Commisoner explains reason behind the delay of lekki toll gate facility utilization

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Three years after the EndSARS protests, the Lagos Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotosho, revealed that the reason the operations at the Lekki Tollgate and the Ikoyi Link Bridge have not resumed is because the facilities sustained significant damage that will cost a lot of money to repair.

In a Tuesday interview, Omotosho characterized the events of the October 2020 EndSARS rally as “a kind of war visited on Lagos.”

Thousands of young people from across the nation took to the streets in early October 2020 to demand the disbandment of the violent Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Nigeria Police Force. This was in response to the Nigerian Labour Congress calling off its planned nationwide protest.

Up until the shooting at the Lekki Tollgate on October 20, 2020, the protests had worldwide attention and support and had forced the closure of several important national infrastructures.

Since then, appeals have been made, especially in Lagos, for justice for the people who died during the demonstration. Additionally, some protestors have insisted that the Lekki toll gate shouldn’t be opened again until those who lost their lives during the demonstration receive justice.

On Tuesday, Juwon Sanyaoulu, the national coordinator of the human rights organization Take It Back campaign, announced that the campaign had succeeded in getting three #EndSARS protesters—Sunday Okoro, Olumide Fatai, and Oluwole Yisa—released from prison “after a year of legal process.”

Amnesty International while reacting to their release on X, said it “welcomes the discharge and acquittal today of Sunday Okoro, Olumide Fatai and Oluwole Isa who have been detained at Kirikiri Medium Correctional Centre, Lagos State for participating in #EndSARS protests in October 2020.”

Speaking to reporters about the Lekki Tollgate that isn’t working, Omotosho, the Lagos Commissioner for Information and Strategy said, “All of the things that Lagos took pride in were attacked and destroyed. The Lagos High Court, which is iconic, the seat of government; the DNA laboratory, the first of its kind in West Africa, then hundreds of buses, including the media houses – they set fire to TVC, The Nation. It was a season of madness.

So the toll gate was also a victim. It had nothing to do with the problem but it’s also a victim. So for the state government to return to that kind of business overnight, it will take time because they need to reinstall the equipment to make people know it’s in service.

“They need to maintain the bridge. They need to do periodic checks on the bridge. So I think getting this equipment is a question of money, personnel, installation and all of that. Some day, it (those things) will return to the Lekki-Ikoyi Link Bridge.”

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Alex Obichie
Alex Obichie
Alex Obichie is an Ardent Sustainability Enthusiast, advocate for the Waste-2-Wealth Initiative, and Ingenious Politician, he uses articles to promote and sensitize the public about matters surrounding the environment, political systems and ways to benefit & support sustsinable global development.

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