The Lagos State Government has warned traders not to display their wares on the road thereby causing traffic gridlock and other environmental nuisance.
Governor Akinwunmi Ambode handed down the warning at a meeting with leaders of Agbado Oke-Odo Market held at Lagos House in Ikeja on Wednesday, saying the activities of the traders who are in such habit had reached a level which the government could no longer condone, hence the need for a final warning.
Mr Ambode, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Tunji Bello, said leaders of markets in the state have been warned and counselled severally on the need to rein in their market men and women to desist from disturbing others through their trading activities on the roads, but some have become adamant.
He said aside causing avoidable and needless traffic, the traders were also in the habit of dumping their refuse on the road, thereby causing environmental and health hazards.
He said: “This is just to come and deliberate on the Agbado Oke-Odo Market because of the situation there. The market has become a stumbling block particularly to those using the road. The traders have blocked the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway to the extent that even the contractors working there don’t have place to work because they have taken over the area.
“They cause a lot of traffic gridlock and people coming from Ota or from Abule Egba don’t have the road to connect other areas of the State. We have warned them consistently but we are yet to get any result. That is why we have summoned today’s meeting.
“The meeting is basically to call them to order and give them the last warning. The idea initially was to shut down the market today but the Governor decided that we should give them just one week to put things in order.”
He said in as much as government was not interested in shutting down markets, but it would have no choice than to wield the big stick if traders continue constituting themselves as menace to other road users.
Responding on behalf of others, Babaloja Araromi Agbado Oke-Odo, Alhaji Mukaila Oyinlola, said as market leaders, they have warned the traders who are in the habit of selling on the road to desist, but their warnings have fallen on deaf ears, adding that the resolve of government was a welcome development.
Also, Iyaloja Araromi Oke-Odo Market, Mrs Dupe Shonola and Babaloja General of Agbado Oke-Odo Market, Alhaji Abiodun Kosoko urged government to make examples of the perpetrators of the illegal act, but called for expansion and modernization of the market.