By Dada Jackson
Lagos State Government has announced the resuscitation of the environmental sanitation competition among all local governments and council areas in the state.
Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Tunji Bello, in a statement, said the competition was being brought back to reawaken the consciousness of every resident with local governments serving as the pivot of the campaign.
Bello explained that since the programme suffered a setback in 2017 through a court stoppage of the monthly environmental sanitation, adding that everyone had let down their guard, thus aggravating various environmental issues.
He stated that part of the benefits derivable was bringing about healthy competition in sanitation and hygiene practices amongst communities, markets and LG/LCDA.
Others are improvement in the environmental conditions of the state especially on highways, roads and streets, markets, schools and discourage illegal street trading.
The commissioner said the competition would take input of actors in the communities including local government chairmen, community leaders, traditional rulers, transport unions and market leaders.
He informed that an assessment committee which would start work in May had been constituted with membership drawn from the Environment Ministry and Local Government and Community Affairs and other relevant MDAs to inspect all public utilities.
The assessment committee will also inspect the general aesthetics of the scheduled LG/LCDA and the commitment of each to environmental management.
Bello listed some of the criteria for the assessment of each LG/LCDA to include culture of bagging of refuse, clean and flowing drains, LAWMA PSP patronage and vegetal control.
Others are markets cleanliness; landscaping and beautification of LG/LCDA secretariat; control of illegal structures, shanties, black spots, illegal refuse dumps; encroachment on drainage setbacks; street trading, abandoned buildings, land and properties.
The assessment is expected to be rounded off in November with an award ceremony during which mouth-watering prizes will be presented to the winner and first runners-up LG/LCDA, according to the commissioner.
Consolation prizes would be given to the cleanest market, school, environmental sanitation friendly motor park/garage amongst others, he added.
Gunmen attack Rivers SDP gov candidate Magnus Abe campaign train
Gunmen suspected to be hired assassins on Monday evening attacked the campaign train of the governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in Rivers State, Senator Magnus Abe.
The gunmen, according to Leadership, carried out the attack at Akinima community in the Ahoada-West local government area of the state.
Abe and his team had earlier visited Ubeta and other communities in the area before heading for Akinima, the headquarters of the local government area, when they came under heavy gun attack.
DSS intercepts syndicates selling new currency notes
The Department of State Services (DSS) said it has intercepted some syndicates in parts of the country for their involvement in selling the new redesigned Naira notes.
The service disclosed this in a statement on Monday by its spokesman,Dr Peter Afunanya saying that the syndicates were intercepted by operatives of the service during an operation.
“Investigation has also shown that some Commercial Bank officials were aiding the economic malfeasance.
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“Consequently, the Service warns the currency racketeers to desist from this ignoble act.
“Appropriate regulatory authorities are, in this same vein,urged to step up monitoring and supervisory activities to expeditiously address the emerging trends,”he said.
He said the DSS has ordered its commands and formations to further ensure that all persons and groups engaged in the illegal sale of the notes were identified.
The DSS spokesman, therefore, urged anyone with useful information relating to the sales of the new currency to pass the same to relevant authorities.
Accidents: FRSC boss recommends truck barrier on Ojuelegba Bridge, warns against ‘one-way’ driving
The Federal Road Safety Corps has recommended the construction of a truck barrier on Ojuelegba Bridge in the Surulere area of Lagos to prevent articulated vehicles especially trucks carrying containers from using the bridge and falling on other vehicles.
The FRSC Corps Marshal, Dauda Biu, made the recommendation while reacting to an accident around the bridge on Sunday in which a container-carrying truck fell on a passenger bus, killing nine people including two children.
A statement by the Corps Public Education Officer of the FRSC, Bisi Kazeem reported the corps marshal as expressing deep concerns over the fatal accident, which he noted was becoming a regular occurrence.
Biu also spoke on another accident recorded on Sunday that claimed 11 lives on Soka Bridge on the Lagos-Benin Highway and warned against excessive speeding and driving against the traffic popularly called one-way.
The statement said, “Whilst his concerns stem from the reoccurring container crashes on Ojuelegba bridge that has claimed several lives, the Corps Marshal recommends the construction of barricades against articulated vehicles (tankers, trucks, trailers and other heavy duty vehicles) on Ojuelegba Bridge as a permanent solution to the reoccurring crashes.”
The corps marshal who frowned on the incident explained the importance of barricading the bridge against articulated vehicles citing some of the dangers that come with their continuous use of the bridge as he called for efforts to be made towards expanding the connecting roads under the bridge to accommodate all articulated vehicles.
He revealed that FRSC rescue teams in collaboration with other Emergency Management Agencies had cleared obstructions from the crash scenes for ease of movement while the driver of the Mack truck had been arrested and handed over to the police for further investigation and possible prosecution.
The corps marshal also reiterated the need for the enactment of laws that will bring justice to victims of these crashes and where such laws already exist, efforts should be made to activate them so that justice will be served accordingly to both the drivers and the victims.
It stated that a preliminary investigation conducted into the fatal crashes revealed that the Ojuelegba crash involved a Mack Truck with a 40ft container with the registration number KJA 380 KD, who apart from engaging in excessive speed, also indulged in an act of wrongful overtaking and a Suzuki mini bus registered as KTU 921 YD; while the Soka avoidable menace involved a truck driven against the traffic and a Macopolo bus.
The statement said, “The container mounted on the Mack truck at Ojuelegba, according to our operatives, fell off the truck and landed on the Suzuki mini bus filled up with passengers which obviously led to the death of 9 of the passengers.
“As at the time of this statement, 11 victims were burnt beyond recognition at the Soka Bridge while the Ojuelegba crash involved 13 people comprising of nine males and four females. Out of the 13 people, nine were killed comprising five male adults, one male child, one female child and two female adults.
“Out of the four victims who survived the Ojuelegba crash, two were rescued without injuries while the remaining two sustained various degrees of injuries.
He urged the public to always use the FRSC toll free line 122 and the National Traffic Radio 107.1 FM which are always available for all road users to report emergencies at any given time.
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