As part of the preventive measures to further curb the spread of COVID-19 as outlined by the State Government, Lagos State Ministry of Transportation today held a sensitization meeting with the Executives of major Stakeholders in the transport business including; the National Union of Road Transport Workers ( NURTW), and the Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN).

The meeting which was held at the Ministry’s Conference Room, the Secretariat Alausa Ikeja was aimed at educating the stakeholders in the transport system especially public transportation on the need to join hands with the State Government in public awareness campaign against the spread of the deadly Corona virus

Addressing the Transport Union Leaders, the Honourable Commissioner for Home Affairs, Prince Olanrewaju Elegushi urged them to fully engage their members on the preventive measures already in place to forestall further spread of the virus.

Elegushi admonished the union leaders to encourage their members on the need for regular handwashing with soaps, application of hand sanitizers and most importantly reduction in the numbers of passengers in their buses in their daily transport routine.

The Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Transportation, Hon. Toyin Fayinka also affirmed that prevention of further spread of the virus should be paramount to all and sundry, hence the reason for the gathering to deliberate on the public transportation seating arrangement, to avoid overloading by reducing the number of passengers in their vehicles to stop further spread of the virus.

He encouraged the transport union members to be vigilant, meticulous and exercise utmost caution in
working together with the State Government to rid of COVID-19.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation, Mr. Sewedo Oluseyi Whenu who was also present at the meeting coroborated the State Government efforts to forestall further spread of the virus by ensuring the installation of soap and hand sanitizers dispensers in all Ministries, Departments and Agencies.

Whenu implored the Transport Stakeholders to do same by ensuring the provision of these sanitary facilities in their motor parks.

Highlighting the origin of COVID-19 to Lagos and the imperatives of avoiding body to body contact within the transportation system, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Health, Dr. Mrs Finnih implored the Union Executives to be mindful of the loading of passengers into their transport buses to check the excesses and spread of Corona virus within the polity.

At the end of the meeting, a communique was reached on the following;

1. No standing of commuters in all public transport buses
Including the high capacity buses
2. Mini buses should have not more 2 passengers seated in a row.
3. The transport unions should ensure that sanitizers and thermometers are available at their respective motor parks.
4. The transport Unions are to report any suspected case of COVID-19 to the government.
5. The Unions were urged to observe the State Government’s latest guidelines banning large gatherings of people to protect the health and safety of Lagosians.
6. The transport unions agreed to hype their personal hygiene which is the most important preventive mechanism for the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Ayomide Oyewole

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