Traffic Gridlock: Lagos Directs Petrol Stations to Close by 4pm

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By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Petrol stations located along the major roads in Lagos will now operate from 9 am to 4 pm daily, the Lagos State government has directed.

A statement signed by the Commissioner for Transportation, Mr Frederic Oladeinde, explained that the move was to curtail the traffic gridlock witnessed around such fuelling stations in the metropolis.

The incessant scarcity of premium motor spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol, in the city and other parts of Nigeria has caused vehicles to queue for the product, causing a clog in vehicular movement.

Most of the queues are seen around petrol stations belonging to major oil marketers because of their pump price. At the moment, most of them sell at the official price of N169 per litre, while other fuelling stations sell between N240 per litre and N260 per litre.

The quest to buy cheaper fuel has forced most motorists to queue for many hours at stations selling the official pump price.

To address traffic caused by the queues and ensure the free flow of vehicular movement in the metropolis, the state government has moved to “regulate the activities of major and independent petroleum marketers operating along major roads and traffic-prone areas within the state,” according to the statement.

Mr Oladeinde said the state government was not happy with the “indiscriminate activities of motorists queuing to buy petroleum products and often impeding the free flow of traffic on some roads.”

He said the government has now decided to ensure that, “petroleum marketers whose filling stations are situated on major highways and areas susceptible to traffic will henceforth be allowed to operate only between the hours of 9 am to 4 pm daily, pending when the fuel shortage crisis subsides.”

The Commissioner added that the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), Vehicle Inspection Service (VIS), Transport Operations Compliance Unit (TOCU) and other law enforcement agencies have been charged to ensure a seamless flow of traffic across the State.

Mr Oladeinde urged “all major and independent petroleum marketers operating across the state to comply with the directive to avoid sanctions.”

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