By Olutayo Irantiola
In his efforts to advance security in Lagos, Governor Akinwunmi Ambode promised to ensure that Lagos roads are glowing at night.
This dream is slowly becoming a reality and people are now assured that the state government is truly committed to their security.
The beautification of many cities that are seen in movies or from aerial views is dependent on the availability of street lights; the beauty of Lagos at night will illuminated by still and motion cameras.
At some points, Lagos looks fragmented in the provision of street lights; the highbrow areas of Ikoyi, Victoria Island and the Third Mainland Bridge are well lit at night but from the Oworonsoki end of the road towards Berger, darkness is an all too familiar reminder that crime thrives on, where hoodlums operate with impunity on commuters. As the roads are now lit appropriately, the efforts of the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) can be felt by the populace.
The street lights have been of immense help, especially during the harmattan haze when visibility is greatly reduced. It is a known fact that many ‘tokunbo’ vehicles imported into this country have poor headlamps because there is no need for halogen lamps on vehicles when the street lights are working. With the street lights, drivers now have respite.
In the same vein, road carnage which occurs regularly on Nigerian roads is expected to decrease significantly in Lagos with the revival of street lights. Many vehicles have run into stationary vehicles because there is no sign to indicate that the vehicle is grounded. There have been instances where vehicles are vandalized overnight or drivers are attacked while trying to get a solution to moving their broken down cars off the road. The street lights will help stranded commuters a great deal.
Complaints about vandalized social amenities will reduce largely as well.
The revamp of street lights is also a way of getting the government agency in charge of it to be meaningfully engaged; there are many agencies that have gone dormant because they are not rendering their services to the government and the citizenry. This is a challenge to all directors and permanent secretaries to bring to the notice of the governor activities that can improve the state to the benefit of the populace and provide employment for skilled people.
Suggestions the Help Lagos Glow
State Government is implored to ensure that the light for pedestrian bridges is also used because hoodlums make use of these bridges to perpetrate their illegal enterprises both at dawn and at dusk. Old bridges without the capacity for street lights should be reconstructed at least partially or completely.
Lastly, newly improved technology which consumes less electrical power and solar-powered street lights can be used to reduce the cost of procuring and maintaining these social amenities.
Lagos is truly progressing in the days of Akinwumi Ambode and nobody should be a clog in the wheel of the progress of the state. Lagos is sprouting everyday to be not only the choice destination in Nigeria but also in Africa. More strategic work needs to be done to completely transform the state to the status of a mega-city which is the dream of her founding fathers.
Olutayo Irantiola is a Lagos based publicist and writer, he is also passionate about events that drive Nigeria into the future and loves all things Nigerian politics and entertainment.