Nigeria may experience another round of fuel scarcity soon, as tanker drivers under the umbrella of the Association of Maritime Truck Owners (AMATO), yesterday withdrew their services and stayed away from the seaports following the federal and Lagos Stage governments’ directives to them to cease parking along the seaport road, Oshodi-Apapa Expressway.
Thousands of man hours were being lost daily as people doing business in Apapa and at the seaports went through terrible traffic gridlock at the Apapa-Mile 2 end of the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway. The ugly traffic situation persisted for several years, with all government’s efforts to checkmate it resulting in failure.
Having defied several approaches by the government to checkmate the traffic gridlock, the Federal Government and the Lagos State Government issued separate directives last week to the tanker drivers, who have been blamed for the situation to leave the road.
In compliance with the directives, the tanker drivers filled up the inadequate parking space opposite the Tin Can Port and other spaces around the ports, including the spaces around Ijora and Lilypond Port.
But the Lagos State Government issued another directive to them to leave the Lilypond area, leading the drivers into frustration.
Speaking with LEADERSHIP on the telephone yesterday, the chairman of AMATO, Chief Remi Ogungbemi said the tanker drivers had withdrawn their services from the ports for now as the government directives were too frustrating.
“Government is second to God. They have asked us to leave the road and we have left. But the frustration we are having now is that the Lagos State Government has given us another directive this afternoon to leave the space at Lilypond.
“We have therefore withdrawn our services from the ports. We are not on strike but we have decided to withdraw our services from the ports.