees in some parastatals running on the old scheme and the state decided not to enforce migration but rather let it fade out gradually “until the last member of that scheme.”

He disclosed that the State Government’s 7.5% contribution on the new pension scheme for its employers had risen to about 61billion Naira with the employees also contributing their 7.5% and with the “wonderful job” done by the Lagos State Pension Commission, about 25billion Naira has been remitted to retirees in the state.

He stated that the compliance level in Lagos State has been “extremely high” despite the initial and current challenges but the Defined Benefit Scheme has been the most challenging with the state having to fund it from the budget.

He reaffirmed that pensioners do not queue for their benefits anymore in Lagos State as the state has involved its Local Governments in the disbursement of the funds and also introduced technology to ensure convenience.

 

Lagos State Swears-In New Permanent Secretaries

The Lagos State Government has promoted eight of its directors to the post of Permanent Secretary, in order to beef up its service delivery and improve efficiency in its civil service.

This brings to 54, the number of Permanent Secretaries administering the State’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).

The Permanent Secretaries, who were selected out of those that contested for the position are, Engineer Olujimi Hotonu, Mrs Oluwatoyin Adegbuji Onikoyi, Mrs Jokotola Ojosipe- Ogundimu and Mr Michael Dawodu.

The newly appointed Tutors-General are Mrs Florence Ogunfidodo, Mr Yinka Gbemi Olaniyi and Mrs Margaret Solarin as well as Dr Olukayode Oguntimehin who had been appointed since August 2, 2013.

The Governor, Babatunde Fashola, while swearing in the new Permanent Secretaries at the Lagos House, Ikeja, urged them to be of good behaviour to justify the confidence reposed in them.

He explained that the process that led to the appointments has been driven by merit. The process saw examinations written by all directors who were eligible, as well as interviews, both written and oral. He added that among the appointees are Lagos indigenes and non-indigenes, which is “a reinforcement of the belief that if everybody is allowed to compete, all would be well.”

“Interestingly also, it has addressed the issue of gender. We have four women and we have four men. I am sure our women can compete and what we must not do is to close the door of competition on their faces. This process has demonstrated that”, he added.

Governor Fashola also said that the latest appointment has also taken cognizance of infrastructure, with the inclusion of personnel in engineering, public accounting and general administration.

While welcoming the new Permanent Secretaries into leadership responsibilities, the Governor reminded them of the oath that they have taken before man and before God, emphasizing that the people of Lagos would hold them accountable with those oaths especially those parts that say they would put public interest above their own interest.

He also appealed to the family and relatives of the new appointees not to be the source of pressure upon them that may lead them to breach their oath of office.

Earlier, while presenting the new appointees, the Head of Service, Mrs Seyi Williams, thanked the Governor on behalf of the members of the Standing Committee on Appointment of Permanent Secretaries, for his insistence on giving credence to exemplary performance and merit as some of the core criteria for elevation into appointive posts in the Public Service.

In his vote of assurance on behalf of the new Permanent Secretaries, Dr Olukayode Oguntimehin thanked the Governor for the opportunity given to them to serve the State, saying that they would discharge their responsibilities adequately and responsibly.

The event was witnessed by many dignitaries including a retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice George Oguntade, members of the body of Permanent Secretaries, families and relatives of the new appointees.

Reformed Destitutes Requested To Be Taken Home Not Deported– LASG

The Lagos State Security Council on Wednesday met with the State Commissioner of Police, Mr Umaru Manko, stating that the State has not deported anyone, but had merely taken back home destitutes who have been reformed following their request to be taken home and resettled.

Mr Manko, who fielded questions from State House Correspondents at the Lagos House, Ikeja after the meeting chaired by Governor Babatunde Fashola explained that no such thing as deportation took place in the State.

“There was no deportation per se. What happened was rehabilitation and resettlement of people from other parts of the country who came to Lagos and turned into destitutes, and revived, reformed and indicated their interest to go back home and they were taken back to their homes to be resettled. That was what happened and there was no deportation at all”, he said.

The Police Commissioner also said the Council has directed security officers to start enforcing the law that makes pushing trucks or wheel barrows on expressways an offence from today, adding that officers are going to be mandated to start arresting offenders.

He explained that under the Lagos Traffic laws, it constitutes an offence for people to push trucks or carts on the public highways and bridges, adding that such people should keep off the roads with carts and wheel barrows.

Mr Manko also spoke on the general security in the state extensively and re-assured Lagosians that the security situation in the state is perfect and that security operatives are on top of their jobs.