– Gives contractor weekly target of N125,000
Lagos — THE leadership of the Apapa Local Government Council in Lagos State is currently struggling to rid itself of alleged illegal toll collection along the Apapa port access roads.
The Council was alleged to have contracted an organization to execute the collections on trucks using the Apapa port access roads and truck parks, an allegation the Council has denied saying that whoever collects money from drivers were impersonating its officials.
However, there are reports that the leadership of the Council contracted the collection of toll from truck drivers to a third party with an instruction to remit N125,000 every week to the coffers of the Council.
In the contract letter signed by Mrs. Otaiku Okoka, Council Manager and titled, ‘Re-Notification of award as a revenue Contractor on collection of truck tolls within Apapa, Lagos State’, and addressed to the Managing Director, Leo George, Apapa, Lagos, it was stated that the contract will run for three months.
Part of the award letter reads: “Further to the receipt of your Application letter dated 16th of August 2021 on the above subject matter, I am directed to inform you that the Finance and General Purpose Committee of the Local Government has granted approval to your company to serve as Revenue Generating Contractor to the Local Government on collection of truck tolls within Apapa, Lagos State.
“In addition, the contract is awarded on the following terms and condition,
“That you are to remit the sum of N125,000 on a weekly basis to the coffers of the Local Government subject to periodic review. That you are to forward a written letter of acceptance to the Local Government within 48 hours from the date of receipt of this letter and complete all necessary documentation in respect of this Award thereafter.
“That you should liaise with Legal Officer of the Local Government to sign the Contractual Agreement and pay all necessary stamp duties. That you also liaise with the Revenue Committee who is to supervise execution of your assignment and ensure you comply with the agreed terms.
“That you are not expected to violate or default in your financial obligation, as failure to remit the approved revenue target will amount to revocation of this contract Award.
‘‘That the activity of your operation will be for a period of three months commencing the first day of October 2021 and ending on the first day of January 2022”.
Speaking in defense of the Council, Chief of Staff to the Council Chairman, Mr. Dele Afose, said that the Council has concluded plans to raid, arrest and prosecute anybody alleged to be collecting toll from truck drivers on its behalf.
Afose also said that the contract has long been revoked adding that it was an arrangement they met when the new Council management resumed duty and was revoked immediately.
The Council officer also said that he met with the Port Police Commissioner and perfected plans to arrest whoever that is collecting monies on the Council’s behalf.
He added: “These criminals are impersonating officials of the Council because the Council has not and will not detail anybody to collect tolls on its behalf.
“It was an arrangement we met when the management resumed duty about two years ago.”
Some of the truck drivers who spoke to SweetcrudeReports, said that since the Council has denied sending anybody to Port access roads to collect monies on its behalf, they will also stop paying tolls to these alleged criminals.
Efforts to reach Leo George for comments were futile as phone calls to their numbers did not go through.