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Expect Operational Rail Transport in Lagos by 2022—LAMATA



Rail Transport Lagos

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Lagos State Government, through the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA), has reassured citizens that the state would have an operational railway line by 2022.

This was disclosed by the Managing Director of LAMATA, Mrs Abimbola Akinajo, while speaking at a milestone meeting on the implementation of the Lagos Rail Mass Transit (LRMT) Red and Blue Line projects with the contractors and consultants.

Mrs Akinajo said the meeting was to reiterate the already established positions on the timeline for the delivery of the rail lines to passenger operation.

The Red Line is one of seven rail lines identified in the state’s strategic transport masterplan for the mass movement of commuters and reduction of congestion for which the state is popular for.

The LAMATA MD underscored the importance of the 24-kilometre stretch between Oyingbo and Agbado, representing the first phase of the 37-kilometre railroad project, to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and the people of the state, saying that railway was one of the ways cities deal with traffic congestion.

“The Red Line is supposed to be a quick win because it will share tracks with the Nigerian Railway Corporation on its Lagos – Ibadan rail corridor. There will be no delays, no budget or cost overrun and there will not be any shift in the delivery date.

“Our meeting is just to take stock of what we have done so far since this project started and to re-emphasise that there is no room for slippage in the delivery of the Red Line,” she added.

In order to ensure train movement is not obstructed, Mrs Akinajo stated that four overpasses and three pedestrian bridges will be constructed to eliminate level crosses and pedestrian access on the rail tracks and guarantee the unhindered movement of the train which would have eight minutes headway, whilst ensuring safety by eliminating vehicular and pedestrian interactions along the rail line.

“Our projection is that the first phase of the Red Line will carry between 350,000 and 400,000 passengers daily. So, we would not compromise on the agreed timelines. Funding for the project is ready and secured, so there will not be any funding issue,” she stated.

Also speaking, Director of Rail Transportation at LAMATA, Mr Olasunkanmi Okusaga, reiterated that the contractors and consultants on the projects must work together saying challenges must be quickly reported and resolved in a way that would be beneficial to timely delivery of the projects.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.


Bolt, Uber Drivers Stop Work Over Hike in Petrol Prices



uber drivers lagos

By Adedapo Adesanya

Ride-hailing drivers are reportedly embarking on a three-day nationwide strike, demanding a 200 per cent increase in fares before returning to work.

According to a report by Tech Cabal, Bolt, LagRide, Indriver and Uber drivers, under the aegis of the Amalgamated Union of App-based Transport Workers of Nigeria (AUATWON), are observing a sit-at-home over the recent hike in petrol prices.

In addition to the increase in fare prices, the drivers are also asking for a slash in the commission charged by app operators. For context, Uber and Bolt collect a 20 per cent commission on every ride, but the drivers want this slashed to 10 per cent.

They are also seeking recognition of the body as the sole representative when it comes to issues around labour and demands as well as to stop the deactivation of drivers who refuse to work due to unfair environment.

The publication quoted the National Vice President for Southwest Nigeria (AUATWON), Mr Kolawole Aina, as saying, “Each local government in Lagos State and, by extension, all states in Nigeria will be protesting today at the same time.

“All e-hailing platforms are shut down from today till Friday… The riders should find another alternative,”.

Business Post understands that on Friday, June 2, Bolt had increased its base fare prices in reaction to the resulting hike in fuel prices after President Bola Tinubu announced an end to fuel subsidy, one month before it was to officially end based on the 2023 budget.

In a blog post, Bolt said, “From 2 June 2023, ride prices in Nigeria are changing due to increased operating costs drivers incur while driving with Bolt.”

The updated base fare, minimum fare, kilometre fee, and minute fee varied in Lagos and other cities.

In Lagos, it reviewed the base fare to N527, with the kilometre fee put at N130 at a per minute cost of N23.3o and a minimum fare of N800. In Abuja, the base fare was upped to N350, with a kilometre fee put at N88 at a per minute cost of N1o.00 and a minimum fare of N700, while in Port Harcourt, the base fare to N370, with a kilometre fee put at N123 at a per minute cost of N17 and a minimum fare of N700.

Other cities, including Benin City, Owerri, Calabar, Ibadan, Uyo, and Jos, were equally updated.

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Groups Partner to Train African Women in Logistics



WiLAT AWISCA Women in Logistics

South Africa’s African Women in Supply Chain Association (AWISCA) has signed an MOU with the Women in Logistics & Transport (WiLAT) organisation from Côte D’Ivoire to collaborate on the delivery of tailor-made entrepreneurial skills training in the logistics and supply chain and to bolster such capacities across the African continent through mentorship, training and coaching.

AWISCA is an organisation focused on the upliftment, empowerment and transformation of Sub-Saharan Africa’s supply chain skills environment. The association aims to address shortages and capacity gaps and to provide integrated solutions that confront such challenges pragmatically.

Founded by Lebo Letsoalo, a globally renowned supply chain champion and expert, the association also intends to bring the supply chain curriculum across African higher education institutions to a globally competitive level.

In this partnership with WiLAT, the two will develop a programme to unlock the continent’s potential through entrepreneurship, anchored around the varied opportunities within the scope of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement.

“The programme will necessitate the development of the relevant skills in entrepreneurship within the supply chain and logistic sectors to effectively take advantage of the opportunities in the AfCFTA agreement, especially for the youth and women on the continent”, says Lebo Letsoalo, Founder and Director of AWISCA.

The partnership will also foster a mentorship and coaching-based student exchange program that will see supply chain and logistics students from Côte D’Ivoire visit South Africa on a skills transfer and exchange mission and the same for South African students.

The entrepreneurship element of the training will be offered to emerging entrepreneurs in the same space, with a key focus on the technical skills relevant to the AfCFTA agreement and through enterprise and supplier development.

WiLAT Côte D’Ivoire is an organisation which promotes the social status of women in the supply chain, logistics and transport industries and coordinates the efforts of other organisations that aid the career development of women and women entrepreneurs in Africa.

Chairperson of WiLAT CI Carine Toure Yemtia says that the agreement with AWISCA will see it expand and extend its programmes to many more women and countries on the continent: “Over and above the skills development initiatives, the understanding seeks to develop advanced curriculum and further training that will benefit women in the sector. We want also to help create relevant policies that will empower and uplift women in our industries, especially in the Franco Nations.”

AWISCA and WiLAT Côte D’Ivoire will work collaboratively, reaching many economies across the SSA over the next three years. It will also collaborate with other companies and organisations with the desired expertise to deliver on the mentioned objectives.

AWISCA is already partnering with WiLAT SA and CILT SA (The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport) and will expand the partnerships across various African countries.

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Future Women Conference Honours Simba TVS



Simba TVS

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

For supporting and empowering Nigerian women through its Queen Riders Program, Simba TVS has won the African Brand of the Year 2023 at the Future Women Conference held in Lagos.

The mobility solutions provider in Nigeria put in place the Queen Riders program to empower underrepresented women in the nation’s burgeoning commercial transportation industry.

While receiving the award, the Business Head of Simba TVS, Mr Mahendra Pratap, highlighted the importance of women’s empowerment in the growth and development of every society.

According to him, the Queen Riders Program is built on four pillars of Opportunity, Development, Empowerment, and Independence and has successfully enriched the lives and livelihoods of hundreds of women across different parts of the country.

“Through the Queen Riders program, Simba TVS provides training for women on vehicle riding and repairs, mentorship, and access to financing. The program has seen women who were once marginalized and excluded from the formal economy become entrepreneurs and leaders in their communities,” Mr Pratap said.

He revealed that Simba’s stance on women empowerment has also contributed to the organisation setting up a dedicated motorcycle conveyor line for female assemblers in their Lagos factory to provide women with employment opportunities, adding that the line is manned exclusively by women.

“We believe that by empowering women, we are not only transforming their lives but also contributing to the growth and development of Nigeria, ensuring that women have the confidence, skills, and support they need to succeed in whatever they choose to do,” Mr Pratap stated.

The 2023 Future Women Conference 2023, organised by the Women in Africa for Transformation Initiative, was attended by several personalities, including the wife of the Ooni of Ife, Mrs Aderonke Ademiluyi Ogunwusi, who commended Simba TVS for introducing the Queen Rider Program which she acknowledged had impacted positively in transforming the lives of women.

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