As the current dispensations at the federal and state levels give way to new beginnings, it is time to take stock and review the achievements or otherwise of the different governments.
However, of interest here is the transport projects embarked upon by the government of Akinwunmi Ambode, the outgoing governor of Nigeria’s economic capital, Lagos state.
Worthy of note is the fact that Ambode had earlier made it very clear that transportation remains one of the three key interests of his government. And he made moves in this regard to justify this.
Key among the achievements of the Ambode government is the acquisition of no fewer than 820 medium and high capacity buses under its public transportation transformation of Bus Reform Initiative, to meet the yearnings of its citizenry.
The government should also take credit for the construction and timely completion of the Oshodi-International Airport road, which had hitherto been an eye sour, especially as it can be said to be an international passage way.
Closely related to this is the construction of designated bus lane on the Oshodi-Ota corridor, which is expected to significantly ease traffic on the ever busy route.
Completion of modern terminal at Ikeja, and the on-going construction of others at Yaba, Oyingbo, Ojota, Agege, and Ajah, are also worthy of commendation.
Others that are also visible are the reformation of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), provision of lay-bys, establishment of the computerised vehicle inspection service among others.
Not all about the roads, as the Ambode government was also able to make some impact, though not up to expectation, on water transport with the ferry services and rejuvenation of the Lagos Waterways Authority (LASWA).
Nonetheless, we also noticed some shortcomings. Some are the forceful attempt to evict inter-state transport operators from Jibowu, without adequate consultations; the erection of barriers on some roads in the city which were not necessary and the little or no attention given to the construction of the railway line from Marina to Okokomaiko, which has resulted in untold hardship on motorists plying the Mile 2- Okokomaiko route.
We are not also comfortable that the governor was so much in a hurry to commission uncompleted projects, even when it is very glaring that the incoming government will still have to do a lot of work before completion of some of these projects.
It is our expectation that the Sanwo-Olu government will consolidate from where Ambode stopped, and try to avoid some of the pitfalls that dented some of the achievements of Ambode in the transportation sector.