President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday hailed Lagos State Governor Akinwunmi Ambode for developing the state within three years.
He spoke while inaugurating Ikeja Bus Terminal, shortly after arriving the state for a two-day official visit.
The President, in his brief remarks during the ceremony, praised Ambode for his reform in public transportation.
He said the Federal Government would adhere to its plan for the ports and other transport infrastructure.
Buhari reiterated his administration’s commitment to tackling insecurity, stabilising the economy, creating an enabling environment for jobs and returning Nigeria to its pride of place in the comity of nations.
Ambode thanked President Buhari for waiving the import duty on the 5,000 air-conditioned buses, which will be operated from the terminal.
He said the state looked forward to having an assembly plant for the buses in the next 20 months.
Ambode said his administration was committed to improving public transport infrastructure and management.
He said with the state’s bus reform project, 5,000 buses would be introduced in the next three years.
According to him, 820 environmentally-friendly high-capacity buses, in the first phase, are expected by September.
Works and Infrastructure Commissioner Ade Akinsanya said the terminal was part of the bus reform initiative, based on recommendations of the 2015 Lagos Transport Summit.
The terminal has a concourse for arrival, ticketing, waiting and departure areas, loading bay, ATM gallery as well as food court and parking facilities.
It is designed to change the face of public transportation and will convey more than 200,000 passengers daily to over 22 destinations.
The facility, which is sitting on a 10,000 square metre-land, is equipped with Intelligent Transport System (ITS), free Wi-Fi and electronically controlled shades, among others.
Through the ITS, passengers can be informed of the departure time and arrival of the next bus, which allows them to plan their movement.
The facility was designed and constructed by Planet Projects, an indigenous construction firm.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the President’s plane landed about 9:30 am at the Presidential Wing of the airport.
Buhari was received by Ambode and top officers of security outfits at the airport, including the Police, Air Force, Immigration Service, Customs Service and National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.
He inspected a ceremonial guard of honour before proceeding to the Ikeja Bus Terminus for the inauguration.
The President returned to the airport later and proceeded to Lagos Island via a chopper to attend a colloquium in honour of the National leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
NAN reports that security operatives re-opened the General Aviation Terminal , which was earlier barricaded, shortly after the departure of the President for the colloquium.
Buhari received a rousing welcome from Nigerians who lined the airport road to catch a glimpse of him.
The crowd chanted “Sai Baba ” as the President’s motorcade made its way back to the airport after inauguration of the bus terminal. (The Nation )