Residents and motor­ists appear to have heaved a sigh of re­lief with the take-off of the electronic call-up sys­tem at Lagos seaports at the weekend.

The major access roads into the Apapa corridor were now substantially free of traf­fic congestion.

Throughout business hours on Monday, there was free passage of vehicles in and out of the area.

Truckers were not left out in the euphoria that report­edly greeted the new devel­opment.

They gently filed into the seaports without any hin­drance. The ever-busy Wharf road leading to Apapa Port was vacated by deviant trucks that used to clog the gate.

Sanity was observed to be gradually returning to the Apapa corridor, thanks to the innovative approach initiated by the Nigerian Port Author­ity (NPA) and the Lagos State government.

A trucker, Usman Musa, welcomed the development, saying the electronic solution had brought an end to years of agony he had faced on the route.

“It’s a new lease of life for truck operations around the seaports”, he stated.

“If anyone had told me there would be a time when traffic at Marine Beach would flow freely as being seen today (Monday), I would contest it. The last four years were ago­nising for most of us working in this area. I used to spend three hours for 15 minutes journey,” Musa said.

Following the launch of the e-call up platform and traffic enforcement in Apa­pa by joint task force teams raised by the Lagos State government and the NPA, bottlenecks contrived by law enforcement agencies and port officials were disman­tled and trucks were cleared off the routes, resulting in free movement of traffic in Apapa.

Applauding the progress recorded, Musa said: “We support the action of the government in solving this problem and we have started to comply with the order that prohibits parking our trailers on the highways.”

A transporter, Ismail Olai­tan, admitted that the innova­tion introduced had reorgan­ised the chaotic operation of trucks around the seaports, praising Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and Managing Director of NPA, Mrs. Hadi­za Bala Usman, for displaying strong will in enforcing the change.

He said: “We are happy with this development. When the electronic call-up system was launched at the weekend, most of our colleagues took their trucks off the roads and moved into Lilypond Termi­nal in compliance.

“This new system will bring about positive impacts on our business, and this is why we are embracing it with joy. The old system had only brought us pain and sorrow.”

A property owner, Aloy­sius Oriakwu, was full of praise for the state govern­ment for the enforcement of the traffic along the corridor.

He said businesses using his property as office space left at the height of perennial congestion that turned Apapa into a no-go area.

“I can now put my proper­ty up for rent again after four years. I support the initiative introduced by the govern­ment and this must be sus­tained to prevent recurrence of the congestion,” Oriakwu said.

A truck owner, Isiaka Mahmud, also expressed ex­citement with the launch of the e-call up initiative, saying the innovation would address corruption in loading sched­ules at the ports.

To consolidate on the progress recorded in Apapa following the launch of the e-call up system, the state gov­ernment’s task force team, led by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Hon. Toyin Fayinka, relocat­ed to the area on Monday to enforce the traffic regulations.

Commissioner of Po­lice, Mr. Hakeem Odumosu, dismantled all checkpoints mounted by the police along the Apapa corridor from Surulere into the seaports.

According to the police boss, the checkpoints were part of the factors creating traffic along the Apapa cor­ridor.

Odumosu warned that dire consequences awaited any officer who returned to the Apapa routes to create an unapproved beat.

Odumosu, however, al­lowed a checkpoint in front of Sifax Depot for enforcement purposes only by men of the Lagos State Traffic Manage­ment Authority (LASTMA).

While the development had been roundly hailed by residents and business opera­tors, some man-made obstruc­tions were yet to be addressed in the initiative.

Access into some of the approved parking lots created for trucks were still being ob­structed by illegal structures and trading activities, making it difficult for trucks to move into the parks.

Although the state gov­ernment’s taskforce removed most of the illegal structures before the take-off of the e-call up system, some of the occu­pants were yet to leave.