The Lagos state government has stated that the new transport policy is for the good of every road user. Kayode Opeifa, commissioner for transportation of the state said this in its determination to transform the public transportation industry, enhance professionalism, ensures standard and safety of the people. He made this disclosure at the last stakeholders’ forum on the new state taxi policy.
During his presentation at Alausa, Ikeja he said that with the new public transport management system, the state government would re-introduce the routing system in order to ensure even distribution of vehicles and non-inflation of transport fares especially during peak period amongst others.
He said that the routing system is in line with Regulation 20 of the Road Traffic Law with stipulates that “ no commercial vehicle shall stand or ply for hire on any route other than that for which it is authorised or as prescribed by the Ministry in respect of the vehicle.
Opeifa said that aside for the routing system, the commuter vehicle operator is expected to register himself, the driver and conductor after which a commercial vehicle operator license which could be individual or corporate based on the documentation of the owner.
He said that at the expiration of the registration, any commercial vehicle operator that does not have a license will not be able to operate in the State.
He added that the operation in addition, must have a third party insurance policy as well as the Lagos state insurance scheme.
The commissioner who said that about 200 Vehicle Inspection Officers (VIOs) have been trained to handle the documentation appealed to commuter vehicle operators and transport union to go to any of the 21 vehicle inspection service centres in their localities while the drivers and conductors should go to any of the five Lagos State Drivers Institute (LASDRI) in their division.
Opeifa while presenting the approved uniform of the drivers and conductors designed by the transport unions to stakeholders said that badges would also be issued to owner of commuter vehicles, drivers and commuters.
On the new state taxi policy system, he said that henceforth, anybody that want to also operate taxi system would obtain a license and such vehicle will be painted in the state government colour of yellow with black stripes except those belonging to the modern taxi system.
He added that the state government being compassionate to the demand of the taxi operators has also graciously approved the use of vehicle not more than 5 years old to be used as taxi
Opeifa said that with the license, the operators can get financial assistance from the banking sector.
The commissioner added that efforts is ongoing to ensure that there are taxi stands in hotels and major shopping malls in the state. In his closing remarks, Bisi Yusuf, Lagos State house of assembly chairman on transport, commended efforts of various stakeholders in attendance and urged them to cooperate with government in ensuring the workability of the newly approved public transport management system policy.
In attendance at the forum were transport unions, civil right societies, the banks, human right activists, non-governmental organisations and insurance companies amongst others.
By: Mike Ochonma