Some commuters on Monday in Lagos expressed their happiness over the opening of the completed Section 1of the Apapa-Wharf Road currently undergoing reconstruction to traffic.
They told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in separate interviews that it was a great relief to them.
They said that the Federal Government and other financiers of the project had reduced the wear-and- tear they normally experienced on the route.
NAN reports that AG Dangote Construction Company Ltd, the contractors handling the project, opened the section on the Ijora/CMS bound carriageway to light traffic on March 8.
The completed section is about 500-metres long.
A correspondent of NAN on site observed that the contractor used an overhead row to prevent heavy duty vehicles from plying the road.
This is while approaching the Apapa Bridge on the Ijora/CMS bound carriageway.
NAN investigations also revealed that the overhead row will be removed after some days and the section would be opened to heavy traffic.
Mrs Joy Ekele, a resident of Apapa, told NAN that sanity was gradually being restored to Apapa area of Lagos State with the ongoing reconstruction.
“I did not believe my eyes when I drove through the road for the first time last Thursday.
“I am happy that the traffic jam we the residents had been facing will soon be a thing of the past.
“Those of us living in Apapa have really suffered and I am happy that this project is finally a reality.
“ God bless AG Dangote Construction Company Limited and the other companies that contributed money to fix this road,” she said.
Mahmood Saleh, a commercial motorcycle operator who plies the Ijora -Apapa axis told NAN that the opening would reduce congestion on the highway.
He said that the bad road had endangered lives of riders and passengers in the past.
“I am very happy now because the road will be more spacious for both vehicles and motorcycles to ply.
“We will not be maneuvering in between the articulated trucks like before.’’
“I want to thank Alhaji Aliko Dangote and all the people that supported this project.
Saleh commended AG Dangote for its services to humanity.
Also, a freight forwarder, Mr Moses Epkebor and Mr Ephraim Anya, a teacher in one of the primary schools in Orile Iganmu near Lagos, applauded the Federal Government and financiers of the project.
They said it had reduced gridlock around the area.
Mr Patrick Adenusi, a traffic expert with MIS Advisory Services, Traffic Consultants to the project told NAN that road users were happy with the reduction in gridlock.
“Road users are so appreciative, some of them wave at us as we direct traffic to say thank you.
“Others expressed surprise that a section of the road had been opened to traffic and not waiting till everything was completed.
“Last Friday, I stayed at the junction between Mobil and Marine Beach for two hours directing traffic and telling them that they should use the bridge.
“They were full of gratitude was very high,’’ he said.
Adenusi said that cars now spend lesser hours to travel than it used to be before in and out of Apapa.
“Hopefully, we might be directing trucks to ply the road this weekend and that will ease the pressure on Marine Beach to Naval Dockyard road,” Adenusi said.
NAN reports that the Apapa-Wharf Road currently under reconstruction is a four-kilometre stretch divided into two kilometres on each carriageway.
Construction is currently ongoing on the two kilometres on the Ijora/CMS bound carriageway and the construction is divided into four sections.
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, had on June 17, 2017 signed a N4.34 billion Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) agreement with AG Dangote Construction Company Limited and some other stakeholders.
It was for the reconstruction of the four-kilometre Apapa-Wharf Road.
The project is being funded by AG Dangote Construction Company Ltd., the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and Flour Mills of Nigeria.